Maxwell retired in 1921 but stayed connected to the hospital until the end of her life. When she fell ill in 1928, she became the first patient admitted to the Harkness Pavilion. She died there on Jan. 2, 1929, and was given full military honors during her burial at Arlington National Cemetery.
“Anna Maxwell was second to none in her determination that entrants to the nursing profession be educated individuals who were prepared to become hospital and community leaders,” said Wilhelmina Manzano, Senior Vice President and Chief Nursing Executive & Chief Quality Officer at NewYork-Presbyterian. “She was dedicated to the advancement of nursing. Her values remain strong today as Columbia University School of Nursing prepares its students to be competent, confident and excel as clinicians, researchers, and nurse leaders in a rapidly evolving healthcare system.”
When the Columbia-Presbyterian Medical Center moved to its Washington Heights location just before she died, the first building to open was Anna C. Maxwell Hall, a residence for nursing students. Today, it is the site of the Milstein Hospital Building but, at the time, it was the first academic medical center in the world.
More recently, the Columbia University School of Nursing raised $250,000 to name Anna’s Place, a space in its new building where alumni and students can come together, relax, reminisce, and exchange ideas. A celebration of Anna’s Place is scheduled for May 2020 during Columbia Nursing’s reunion.
Today, nearly a century after her death, Vose still thinks of the impact Anna Maxwell continues to have on nursing — and NewYork-Presbyterian.
“When I think about how empowered and important nurses are in today’s world, I think back to the people who led the way,” she says. “Anna really was a pioneer in advancing the nursing practice, and having people understand the value it brings to healthcare and to our soldiers. … She’s tremendously important. When you think about women who broke the glass ceiling — we think about women today who are CEOs — and yet, for nursing, I think about who made nursing an important part of the healthcare system. I would include Anna with them.”