The United States Navy Nurse Corps was officially established by Congress in 1908; however, unofficially, women had been working as nurses aboard Navy ships and in Navy hospitals for nearly 100 years. The Corps was all-female until 1965.In 1811, William P.C. Barton became the first to officially recommend that female nurses be added to naval hospital staff. However, it wasn't until 19 June 1861 that a Navy Department circular order finally established the designation of Nurse, to be filled by junior enlisted men. Fifteen years later, the duties were transferred to the designation Bayman (US Navy Regulations, 1876).