Mary Bartlett Dixon

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Mary Bartlett Dixon
Mary Bartlett Dixon (headshot).jpg
Born1873 (1873)
DiedSeptember 6, 1957(1957-09-06) (aged 83–84)
Education1903, Johns Hopkins University School of Nursing
Thomas S. Cullen (m. 1920⁠–⁠1953)

Mary Bartlett Dixon Cullen (1873 – September 6, 1957) was an American nurse and suffragist. She graduated from Johns Hopkins University School of Nursing and helped establish Easton, Maryland's first hospital.

Early life and education[edit]

Dixon was born in Baltimore, Maryland, in 1873 to businessman William T. Dixon.[1]

In December 1889, Dixon announced her plan to enroll at the Johns Hopkins University School of Nursing, where her father worked.[2] She was admitted to the Johns Hopkins University School of Nursing due to her father's position with the school. The principal of the School of Nursing, Mary Adelaide Nutting, wanted to reduce the hours women worked, and she believed that by enrolling the president's daughter, he would feel compelled to reduce the hours so she was not overworked.[1] Nutting told Dixon directly that she was only admitted due to her father and not much was expected of her.[3]


In 1906, Judge William R. Martin commissioned Dixon to serve as the treasurer and help establish a hospital in Easton, Maryland.[4] She began the hospital in a rented building, which later burned to the ground. Dixon and Elizabeth Wright Dixon received $43,000 to construct the Memorial Hospital. Together, the woman began a nursing school in 1907.[5] The school was run by volunteers.[6] In 1909, she chaired the special sanitary committee run through the Maryland Association for the Prevention and Relief of Tuberculosis.[7]

Her nursing career did not deter her activism. In October 1909, Dixon was elected chairman of the Woman's Suffrage Association of Maryland.[1] The next year, she became chair of the legislative committee of the Just Government League of Maryland.[8] In 1917, she picketed to bring the passage of the Nineteenth Amendment to grant women the right to vote.[9] After Woodrow Wilson took office, Dixon was part of a group of suffragists who met with him to discuss the suffragist movement.[10]

She died on September 6, 1957.[11]


  1. ^ a b c Jacobs, Margaux. "Biographical Sketch of Mary Bartlett Dixon Cullen". Retrieved October 25, 2019.
  2. ^ "Society Girl a Nurse". Hagerstown Herald and Torch Light. Maryland. December 28, 1899. p. 8.Free to read
  3. ^ Warren, Mame (June 9, 2006). Our Shared Legacy: Nursing Education at Johns Hopkins, 1889–2006. JHU Press. p. 263. ISBN 9780801884733.
  4. ^ "Message from Charles Capute". Archived from the original on October 25, 2019. Retrieved October 25, 2019.
  5. ^ Claggett, Laurence (1999). Easton. Arcadia Publishing. p. 61. ISBN 9780738501710. Retrieved October 25, 2019.
  6. ^ "Women". The Star-Democrat. April 5, 2018. Retrieved October 25, 2019.
  7. ^ "Tuberculosis workers busy". Baltimore Sun. Marylan. February 6, 1909. p. 7.Free to read
  8. ^ Pollitt, Phoebe (2018). "Nurses Fight For The Right To Vote:" (PDF). Retrieved October 25, 2019.
  9. ^ Uminowicz, Glenn (May 2007). "The Justice of Woman Suffrage". Retrieved October 25, 2019.
  10. ^ Lewenson, Sandra (1996). Taking Charge: Nursing, Suffrage, and Feminism in America, 1873-1920. Jones & Bartlett Learning. p. 28. ISBN 9780887376849. Retrieved October 25, 2019.
  11. ^ "Mrs. Cullen Dies". Frederick News. September 6, 1957. p. 1.Free to read