The Navy Nurse Corps

The Navy Nurse Corps was established by Congress in 1908, but at that time no provision was made for rank or rating comparable to the Navy's male personnel. While they have never held actual rank, the Navy nurses have since been accorded privileges similar to those of officers. Under a congressional enactment approved by President Roosevelt on July 3, 1942, members of the Navy Nurse Corps were granted relative rank. This means that while they are not actually commissioned officers, they hold rank corresponding to that of officers in the Naval service.

Miss Sue S. Dauser, of Anaheim, Orange County, California, is Superintendent of the Navy Nurse Corps and has a rank relative to that of a Lieutenant Commander. She has served in the Corps since 1917, and has been Superintendent since 1939.

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The Contributions of Women to the United States Naval Observatory: The Early Years

Women were breaking into the field of astronomy in the late nineteenth century for many reasons. Women were often used at observatories because they could be paid less than men in the same position. Americas most prominent female astronomer Maria Mitchell received a salary of only $800 a year while her male colleagues at Vassar received $2500 a year. In 1900, after almost 20 years of service to the Harvard College Observatory, Williamina Fleming was receiving a salary of just $1,500 a year while male assistants were paid at least $2,500. Flemming's boss, Edward Pickering wrote in his 1898 annual report that women were "Capable of doing as much good routine work as astronomers who would receive larger salaries. Three or four times as many assistants can thus be employed."

At the USNO men and women computers (referred to as "Subprofessionals" at the Observatory) were paid the same salary, $1,200 a year in 1906, as dictated by a pay scale set in 1892. However, men were given a path to better job opportunities and were usually not limited to computing for very long.

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