There was a woman a survivor of the Titanic who was a reporter and she was welcome on the battlefields as a reporter!!
Actually Women were well represented during the war mostly as doctors and nurses but there even a few who drove ambulances and trucks!! There were also clerks & secretaries. Gonna toss link and snippets since this is well written...
""" 1901 and 1908 the establishment of the Army and Navy Nurse Corps opened the door for women in the military but ever so slightly. It wasn't until the United States got involved in World War One that some parts of the government got serious about using woman power.
As the Army stumbled around bureaucratic red tape trying to figure out how to enlist women the Navy simply ignored the War Department dissenters and quickly recruited women. Nearly 13,000 women enlisted in the Navy and the Marine Corps on the same status as men and wore a uniform blouse with insignia. The Navy's policy was extended to the Coast Guard, but personnel records from World War I contain scarcely any references to the Coast Guard Yeomanettes. A handful of them apparently were employed at the diminutive Coast Guard headquarters building in Washington. Nineteen-year-old twin sisters Genevieve and Lucille Baker transferred from the Naval Coastal Defense Reserve to become the first uniformed women in the Coast Guard. With the war's end the Coast Guard Yeomanettes, along with their Navy and Marine Corps counterparts, were mustered out of the service.
These were the first women in the U.S to be admitted to some military rank and status.
The War Department continued to thwart the Army's
repeated requests for women to serve as clerks
and consequently women other than nurses did not serve
in the Army during World War I.
But perhaps this isn't actually so - for an interesting sidebar
take a look at the Signal Corps Women in WWI The Unsung Women
Physical and Occupational Therapists were called Reconstruction Aides and saw service also in the armed forces - they served in hospitals in the U.S. and overseas.
Those nurses who did serve were in Belgium, Italy, England and on troop trains and transport ships. Army and Navy Nurse Corps women served valiantly throughout the war, many received decorations for their service.
At least three Army nurses were awarded the Distinguished Service Cross, the nations' second highest military honor. Several received the Distinguished Service Medal, our highest noncombat award, and over twenty were awarded the French Croix de Guerre. Nurses were wounded, and several died overseas and are buried in military cemeteries far from home.
Although womens groups, the Army, educational organizations and the YWCA all lobbied for a womens corps to equal that of the British WAAC**, their appeals fell into the cracks created by narrow minds. When hostilities ceased on November 11, 1918, the bureaucrats boondoggled, and plans for women in the miltary were scrapped by the recalcitrant War Department.
Yet during that War, the so-called Big One, over thirty thousand women had served in the Army and Navy Nurse Corps, the Navy as Yeoman (F), the Marines, and the Coast Guard. They served their country before they could vote!!
The door was opened further, but it would be twenty three years before women could be even remotely considered as an integral part of the United States military establishment.
Yet interestingly enough it was the service of women in the military and the defense works that gave a huge push to the passing of the 19th Amendment.
President Woodrow Wilson was won over to the suffragists' side in part because of the bravery of women serving on the front and their proven abilities as they replaced men in offices and factories. In September 1918 Wilson addressed the Senate, urging that they follow the House in passing the 19th Amendment. His dramatic plea asked that the Senators recognize the contributions made by American women in the war. Wilson proclaimed ...
"...Are we alone to ask and take the utmost that our women can give, service and sacrifice of every kind, and still say we do not see what title that gives them to stand by our sides in the guidance of the affairs of their nations and ours? We have made partners of the women in this war; shall we admit them only to a partnership of suffering and sacrifice and toil and not to a partnership of privilege and right."
