[Cross-posted from New Books in American Studies] Is there an institution in the United States that enjoys a better reputation than the American Red Cross? In her thorough, accessible new book The American Red Cross from Clara Barton to the New Deal (Johns Hopkins UP, 2012), Marian Moser Jones (associate professor of family science, University of Maryland School of Public Health) traces the history of the American Red Cross as a humanitarian relief organization. The book shows how the ARC developed from a local, national organization into one with worldwide scope. As it did, it had to cope with trials that challenged its original structure and mission. Progressives and professionals contested Clara Barton’s informal style of leadership and management. Crises oversees and domestically put tension on the ARC’s commitment to maintaining neutrality in order to preserve access to the suffering. And the increasing scope of federal and state authority forced it to rethink it’s role in an increasingly crowded humanitarian marketplace.