Another Heroine of WWI: Pauline Hildreth Field (1885-1919)

Photograph of Pauline H. Field from her July 1918 U.S. passport.

Pauline Hildreth Field was not born in New Hampshire, but her paternal grandmother was. Pauline  was one of over 160 women World War I Red Cross workers who died during service during World War I. She did not work as a nurse, but rather was a member of the American Red Cross  in France, in Hospital Hut Service, performing “hospital recreational work.”

In 1912 Pauline H. Field was listed on the New York City Social Register along with her sister.  On 15 June 1912 she attended the commencement exercises at Temple University (Philadelphia PA), receiving a certificate at the Teacher’s College, for having completed the Normal Course in Kindergarten Training.

On 11 July 1918 a United States Passport was issued to her where she states she was born on 6 March 1885 at 923 Madison Avenue, New York City, NY.  At that time she was residing in Los Angeles, California with her mother.  She was the daughter of William Hildreth & Charlotte Elizabeth “Lottie” Miller.

Signature of Pauline Hildreth Field.

Her passport stated that her destination was France, working for the Red Cross, and the was boarding a ship of the French Line on 31 July 1918.  She described herself as being 32 years old, standing 5-5-1/2 feet tall; having a high forehead, blue gray eyes, aquiline nose, straight mouth, round chin, reddish yellow hair, fair complexion, oval face, and one mole on her chin.  The passport provides the photograph that you see of her here.

Sacramento Bee newspaper notice of 13 June 1919.

Two newspapers list her death under the category of “accident.” A look at her burial card at the National Archives shows the notation “result of gun shot wounds, self-inflicted.”  (Editor’s note, there is no mention of suicide and so her cause of death continues to be somewhat of a mystery).  She died on 24 March 1919 at the American convalescent hospital at Savenay, near St. Nazaire and  is buried in Plot A., Row 32, Grave 24 of the Oise-Aisne American Cemetery, Seringes-et- Nesles, France.  In 1924 her mother, Charlotte (Miller) Field traveled to Europe, including a visit to France, where she no doubt visited her daughter’s grave.

From publication, The Truth About Hollywood, Holly Leaves, Volume 11, July 1, 1922.

In a publication, The Truth About Hollywood, Holly Leaves, Volume 11, published for July 1, 1922, is found the following details: “Two Hollywood Red Cross Heroines. Renewed interest in Red Cross affairs due to the annual drive brings out the fact that among Red Cross nurses who died in the service, two were from Hollywood, the only ones from the whole city to make the supreme sacrifice. They were Mary Agnes Moore and Pauline Hildreth Field. Miss Moore was the daughter of Mrs. Ravenna Moore, who now lives at 6107 Salem Place, and the sister of the motion picture stars, Owen, Matt and Tom Moore. Miss Field was the daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Hildreth Field, 1934 Franklin Circle, who are now iving at La Jolla. She died at the American convalescent hospital at Savenay, near St. Nazaire, France, a year after her enlistment, during which time she was doing hospital recreational work.”

Charlotte (Miller) Field taken from her 1924 U.S. passport.


Pauline Hildreth Field was a Mayflower Descendant of Elder William Brewster through her mother’s line as follows: Mrs. Charlotte Elizabeth (Miller) Field. Born at Homer NY 1847. Wife of William Hildreth Field (1843-1900). Daughter of Edward Miller (1815-1855) and Emily Wilhelmina Shedd. A descendant in the eleventh generation from Elder William Brewster through her great-grandmother, Olive (Brewster) Shedd. [SEE DANIEL SHED GENEALOGY]

ADDITIONAL READING: “The House That Lottie Built.”



In front of the American Red Cross line-of-communication Canteen at Dijon. Canteen worker passing out sandwiches in boxes to American soldiers before departing for the front. In the center of the group in the foreground is Miss Field the directrice of the Dijon Canteen. September 1918. Library of Congress.

—–First Generation—–

Richard Hildreth, b abt 1605 in England, married before 1628 to Sarah –. Married abt 1646 in MA to Elizabeth –. [SEE Hildreth Assocication].

—–Second Generation—–

Isaac Hildreth, son of Richard & Sarah (?) Hildreth. He married Elizabeth Wilson.

—–Third Generation—–

Isaac Hildreth, son of Isaac & Elizabeth (Wilson) Hildreth. He m. Rachel Adams.

—–Fourth Generation—–

Miss Field, Directress of the American Red Cross canteen at Dijon, France in front of the canteen [Personnel ARC Canteen France, August 1918] Library of Congress.

