Army Hospital Ship Blanche F. Sigman

The Army Hospital Ship Blanche F. Sigman - formerly the SS Stanford White


How the ship was named...

One Ohio nurse, Lt. Blanche F. Sigman of Akron, was chief nurse of the 25th Evacuation Hospital. She arrived on the beachhead at Anzio shortly after the landings were made on January 22, 1944. On February 7, a German bomb struck one of the hospital buildings, killing Lt. Sigman and five other nurses. Soon after her death an army hospital ship was named in her honor.

More History

Named after the first Army nurse to be killed in action.
First LT B.F.Sigman died at the Anzio beach head.

During conversion a lower deck was added, further bulkheads, a one inch thick, eighteen inch wide band of steel was riveted around most of the hull and plates of a similar nature were riveted to their upper decks. Then and only then did they commence to put in place the extra decks required by a ship of this type. After closing for good the hatch ways a new superstructure was added giving the ships a distinctly different appearance. After conversion the ships could carry nearly 600 hundred patients which were cared for in any one of its 44 wards, other wards for the mental and violent cases were catered for also. The medical staff comprised seventeen Officers, thirty nine nurses and 159 attendants, the ships crew numbered 123. In compliance with international law for hospital ships the funnel had to be changed to allow for 12ft Red Cross symbols, the same symbols were also visible on the upper deck and ships side.