Friday, 13 July 2018
A wonderful tribute to Worker Mary 'May' Wylie of the Queen Mary's Army Auxiliary Corps who died while serving in WW1
Here is what happened next: The Liverpool Scottish Association sent a message to my friend Sue Robinson of the group Wenches in Trenches The Roses of No Man's Land, saying: The Association was alerted by a recent letter to the 'Liverpool Echo' that today, 9th July 2018, was going to be the Centenary of the death in Oswestry of Worker Mary 'May' Wylie of Queen Mary's Army Auxiliary Corps where she was serving on attachment to 3/10th (Scottish) Bn, Kings (Liverpool) Regiment.
She is buried in Anfield Cemetery. Consequently I conducted a short memorial service at the graveside and Kenny Whittaker played a lament. In July 1918 the Bootle Times noted that ".... May Wylie died for her country as surely as the gallant soldiers who fall in battle". A full report will appear in this Winter's newsletter. From the Liverpool Scottish Association via Sue Robinson.
My grateful thanks to "The Liverpool Echo", the Liverpool Scottish Association and Sue Robinson. Together "We will remember them" ALL.
Tuesday, 10 July 2018
I can’t seem to find a Hilda and the marriages the four Clifton Brown girls made were not to anyone called Wynne. I found a Reginald Wynne who married a Hilda Brown in 1902, St. George’s Hannover Square, London. He died in Paris in 1913 and was a Colonel in the British Army who fought in the Boer War, which would tally with Hilda being a widow in 1917 when she went to visit America to raise funds to take an ambulance unit to Russia.
I read in one newspaper report about Hilda that her husband had been ‘a general’. According to the Red Cross website, a meeting was held at the Royal Automobile Club in London in September 1914, asking members to lend their vehicles for service as ambulances. Hilda and a man called Ivor Bevan (about whom I can find nothing!) formed the Bevan-Wynne Ambulance Unit and Hilda drove several of the vehicles to Belgium herself. She was based in Dixmunde, where she met up with Dr. Hector Monro and Elsie Knocker and Mairi Chisholm, who also took a mobile ambulance unit to Belgium and France in 1914.
There is a mention of Hilda in Sarah Macnaughtan’s book about her war on two continents. And a photograph of Hilda was featured on the front cover of “The Sketch” on 2nd September 1915, with this report:
"Hilda Wynne in the trenches in the Western Front After service in Belgium, France and Italy, in 1917 Hilda went to America and raised funds for the Anglo Russian Bevan Ambulance Cars Unit."
At that time Hilda was living in West Chapel Street in Mayfair, London. She served in Russia until 1919 and was awarded the Kuaatan Order of St. George for her work with Russian Guards on the Kovel Front.
Sources: http://www.ebooksread.com/authors-eng/albert-bushnell-hart/harpers-pictorial-library-of-the-world-war--volume-7-tra/page-11-harpers-pictorial-library-of-the-world-war--volume7-tra.shtml Award from Russia http://trove.nla.gov.au/newspaper/article/22343113/2539987 and photograph from "The Sketch" newspaper of 2nd September 1915.
Friday, 6 July 2018
MANCHESTER (GORTON) CEMETERY, Lancashire, UK
SMITH, Staff Nurse, F. E. SMITH, No. 2/ResS/1235. Staff Nurse Smith worked at the Military Hospital in Aylesbury, UK during WW1. She served with the Queen Alexandra's Imperial Military Nursing Service and died on 1st July 1918. Staff Nurse Smith was buried in Gorton Cemetery, Manchester, Grave Reference: P. C.E. 140.
MIKRA BRITISH CEMETERY, KALAMARIA, Greece
MacDOWELL, Chauffeuse, MATILDA with theScottish Women's Hospital. Matilda died on 3rd July 1918 and was buried in Mikra British Cemetery, Kalamaria, Greece, Grave Reference: 1553.
BASRA WAR CEMETERY, Iraq
KEMP, Staff Nurse, C. M. F. Kemp of the 40th British General Hospital. Staff Nurse Kemp was a member of the Queen Alexandra's Imperial Military Nursing Service. She died on 4th July 1918 and was buried in Basra War Cemetery in Mesopotamia (now in Iraq) - Grave Reference: III. T. 2.
