Famous Nurses Who Made History
Virginia Avenel Henderson
Developed the Nursing Theory (1897 to 1996) Known as the first lady of nursing, Virginia Avenel Henderson can be considered as the most famous nurse of the 20th century, with all her contributions and influence to American and international nursing education, practice, research as well as its implications. She was the woman behind the development of nursing theory, carefully and clearly defining the roles of nurses in health care. Hendersons theory that nurses should aid everyone, sick and well, in the quest for better overall health or peaceful death is recognized as a major contribution to the nursing practice.
Virginia Henderson owed her success to the privilege of being thought and trained in the Army School of Nursing, and the Teachers College in Columbia University for her B.S. and M.A. degrees. She spent her first years in the profession as public health nurse at the Henry Street Settlement as well as in the visiting nurse service in Washington D.C. Henderson also became the first full time nursing instructor at the Norfolk Protestant School of Nursing, and a very active member of the Virginia Nurses Association. While in the teaching profession, Henderson pushed for the inclusion of psychiatric nursing in Virginia States nursing education in 1929.