The nurse’s cap originated in the early Christian Era as a head covering for deaconesses that cared for the sick. During the 1800’s, head coverings evolved into the more familiar white cap that was first used by Florence Nightingale.
Around 1874, the Bellevue Training School in New York City adopted a special nursing cap to identify nurses who had graduated from Bellevue.
Other nursing schools also developed unique caps as a way to identify the graduate nurse and her school of nursing. The cap collection consists of 85 caps on display and continues to grow.
The Museum of Nursing History’s large nursing cap collection which showcases different styles of nursing caps worn throughout the decades. See the cap collection at the Museum housed at La Salle University in Philadelphia, PA.
*Pictures taken at the Museum of Nursing History in 2008 by Susan Fuchs.