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Civic GiftsVoluntarism and the Making of the American Nation-State$
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Elisabeth S. Clemens

Print publication date: 2020

Print ISBN-13: 9780226559360

Published to Chicago Scholarship Online: September 2020

DOI: 10.7208/chicago/9780226670973.001.0001

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The Expansible Nation-State

The Expansible Nation-State

(p.103) 4 The Expansible Nation-State
Civic Gifts

Elisabeth S. Clemens

University of Chicago Press

Over the first decades of the twentieth century, this model of urban governance was harnessed to unprecedented crises, both local and international. The 1906 San Francisco Earthquake inspired a national response to the disaster that extended the capacities of a still new organization, the American Red Cross. Closely linked to the presidency, the Red Cross came to function as a voluntary infrastructure for the extension of national efforts, an arrangement that would be solidified in the mobilization for the First World War. During that conflict, “voluntary” giving to a national cause was established as a model of good citizenship and institutionalized through the charitable deduction to the individual income tax.

Keywords:   San Francisco Earthquake, World War I, American Red Cross, fundraising, civic inclusion

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