EDINBURGH (ROSEBANK) CEMETERY, Edinburgh, UK
ELDER, Telephonist, ELIZABETH GRANT ELDER, No. G/2605 with the Women's Royal Naval Service. Elizabeth died on 6th July 1918 and was buried in Rosebank Cemetery, Edinburgh, UK - Grave Reference: K. 207.
CANTERBURY CEMETERY, KENT, Kent, UK
MOSS, Driver, R M. MOSS, of the Women's Legion, attached to the Army Service Corps. Driver Moss died on 7th July 1918 and was buried in Canterbury Cemetery, Kent, UK - Grave Reference: R. 351.
LAMBETH CEMETERY, London, UK
EVANS, Member, NELLIE, 12410 of the Women's Royal Air Force. Nellie died of sickness on 7th July 1918 at the age of 23. Nellie was married to A. W. Evans, of Courtney Road., Drayton Park, Holloway, London. Grave Reference: Screen Wall. H.3. 859.
LIVERPOOL (ANFIELD) CEMETERY, Lancashire, UK
Worker (which is equivalent to the male rank of Private) May (Mary) Wylie, No. 6306 of the Queen Mary's Army Auxiliary Corps, was attached to the 10th Reserve Battalion of The King's (Liverpool Scottish Regiment). May was born in 1898 in Bootle. Her parents were Hugh Wylie and his wife Emily Mary Wylie, nee Hodgson of Stanley Rd., Bootle. May had the following siblings: Harold, Margaret, Rose and Allan. May died on 9th July 1918 at at Oswestry Military Hospital at the age of 20. May’s body was returned home for her funeral and she was buried with full military honours in Anfield Cemetery, Liverpool - Grave Reference: I. U. 786. May is also remembered on Bootle Civic Memorials in Linacre Council School and Liverpool (Anfield) Cemetery
FRENSHAM (ST. MARY) CHURCHYARD, Surrey, UK
STEWART, Staff Nurse, WILMA BRIDGES of the Territorial Force Nursing Service. Wilma died of phthisis on 10th July 1918. Her parents were Charles W. and Sarah Bridges Stewart, of Pembroke Crescent, Hove, Sussex. Grave Reference: On West boundary.
BUXTON CEMETERY, Derbyshire, UK
ROSS, Nursing Sister, ADA JANET of the 1st Gen. Hosp., Canadian Army Medical Corps. Ada died on 12th July 1918, at the age of 50. Grave Reference: 2479.
ALVIE PARISH CHURCHYARD, Inverness-shire, UK
GRANT, Worker, JESSIE, 21527. Queen Mary's Army Auxiliary Corps. Died of pneumonia, 13 July 1918. Age 25. Daughter of George and Bella Grant, of Rest Cottage, Kincraig. Grave Reference: In South-East corner.
FOREST TOWN (ST. ALBAN) CHURCHYARD, Nottinghamshire, UK
YOUNG, Nurse, ADA ELIZABETH. Voluntary Aid Detachment. 15 July 1918. Age 33.
Daughter of the late Serjt. Maj. Young (5th Dragoon Guards) and Mrs. Young, of Dublin.
WOOLWICH CEMETERY, London, UK
DAW, Worker, WINIFRED, 7319. M.T. Depot (Sydenham), Queen Mary's Army Auxiliary Corps. 16 July 1918. Grave Reference: 11. 278
LEATHERHEAD (SS. MARY AND NICHOLAS) CHURCHYARD, Surrey, UK
WELLER, Worker, ADA ELIZABETH, 39645. Queen Mary's Army Auxiliary Corps. 17 July 1918. Grave Reference: In East part.
STE. MARIE CEMETERY, LE HAVRE, Seine-Maritime, France
ASPDEN, Worker, DOROTHY, 30438. Queen Mary's Army Auxiliary Corps. 21 July 1918. Grave Reference: Div. 62. III. N. 6.
BROOKWOOD CEMETERY, Surrey, UK
HILLS, Sister, MAUDE ELLEN. Territorial Force Nursing Service. Died of sickness, 22 July 1918. Age 43. Daughter of Edwin and Sarah Broadhurst Hills, of Cranbrook, Kent. Served in France. Grave Reference: H. 181321.
