Charity 'Cherry' Ames is the peripatetic, job-hopping, mystery-solving, no nonsense nurse from Hilton, Illinois, featured in a series of twenty-seven mystery novels with medical settings published by Grosset & Dunlap between 1943 and 1968.
Guided by family friend Dr. Fortune, Cherry decides on a career in nursing. Her training at the Spencer Hospital School of Nursing is the subject of the first two books. While there, she meets the classmates (Gwen, Bertha, Josie, Vivian, and Mai Lee) who become series-long friends.
In the third book in the series, Army Nurse, Cherry joins the Army Nurse Corps. By the seventh volume, Private Duty Nurse, she's out of the Army and the eighth volume, Visiting Nurse, finds her living in Greenwich Village, NYC. Whenever Cherry takes a break from visiting nursing, Dr. Fortune just sends her off galavanting around the country on assignments.
Cherry never got married, although occasional boyfriends crop up, like Dr. Lex Upham and Wade Cooper.
Helen Wells (1910-1986) wrote volumes 1-7 & 17-27, Wells also created the Vicki Barr series.
Julie Campbell Tatham (1908-1999) authored volumes 8-16 and was also the creator of the Trixie Belden series.
Originally issued with dust jackets (volumes 1-22) in a deep red paper or, later, a reddish-brown tweed binding. The change to picture cover (PC) binding occurred circa 1962, when Grosset & Dunlap switched all the series books they published to that format. Early PC editions of volumes 1-22 have a yellow spine, which was changed to green shortly thereafter.
Grosset & Dunlap retitled and reprinted four titles (volumes 19-22) in paperback with new cover art in 1972. In 1978 they took 3 of the reprinted titles (volumes 20-22) and reprinted them with new cover art.
A new edition of Cherry Ames, Student Nurse was released by the Palm Healthcare Foundation, Inc., through its Palm Publishing LLC subsidiary.
Starting in October 2005, the Cherry Ames books written by Helen Wells were reprinted Springer Publishing Company.
books in the cherry ames seriesClick on any cover to enlarge it.
Yellow & Green Spine Picture Cover Bindings
cherry ames reprints
In 1978 G&D released 3 volumes of the retitled tales (Vols. 20-22) with new art.
Each paperback series renumbered the stories starting with volume 1.
reprints available from amazon
"The Clue of the Faceless Criminal"
"The Case of the Forgetful Patient"
"Mystery of Rogue's Cave"
"The Case of the Dangerous Remedy"
Springer Publishing Company Reprints
In October 2005, the Cherry Ames books written by Helen Wells were licensed to Springer Publishing Company. The first four books in the series were reprinted in facsimile hardcover editions, and made available individually and as a boxed set. In August 2006, four more Wells titles were republished in the same format, and in June, August, and December 2007, the remaining Wells titles were made available.
Set 2: Flight Nurse; Veteran's Nurse; Private Duty Nurse; Visiting Nurse - For Sale
Set 3: Cruise Nurse; Boarding School Nurse; Department Store Nurse; Camp Nurse - For Sale
Set 4: At Hilton Hospital; Island Nurse; Rural Nurse; Staff Nurse - For Sale
Set 5: Companion Nurse; Jungle Nurse; Mystery in the Doctor's Office; Ski Nurse Mystery - For Sale
Palm Publishing Reprint
A new edition of Cherry Ames, Student Nurse was released by the Palm Healthcare Foundation, Inc., through its Palm Publishing LLC subsidiary. Proceeds from the sale of the books were used to support nursing scholarships.
cherry ames spin-offs
Between 1958 and 1964, the Cherry Ames Girls Annual was printed and distributed in the UK, usually before Christmas. Each annual had two original Cherry Ames short stories by Helen Wells and additional stories by other authors.
1958: "Bermuda Adventure" & "Flood Train"
1959: "Ghost Town Mystery" & "Christmas in New York"
1960: "The Pinafore Club" & "The Big Wind"
1961: "Frontier Week" & "Snowbound"
1962: "Rocky Mountain Adventure"& "The Case of the Puzzling Patient"
1963: "The Playhouse Mystery" & "The Trouble with Sarah"
1964: "A Cape Cod Tale" & "The Riddle of Devil's Mountain"
In 1959, the Cherry Ames' Nursing Game was published by American board game manufacturer, Parker Brothers. Designed for 2 to 6 players, the game consists of a center-seamed, illustrated game board depicting various rooms in a hospital, 6 colored tokens, 36 colored rings, 20 directional cards, and a spinner. The object of the game is to travel about the board, gather six rings, and then leave the board at the space marked graduate.