Undated photo of a Visiting Nurse Service of New York nurse with an older New Yorker. (This makes me think of one of my favourite childhood books, 'Cherry Ames, Visiting Nurse'.) Wonderful service, wonderful nurses.
Nursing began to emerge as a profession in the late 19th century, along with professional "home health care." The newly created hospitals needed nurses to care for their patients, and developed schools to train them. As trained nurses became available, wealthier families sometimes hired them as live-in care providers for invalids and the elderly.