Mrs. Susan B. Cook, born in Ohio, parents born in Germany, was the second president of the State Nurses' Association, following Mrs. Lounsbery's resignation in 1915. She was also one of the incorporators of the SNA in 1933.
In the online list of registered nurses, 1907-1935, Mrs. Cook is listed as having graduated in 1905, with License Number 102. She is not listed among the first 30 nurses who were licensed, by either waiver or by exam. However, biographies indicate that she was in the first graduating class, 1895, of the City Hospital School of Nursing in Wheeling, subsequently Ohio Valley General Hospital. Her obituary calls her the "State's First Registered Nurse" - obviously an error.
The 1910 Census of Pease Twp., Belmont County, Ohio, lists Susan Cook, a 39 year old widowed nurse, residing with her sister, Alice V. Rector, a 46 year old widow & student nurse, born in Mississippi. Susan is shown as having been married 32 years and had 2 children, none living.
Mrs. Cook is named in the biography of nurse, Francina McMahon of Marshall County, who worked with Dr. Harriett Jones, the first female doctor in West Virginia. These three women were crusaders for public health and traveled around the state in a wagon to educate the people.
In the 1930 census of Monongalia County, W. Va., she is listed as a 56 year old widow, and the Superintendent of the Eastmont Tuberculosis Sanitarium near Morgantown. She served as its head until 1945 when it was converted to a convalescent home for crippled children. She died in Wheeling, August 19, 1956, at the age of 91.
State's First Registered Nurse Dies
West Virginia's first registered nurse, Mrs. Susan B. Cook, 92, died Sunday evening at the home of her niece, Mrs. Agnes Bird, of 1312 Marshall St. McMechen, where she made her home for a number of years.
She was active in the nursing profession until she was 82, and was a member of the American Nursing Association and of the state and district associations. The Morgantown district of the state nurses association is named in her honor.
She was a native of Bellaire, and was the daughter of Frederick and Hannah Haught Brand. Her husband, James Cook, preceded her in death.
Surviving besides Mrs. Bird, are one other niece, Mrs. Clara Smith and two nephews, Henry and Frank Meyers, all of Martins Ferry.
Friends may call at the B. W. Riggs Funeral Home, McMechen. Funeral services will be held at 2 p.m. on Wednesday at the funeral home. Dr. Arthur Eakin of the First Church of God, will officiate. Interment will be in Greenwood Cemetery, Wheeling.