MORTON (THORNHILL) CEMETERY, Dumfriesshire, UK
HASTINGS, Sister, H M. Territorial Force Nursing Service. 23 July 1918. Grave Reference: G2. 12.
TERLINCTHUN BRITISH CEMETERY, WIMILLE, Pas de Calais, France
YOUNG, Nurse, MARGARET CAMERON. 2nd Gen. Hosp., Voluntary Aid Detachment. Died of disease, 30 July 1918. Age 25. Daughter of Amelia and the late Thomas Young, of 37, Newington Avenue, Belfast. Grave Reference: I. F. 44. See photo from Callan Chevin’s Fb page.
SWANMORE (ST. BARNABAS) CHURCHYARD, Hampshire, UK
HORNER, Worker, VIOLET MAY, 45051. Hostel (Bristol), Queen Mary's Army Auxiliary Corps. 30 July 1918. Grave Reference: North-East of church.
Wednesday, 4 July 2018
Nursing Sister Mary Rodwell was the nurse attending Herbert when he was allowed to return to Britain for treatment after being seriously wounded by a shell fragment. They were aboard British Hospital Ship "Anglia", which hit a mine and sank while returning to Britain with wounded soldiers from the Western Front on 17th November 1915.
Mary Rodwell was born in Brockdish, Norfolk, UK (near Diss) on 7th June 1874. Her parents were John and Emma Rodwell, she later lived in the village of Oakley on the Norfolk/Suffolk border.
Mary trained as a nurse at Hendon Infirmary in North West London from 1901 to 1904. She went on to work at the Samaritan Free Hospital, Marylebone Road, London, after which she worked as a private nurse. Mary was a member of the Crystal Palace and Anerley Women's Freedom League (WFL).
When war broke out, Mary felt it was her duty to volunteer for foreign service. From February to May 1915, she served on hospital trains, before being posted to the Hospital Ship "Anglia". Mary was the only nurse on the ship who died when "Anglia" hit a mine and sank on 17th November 1915.
"Mary was amongst the nursing staff on board who attended to King George V on his return from France in October 1915, when he had been injured in a riding accident" while visiting the troops on the Western Front." (p.175).
Mary has no grave but is commemorated on the Hollybrook Memorial in Southampton, UK, on the QAIMNS memorial in York Minster, the memorial board in St. Paul's Anerly, near Penge, at Ditchingham Parish Church, Norfolk, at All Saints Church, Plumpton Green, near Lewes, Sussex, and on a plaque honouring 500 nurses who lost their lives in WW1 in Edinburgh Central Library. On 2nd July 1920 a memorial bronze plaque was unveiled at Colindale hospital.
Here is the link to the book’s website: www.halfshillingcurate.com
The photograph, from Sarah Reay's private collection, is reproduced in "The Half Shilling Curate" on page 175.
Sunday, 1 July 2018
Book Review by Historian Debbie Cameron: “British Widows of the First World War: The Forgotten Legion” by Andrea Hetherington
“This book is packed with info about various committees, social history and personal stories to tempt a researcher. The first one I followed up was tragic. Sybil Griffin, widowed aged 18, shot herself 6/11/17. Her mother found her, her last words being “I have done for myself. I am going to Cecil” Her suicide note said her World was empty. But ended “… cheer up, your loving daughter”. I’ve found her husband’s RFC record card and researched him. He died in an aircraft accident in October 1917 aged just 23. Capt Griffiths died in a flying accident in Kenley UK. He initially survived but died of wounds. The aircraft is noted as being a ‘right (sic) off’. They were married for less than a year by special licence as she was just 17. Tragic.”