One of the most definitive books on the subject is Lettie Gavin's "American Women in World War I - They Also Served", 1997, University Press of Colorado. Ask your library to find it for you. """"
"""The more than 25,000 US women who served in Europe in World War I did so on an entrepreneurial basis, especially before 1917. They helped nurse the wounded, provide food and other supplies to the military, serve as telephone operators (the “Hello Girls”), entertain troops, and work as journalists. Many of these “self-selected adventurous women … found their own work, improvised their own tools … argued, persuaded, and scrounged for supplies. They created new organizations where none had existed.” Despite hardships, the women had “fun” and “were glad they went.” Women sent out to “canteen” for the US Army – providing entertainment, sewing on buttons, handing out cigarettes and sweets – were “virtuous women” sent to “keep the boys straight.” Army efforts to keep women to the rear proved difficult. “Women kept ignoring orders to leave the troops they were looking after, and bobbing up again after they had been sent to the rear.” Some of the US women became “horrifyingly bloodthirsty” in response to atrocity stories and exposure to the effects of combat. Looking back, the American women exhibited “contradictory feelings” of sadness about the war, horror at what they had seen, and pride in their own work. Mary Borden, a Baltimore millionaire who set up a hospital unit at the front from 1914 to 1918, wrote: “Just as you send your clothes to the laundry and mend them when they come back, so we send our men to the trenches and mend them when they come back again. You send your socks … again and again just as many times as they will stand it. And then you throw them away. And we send our men to the war again and again … just until they are dead.”
American Elsie Janis performed for British and French troops starting in 1914, and “anticipated Bob Hope in her devotion to entertaining the soldiery.” Women entertainers were treated chivalrously by troops, not as sex objects. Doughboys behaved badly towards French women, but put American ones “on a pedestal that grew and grew,” as Janis put it. One woman who stayed with 200 doughboys in a canteen near the front said she would feel comfortable leaving a 16-year-old daughter there alone, because “if any man touched her with his finger, these boys would tear him into a thousand pieces.” Women entertained troops not only with song and dance but with lectures, dramatic readings, and poetry. “Troops clamored for Ella Wheeler Wilcox’s readings of her own sentimental poems” urging sexual purity: “I may lie in the mud of the trenches, / I may reek with blood and mire, / But I will control, by the God in my soul, / The might of my man’s desire.” A soldier described seeing Sarah Willmer perform (after a 10-mile ride through a storm had, she thought, ruined her dress): “I shall never forget as long as I live the blessed white dress she had on the night she recited to us. We had not seen a white dress … in years. There we were with our gas masks at alert, all ready to go into the line, and there she was talking to us just like a girl from home. It sure was a great sight, you bet.”
Harriot Stanton Blatch in 1918 (with an endorsement by Teddy Roosevelt) urged American women and the government alike to “mobilize woman-power” for World War I. One reason for US women to support the war effort, she argued, was the character of Prussian culture which glorified brute force, supported men’s domination of women, and treated children harshly. To men dubious of women’s entry into the labor force, Blatch argued that “[e]very muscle, every brain, must be mobilized if the national aim is to be achieved.” Blatch praised women’s contributions in Britain, where participating in the war effort had made women “capable … bright-eyed, happy.” She described England as “a world of women – women in uniforms; … nurses … messengers, porters, elevator hands, tram conductors, bank clerks, bookkeepers, shop attendants … Even a woman doing … womanly work … dusted a room for the good of her country … They were happy in their work, happy in the thought of rendering service, so happy that the poignancy of individual loss was carried more easily.” This happiness seems dubious as a general proposition (see pp. 384–85), but for some individuals it must have been true. One woman wrote that she was “nearly mad with joy” at being sent to Serbia to do war work. Women at the front used very different language than those at home – receiving, in the words of one, “something hidden and secret and supremely urgent … .[Y]ou are in another world, and … given new senses and a new soul.”
The World Wars shook up gender relations, but only temporarily. Individual British women in the World Wars found new freedoms and opportunities in wartime – “like being let out of a cage,” in one woman’s words. However, gender changes were short-lived. “[A]ttitudes towards [women’s] roles at home and at work remained remarkably consistent over nearly fifty years. Both wars put conventional views about gender roles under strain,” but no permanent change occurred in hostility