Profile: Marie Mariano
I really did NOT want to be a nurse. No way, no how. I wanted to go to work on the railroad. In fact, there was a woman who lived three blocks down from me who, every morning, carried a lunch pail and wore her striped overalls. I was going to work on the railroad like Mrs. Moore. I wasn’t going to become no nurse!
Subject: Marie Mariano
Date of Birth: June 1922
Place of Birth: Pocatello, ID
Age at Interview: 76
Date of Interview: April 1998
Interviewer: Arden Eversmeyer
Place of Interview: Houston, TX
Transcriber: P. Anderson
Length of Transcript: original 56 pages, OCR text 56 pages; ~ 25,700 words
Contract: Unconditional; contract with Loafers, Inc (organization that preceded OLOC and OLOHP)
Contract Dated: 04/15/1998
Support documents: 9 pages; copies of photos and an article
Separate Supports: VHS titled Marie Mariano’s Retirement Party (36 years at Methodist Hospital)
Marie was raised in Idaho and after her father died from injuries sustained in World War I, she spent much of her early life helping a local farmer pick potatoes, onions, apples and such in return for a third of whatever was picked. The one thing Marie swore she'd never be was a nurse. Yet that's what she became. Her nursing career started delivering babies for Public Health, first near her home and later both in Alaska, where she traveled by dog sled, and in Arizona, where she traveled on horseback. She also did a stint in the Army Nurse Corp. Most of her 36 year nursing career was spent in neurology. The one constant in Marie's life was Sara. They had been together for 29 years when Sara died. It wasn't until fifteen years later that Marie connected with the lesbian community and she delighted in finding all sorts of friends, and that there were social activities for old lesbians, bookstores and lesbian-friendly bars.