Historian Debbie Cameron runs an excellent Facebook Page called 'Remembering Women on the Home Front WW1' which you can find via this link: https://www.facebook.com/groups/1468972083412699/ Debbie also contributes a great deal of material to the Imperial War Museum's Lives of the First World War Digital Memory Project: https://livesofthefirstworldwar.org/
For further details about fantastic Pen and Sword military history books, please see their website https://www.pen-and-sword.co.uk/
Saturday, 23 June 2018
Tuesday, 12 June 2018
Book Review: “Sister Poppy at the Front” by Brenda Gostling and Mik Richardson (Brenda Gostling, Norwich, 2018)
I love the simplicity of the story told about the nurse, her duties in France, the conditions in which she worked and how she felt. Finding her brother is the sort of coincidence that did happen. Brenda includes brief details of a Base Hospital, a Casualty Clearing Station and a Hospital Train. The illustrations really help to set the scene. I particularly liked the illustration of Poppy’s QAIMNS tippet hanging in the cupboard on the first page and are they badgers who are stretcher bearers?
Reading the book took me back to my own primary school days when our headmistress often read us stories about a resourceful rabbit, and to my earliest introduction to the history of the First World War. I vividly remember, as a very young child, looking at Grandfather’s black and white framed print of Fortunino Matania’s “Goodbye Old Man” and wondering what happened to the horse. To my mind, it is vital to educate young children about our history and to ensure individual stories are recorded. It is also good to find a book that describes the women of WW1 who contributed so much but who have been overlooked for so long. My family always commemorated the First World War but it was not until I began researching in 2012 for a series of commemorative exhibitions about the conflict, that I realised the full involvement of women.
A share of any profits from the sale of “Sister Poppy at the Front” will go to the East Anglian charity Break, which runs children’s homes and also provides breaks for children and young people with disabilities and their families.
Some time ago, I heard of an initiative in Australia whereby people sponsor small teddy bears dressed in WW1 military uniforms, which are sent to primary schools to help educate children about Australia’s involvement in the conflict. Brenda tells me that a Norwich firm of Independent Financial Advisers – Almary Green - who were the sponsors of the Poppy GoGoHare sculpture - have kindly purchased a copy of the book for every primary school in the county of Norfolk – a total of 355 books. Definitely an initiative to copy.
“Sister Poppy at the Front” £6.99, written and published by Brenda Gostling with illustrations by Mik Richardson. Further details from http://www.brendagostling.co.uk/
Note: The QARANC (as the QAIMNS has become) explain: “Brenda and Mik have amalgamated the uniforms of the Queen Alexandra's Imperial Military Nursing Service and the Voluntary Aid Detachment to form the uniform as worn by Sister Poppy who nurses on a ward at No. 33 Casualty Clearing Station.”
Photos: Brenda and Mik with the book and a cuddly hare in a nurse's uniform made by Mik's wife to accompany Brenda and Mik on promotional visits.
Lucy London, 12th June 2018
Monday, 4 June 2018
Eleanor Eileen Black, VAD and Dorothea Kathleen Mary Bolus, South African VAD, who drowned on 4th June 1918
Remembering Volunteer ELEANOR EILEEN. BLACK, a volunteer with the Voluntary Aid Detachment who drowned at sea from Royal Mail Ship RMS “Kenilworth Castle” on 4th June 1918. Eleanor was daughter of Randlord Black, of Queen's Road, Parktown, Johannesburg. Eleanor is remembered in York Minster, York, UK on the Panel commemorating the South Africa Army Nursing Service and on Hollybrook Memorial in Southampton, Hampshire, UK.
Remembering Volunteer DOROTHEA KATHLEEN MARY BOLUS of the South African Voluntary Aid Detachment, a passenger on the RMS “Kenilworth Castle”, who drowned on 4th June 1918. Dorothea was daughter of Mrs. Louise Bolus, of "Maisonnette," Kenilworth, Cape Town, South Africa. Dorothea was buried in Plymouth’s Efford Cemetery, in Devonshire, UK - Grave Reference: Church. C. 4785.
The Royal Mail Ship “Kenilworth Castle” was one of the first mail ships commissioned for the Union-Castle Shipping Line. Built at Harland and Wolfe, Belfast in 1903, she was launched in 1904 and requisitioned as a troop carrier during the First World War. The ship was in a convoy sailing to Britain. It was dark and they had to sail without lights to avoid detection by German submarines. 35 miles off Portsmouth, two of the Royal Navy escort ships were in collision - HMS “Rival” and HMS “Kent”. Depth chargers from “Rival” exploded under the “Kenilworth Castle”, which was badly damaged. The order was given to abandon ship. Some of the life boats were lowered but became swamped and 15 people were drowned, among them Eleanor Black and Dorothea Bolus. The RMS “Kenilworth Castle” eventually reached Portsmouth, where the remainder of her passengers were put ashore. The ship was repaired, went to sea again after the war and was broken up in 1936.
