Date of Award


Document Type

Open Access Thesis



First Advisor

Thomas Brown


The South Carolina Confederate Soldiers’ Home and Infirmary in Columbia opened in 1909, serving two aged and infirm veterans per county. The last former Confederate state to establish a residential facility for veterans, South Carolina became the first state to reserve positions for women on the managing board. Women on the Board exercised more power there than at any comparable institution in the South, with policy implications that featured an increasingly inclusive policy for accommodation of women as both Confederate Soldiers’ Home and Infirmary administrators and occupants. When the institution closed in 1957, it had cared for women for a longer period of time than men for whom it was established. Grounded in the proslavery rebellion and half-grudgingly created by a state government hostile to social welfare initiatives, the Confederate Soldiers’ Home, under the cloak of the Lost Cause, became a showcase of the Progressive movement in South Carolina.