CRNA Profiles: Sophie Winton

A practitioner in anesthesia for more than 50 years, Sophie Winton began her career at Swedish Hospital in Minneapolis where she was trained in anesthesia. In 1918 she joined the Nursing Corps, then part of the Red Cross, and was assigned to Mobile Hospital No. 1 in the Chateau-Thierry area in France, often giving as many as 25-30 anesthetics a day with open drop ether and chloroform. She received the French Croix de Guerre and six oversea service bars for her service on the front lines during World War I.

In 1933, she lent her financial support in a test case in California that was to have far-reaching effects on the practice of nurse anesthesia: Chalmers-Francis v Nelson. Winton was an early independent practitioner and managed her own dental and plastic surgery clinic in California until 1960. She was awarded honors by the Mexican Dental Association in conjunction with the International Dental Association for her advancement in the delivery of dental anesthesia. In 1984 she was presented with the AANA’s Agatha Hodgins Award for Outstanding Accomplishment.


 Sources for Additional Information on Winton


Bankert M. Watchful Care: A History of America's Nurse Anesthetists. New York: Continuum Publishing; 1993.

Garde JF. CRNA pioneer Sophie Winton dies at age 102. AANA NewsBulletin. 1989;43(6):4.

Miriam Shupp and Sophie Winton presented with 10th AANA Annual Agatha Hodgins Award for Outstanding Accomplishment. AANA NewsBulletin. 1984;38(11):5-7.

Sophie Winton: a remarkable woman, a remarkable life. Anesthesia History Association Newsletter. 1987;5(4):3,16.​

Thatcher VS. History of Anesthesia with Emphasis on the Nurse Specialist. Philadelphia: JB Lippincott;1953.