Here is an extract from a letter from Nurse Bracken, one of the nurses who survived in which she described the incident: “I'm sending you one of our newspaper accounts of the affair because it describes what happened to the lifeboat in which Black, Bolus, a Wynberg girl called Zondendyk, and myself were. When the boat capsized I managed to hang on to the side and hung and hung until the boat righted itself but it was the most ghastly few minutes I ever lived through. I remember a big dark wave washing right over me and something - an oar, I think, pressed against my throat until I thought I should choke and something else crushed my eye against the boat's edge and I saw stars and felt my eyeball must burst. My corsets were torn right off me and my legs were bruised and bleeding. Then the boat righted itself and I found myself inside. There were just two of us left, the other a fellow passenger named Dawson and his pyjamas were simply tom to rags! Our boat was quite full of water and we had lost our oars and rudder.
We didn't see or hear anything of the others then and were drifting right away until the Kenilworth turned and her wash brought us rushing back. I really thought that was the very end but we did a surprising turn and instead of crashing into her we rushed along her side and crossed her stern so close that Mr Dawson was struck in the mouth and his teeth knocked out. Then we got out on the other side and that was the last we saw of the Kenilworth. It was horribly dark and we could hear the dreadful calls for help from men and women in the water but could not get near to them. Two women drifted right up to the boat and these were saved. One was the young wife of a Colonel of Marines - the other Nurse Zondendyk. I found a bucket and a scoop tied to the boat and these were used to bale out the water. Mr Dawson and I baled and baled until we were too tired to do any more but the boat felt almost respectable again so we all sat huddled together shivering and taking turns at being sea sick!”
Read more from Nurse ‘s letter here: http://samilitaryhistory.org/vol054kc.html
Original Source: Commonwealth War Graves Commission List of Female Casualties of the First World War
Additional information kindly supplied by Derek Walker : http://www.southafricawargraves.org/search/details.php?id=1862
Sunday, 3 June 2018
Alice is also remembered on a Memorial tablet in St Paul's Church Monk Bretton, in the Memorial book in St Paul's Church, Monk Bretton, on the War Memorial, Cross Street, Monk Bretton and on her mother's gravestone in Monk Bretton Cemetery
Photo of Alice’s grave from http://barnsleysoldiersww1.blogspot.com/2013/12/alice-hilda-lancaster-1883-1918.html
Original Source: Commonwealth War Graves Commission List of Female Casualties of the First World War
Thursday, 31 May 2018
BLETCHLEY CEMETERY, Buckinghamshire, UK
SAUNDERS, Worker, (Assistant Cook), LILIAN. Queen Mary's Army Auxiliary Corps. 1 May 1918. Age 25. Daughter of Mr and Mrs J Saunders, of Fenny Stratford. Grave Reference: Spec. Memorial.
WARNOCK, Nurse, ELIZABETH McMATH (DAISY). 10th (Glasgow) Detachment attd. 8th General Hospital, Voluntary Aid Detachment. Died of septicaemia, 5th May 1918. Age 31. Daughter of William and Mary Malcolm Elizabeth Muir Warnock, of 19, Westminster Terrace, Glasgow, late of Holytown, Lanarkshire. Buried St. Sever Cemetery, France, Grave Reference: Officers, B. 4. 23.
STREATHAM CEMETERY, London, United Kingdom
LATHAM, Forewoman, LOUISA FRANCES, 37124. Depot, Tank Corps (Wareham), Queen Mary's Army Auxiliary Corps. Died of sickness, 7 May 1918. Age 39. Daughter of George and Catherine Latham, of
BASRA MEMORIAL, Iraq
HOBBES, Sister, NARRELLE. Queen Alexandra's Imperial Military Nursing Service. Buried at sea, 10 May 1918. Age 37. Daughter of the late J.F. and Margaret Hobbes of New South Wales, Australia. Grave Reference: Panel 43.
