Esther Winkler Shapiro, RN, PhD papers and memorabilia

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Reference code

US AA039

Name and location of repository

Level of description



Esther Winkler Shapiro, RN, PhD papers and memorabilia


  • 1937-1979 (Creation)


4 boxes (26 inches)

Name of creator


Biographical history

Esther Shapiro (nee Winkler) was born in New York City on April 29, 1920. She grew up in Flushing, Queens and earned a BS in Chemistry from Queens College in 1941. She then enrolled in The Mount Sinai Hospital School of Nursing, graduating with her RN diploma in 1944. Following her graduation, she enlisted as a nurse in the U.S. Army with the rank of Second Lieutenant.
She began active duty on February 1st, 1945. After basic training at Fort Dix, NJ, she spent two months at Thomas M. England General Hospital, a wartime hospital in Atlantic City, before being transferred in late April to the 317th General Hospital, then based out of Seattle. Upon arriving in Seattle in early May she was sent on a temporary assignment to the 147th General Hospital in Hawaii, where she spent several weeks before returning to the 317th in late July. In August, the 317th General Hospital shipped out for Japan, arriving in Yokohama on the U.S.S. Repose in late September. In late October she was assigned to the 76th Station Hospital, also based in Japan. She remained there until late February 1946, when she was sent back to the United States. She spent the remainder of her service at Fort Dix, receiving an honorable discharge in December 1946.
In 1947 she married Norman Shapiro, from whom she was later divorced. The couple settled in Colorado. In 1951 she received an MA in psychology from the University of Denver, and in 1961 she received a Ph.D. As a child psychologist specializing in the needs of children with hearing disabilities, she served for many years at The Children’s Hospital, now Children’s Hospital Colorado, in Denver. She also maintained a private practice and served on various state child welfare committees. She passed away on May 29, 2009.

Content and structure elements

Scope and content

This collection consists primarily of correspondence, documents, photographs and memorabilia dating from Esther Winkler Shapiro’s service as a U.S. Army nurse on the Pacific front during the Second World War, with a smaller assortment of material dating from her time as a nursing student at The Mount Sinai Hospital School of Nursing. Memorabilia include a World War II Army Nurse Corps uniform and cap, a Japanese flag, and Mount Sinai Hospital School of Nursing caps. The collection include a shipboard newsletter from the U.S.S. Repose and a hospital newspaper from Thomas M. England General Hospital, locations where Shapiro served.

System of arrangement

The collection has been divided into four series.

Conditions of access and use elements

Conditions governing access

This material is available for use. Contact the Archives ( for access to these materials.

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Languages of the material

  • English
  • Japanese

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Custodial history

Immediate source of acquisition

These papers were donated to the Aufses Archives in June 2016 by Amy Shapiro, daughter of Esther Winkler Shapiro.

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Archivist's note

Processed by Nicholas Webb in October 2017.

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