Jonathan Hildreth was born 30 August 1727 in Petersham MA, son of Isaac & Rachel (Adams) Hildreth.  Brother of Samuel Hildreth. He m1) Mary — who died in Westmoreland on 2 September 1751. He m2d by 1753) Phebe Farr. She d. 28 November 1758 in Westmoreland NH. He married 3rd) by 1763 in Dummerston VT to Dinah Davis, daughter of Phineas & Priscilla (Wood) Davis. She was born 12 Sep 1738 in Upton MA.  He was selectman of Chesterfield NH in 1767, 1770, and 1779. He “appears to have died after 1805” per the History of Chesterfield.
Children of Jonathan & Phebe (Farr) Hildreth:
1. Jonathan Hildreth, b. 14 March 1753 in Westmoreland NH; m. 1778 Lucy Bingham, Soldier in 1777.
2. Reuben Hildreth, b. 4 May 1755 in Putney VT. He m. 1781 to Susanna Sanderson, daughter of John Sanderson.
3. Shiltiel R. Hildreth, b. 10 Jan 1758 in Westmoreland NH.
Children of Jonathan & Dinah (?) Hildreth:
4. Isaac D. Hildreth, b. 8 Jan 1760 in Westmoreland NH d. in 1766 in Chesterfield NH.
5. Martin/Marten Hildreth, b. 6 Aug 1761 in Westmoreland NH; he m. 1782 Zilpah Eager.
6. Lotan Hildreth, b. 29 March 1763 in Chesterfield NH.
7. Phebe Hildreth, b. 12 Dec 1765; m. 1785 to Abel Fletcher
8. Edward Hildreth, b 14 Sep 1767
9. Adams Hildreth, b. 18 Oct 1769; m. 1795 Sally Baldwin
10. Dinah Hildreth, b. 8 July 1771, d. 1772
11. Dinah II Hildreth, b. 24 Feb 1773; She m. 22 July 1790 to Ezekiel Parker.
12. Tola Hildreth, b. 1 Sep 1774, d. same year.
13. Sarah Hildreth, b. 19 Feb 1776
14. Luna Hildreth, b. 31 July 1778, d. 1785.

—–Fifth Generation—–

Lotan Hildreth, son of Jonathan & Dinah (?) Hildreth. He was born 29 March 1763 in Chesterfield and d. 3 June 1812 in Chesterfield NH. He married Sarah Pierce.  [See some of Hildreth line].  She was born about 1764 and died 19 January 1852 in Chesterfield NH.  They are buried in Center Cemetery, Chesterfield, Cheshire Co. NH.
Children of Lotan & Sarah (Pierce) Hildreth:
1. Polly Hildreth, born 16 May 1785, died same year.
2. Luna Hildreth, b 24 Jan 1787; m1) 1805 Levi Fletcher, son of Abel Fletcher. She m2d) 1815 Jacob P. Hubbard.
3. Leonard Hildreth, b. 3 Aug 1789; m. Clarissa Davis, daughter of Amos Davis. Removed to Crown Point NY.
4. Lotan Hildreth, b. 8 Jan 1792, died at Crown Point NY.
5. Phebe Hildreth, b. 9 Aug 1794; m. Squire Street
6. +Africa Hildreth b. 1 April 1797 Chesterfield NH.
7. Sarah Hildreth, b 1799, m. CLark Streeter, died 4 March 1841
8. Polly Hildreth II, b –; m. Elijah H. Hildreth, son of Elijah Hildreth.
9. Charles Hildreth, m. Nancy Darling, daughter of Montgomery Darling. He died 19 June 1852, age 48
10. Robert Hildreth, m1) Sarah Howe. He m2d) Elvira Thomas of Hinsdale.
11. Cyrus Hildreth, died young.

—–Sixth Generation—–

Africa Hildreth, son of Lotan Hildreth & Sarah Pierce was b 1 April 1797 Chesterfield NH. Occupation, carpenter. He died 22 June 1869 in Chesterfield NH. He m1) Marian Blanchard, daughter of Benjamin & Marian (Hill) Blanchard. She was born abt 1800 and died 3 Oct 1831 in Chesterfield NH. He married 2d) 31 Jan 1833 in Chesterfield NH to Mary “Polly” Blanchard sister to his 1st wife. She was b 6 Apr 1807 and d. 10 Oct 1886. They are buried in Ware-Joslyn Cemetery, Chesterfield NH.  [See History of Chesterfield NH, Hildreth Family]
1850 US Census > NH > Cheshire > Chesterfield
Africa Hildreth 63
Mary Hildreth 53
Cristina Hildreth 18
Charles Hildreth 11
Sarah Hildreth 8
Children of Africa & Marian (Blanchard) Hildreth:
1. +Frances Almeda Hildreth, b. 16 April 1818 Chesterfield NH. She m. William Field of NYC [see below].
2. Cyrus C. Hildreth b 1 Nov 1820/21 Chesterfield NH. He married 1) Elizabeth Brooks of Northfield MA. Hm2d) Betsey Tarbel of Maine. They resided in Granville Michogan.
Children of Africa & Mary (Blanchard) Hildreth:
3. Louisa E. Hildreth, b. 23 April 1823 Chesterfield NH; She married Henry Freeland of NYC, resided at Tarrytown NY.
4. Henry S. Hildreth, b. 4 March 1826 Chestfield NH. He m 1 June 1848 to Carrie E. Pettee, dau of Stafford H. Pettee. They had one son, Erving A., b. 5 June 1850 who m. Addie O. Wilber, d. 24 Sep 1874 in her 27th year.
5. Lotan B. Hildreth, b. 24 Feb 1829. Policeman in NYC.
6. John Wilson Hildreth, b. 16 Ot 1836 in Chesterfield NH, died 9 March 1903 Vermont. He m1) Adelaide L. Huntley of Acworth NH who d. 19 Dec 1867. He m2d) 1869 Martha Lincoln, Carpenter in Chesterfield NH. Had children: Ida F., b 19 April 1866, Henry H., b 3 Aug 1869; Minnie M, b 3 Jan 1871, Flora B, b 18 Dec 1872; Clarence R., b 28 July 1874; Rosa C., b. 9 Sep 1876; Mary, b. 18 June 1880.
7. George Leavitt Hildreth, b 31 March 1838, d. 1 Dec 1910 Chesterfield NH. He married 4 March 1867 Eliza C. Lincoln of Wmd. They resided in Chesterfield NH.
8. Elathine A., Hildreth, b. 23 Sep 1840; m. Andrew Blakely of NYC.
7. Christina Hildreth b abt 1832 NH (per NH Census, History of Chesterfield NH says b. 6 Feb 1843; m. Samuel Newcomb of Hinsdale NH.
9. Larkin F., b. 4 April 1847, d. 22 Apr 1860
10. Charles C. Hildreth, b. 4 Nov 1848, unmarried, resided in Chesterfield NH.
11. Sarah Hildreth b. 25 Sep 1851 m. 2 Oct 1869 James H. Goodrich, son of James C. Goodrich.

—–Seventh Generation—–

William Field b. abt 1810 in England and died 16 Dec 1845 in New York, NY (per newspaper notice).  He married about 1842 to Frances Almeda Hildreth, daughter of Africa & Marian (Blanchard) Hildreth. She was born 16 April 1818 in Chesterfield NH, died 17 June 1875 in NYC at the home of her son, William H. Field, in NYC (see newspaper notice).
Commercial Advertiser, New York NY, Tues Dec 16, 1845
Mortuary Notice. DIED. On the 15th inst., WILLIAM FIELD of consumption in the 26th year of his age. Funeral tomorrow morning, 17ths inst. at 10 o’clock from his late residence, 82 Bayard street.
1865 Trow’s New York city directory
Field, Frances A., wid. William, h. 10 Tenth
New York Tribune, June 18, 1875 NY NY. Mortuary Notice.
FIELD–On the morning of Thursday, June 17, Frances A Field, at the residence of her son, after a long and painful illness. Relatives and friends are respectfully invited to attend the funeral, from the residence of her son, William Hildreth Field, No 923 Madison Avenue, on Sunday, the 20ths inst. at 12:30 p.m. without further notice.
Child of William & Frances A. (Hildreth) Field:
1. +William Hildreth Field, born 16 April 1843 in New York City, NY.

—–Eighth Generation—–

Photograph of William Hildreth Field, from Universities and their sons, etc, by Joshua Lawrence Chamberlain, 1898, page 55. Internet Archive.

William Hildreth Field, son of William & Frances A. (Hildreth) Field was born 16 April 1843 in New York City, New York.   He died died 14 April 1900 Madison Avenue, Manhattan, NYC.  He married married o 14 March 1867 to Charlotte Elizabeth Miller, daughter of Edward & Emily Wilhelmina (Shedd) Miller. She was born 24 June 1847, and died 10 Feb 1944. She is buried in Holy Cross Cemetery, Culver City, LA, California.
Appleton’s Cyclopedia of American Biography
FIELD, William Hildreth, lawyer, b. in New York City 16 April 1843. He graduated at Union college in 1863 and at Columbia college law school in 1865. He was taken into partnership by Judge John W. Edmonds, and remained with him until his death in 1874. He was elected president of the Catholic club of New York in June 1887 and re-elected in 1888. Under his management this body has become the most influential Roman Catholic organization in the state. He has tried many cases before the court of appeals, some of great public importance, involving the interpretation of statues, in which the law has been settled in accordance with the construction that he advocated. He edited, with Judge Edmonds, “Statues at Large of the State of New York” (9 vols, Albany 1863-75).
Children of William H. & Charlotte E. (Miller) Field:
1. William Miller Field,  born 11 Feb 1872 NY; died 6 July 1890 Adirondacks NY
2. Frances Hildreth Field, born 11 March 1874 NY;
3. +Pauline Hildreth Field, born on 6 March 1885 at 923 Madison Avenue, New York City, NY [this story is about her, see above]



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6 Responses to Another Heroine of WWI: Pauline Hildreth Field (1885-1919)

  1. Pingback: 100 Years Ago: “Gold Star Women” Nurses of World War I | Cow Hampshire

  2. Amy says:

    Very sad. I wonder what kind of accident…

  3. Lucy says:

    There is a fairly famous picture of Miss Field working at the Red Cross station in Dijon, France. God bless her, working to help our soldiers, including my Great Uncle.

    • Janice Brown says:

      Lucy. Thank you SO much for pointing out that there might be photographs of her. I revisited the Library of Congress and have added two photos of her at the canteen. And yes God Bless Her.

  4. Larry Hume says:

    According to burial records from the National Archives, Pauline died of self-inflicted gunshot wounds.

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