BIRMINGHAM (LODGE HILL) CEMETERY, Warwickshire, UK
Staff Nurse, BEATRICE GEORGINA FREDERICA FORBES of the Territorial Force Nursing Service, who died on 12th May 1918. Beatrice was buried in Birmingham Lodge Hill Cemetery in Warwickshire, UK - Grave Reference: Screen Wall. B10. 2. 225.
MIKRA BRITISH CEMETERY, KALAMARIA, Greece
Staff Nurse, MARGARET ELLISON DUCKERS of the Queen Alexandra's Imperial Military Nursing Service, who died on 16th May 1918 at the age of 25. Margaret’s parents were James Samuel and Jane Duckers, of "Edencroft," Wetheral, Carlisle. She was buried in Mikra British Cemetery, in Kalamaria, Greece - Grave Reference: 254.
EDINBURGH (WARRISTON) CEMETERY, Edinburgh, UK
Remembering Assistant Administrator (equivalent to the male rank of Officer) MARJORIE TRAILL MARTIN, Service No. O/1144, of the Queen Mary's Army Auxiliary Corps, who died on 17th May 1918 at the age of 26. Marjorie’s parents were the Rev. Alexander Martin, D.D. (Professor of Theology and Principal of New College, Edinburgh), and Jane Thorburn Martin. Marjorie was buried in Warriston Cemetery, Edinburgh - Grave Reference: K. 150.
ETAPLES MILITARY CEMETERY, Pas de Calais, France
MACDONALD, Nursing Sister, KATHERINE MAUDE MARY MACDONALD of the 1st Canadian Gen.eral Hospital. Katherine was with the Canadian Army Nursing Service. She was killed in action on 19th May 1918 at the age of 31. Her parents were Mary Maud and Angus Macdonald, of Brantford, Ontario, Canada. Katherine was buried in Etaples Military Cemetery, Pas de Calais, France, where you will find 19 other women who died in WW1. Katherine’s Grave Reference for anyone visiting Etaples Military Cemetery is XXVIII. L. 8.
20th May 1918
ST. ARILDA'S CHURCHYARD, Oldbury, Gloucestershire, UK
Phoebe Elizabeth MEADOWS, a VAD with the Territorial Force Nursing Service. Born 1889 died 20th May 1918. Phoebe’s parents were Charles and Phoebe Elizabeth Meadows. She was buried in St Arilda's Churchyard, Oldbury, Gloucestershire. Grave reference:B14.
ETAPLES MILITARY CEMETERY, Pas de Calais, France
Nursing Sister, GLADYS MAUDE MARY WAKE of the 1st Canadian General Hospital. Gladys was with the Canadian Army Nursing Service. She died of wounds received during an airraid by enemy aircraft on 21st May 1918 at the age of 34. Gladys’s parents were Gervas Fountayne Wake and Amy Rosamond Wake, of Compton Hill, Malvern, Worcestershire, UK. Gladys was born in Esqlaimault, British Columbia, Canada. She was buried in Etaples Military Cemetery, Pas de Calais, France , where you will find 19 other women who died or were killed during the First World War. The Grave Reference for Gladys Maude Mary Wake is XXVIII. L. 5.
TRURO CEMETERY, NOVA SCOTIA, Nova Scotia, Canada
Remembering Nursing Sister, JESSIE A. JARVIS of the Canadian Army Medical Corps. Jessie died of pneumonia on 23rd May 1918 at the age of 29. Her parents were George M Jarvis and Frances M. Jarvis, of 176, Bolsford St., Moncton, New Brunswick. Jessie was buried in Truro Cemetery, Nova Scotia, Canada. Grave Reference: L. 50. Div. C. Third grave from North end. I wonder if her grave receives any visitors?
RAWALPINDI WAR CEMETERY, Pakistan
Remembering Nurse RUTH MARY NODDER of the Territorial Force Nursing Service. Ruth died of sickness on 24th May 1918, at the age of 33. Her parents were the Rev. J. B. Nodder and Mrs. Nodder, of Ashover Rectory, Chesterfield, Derbyshire. Ruth was buried in Rawalpindi War Cemetery, which is in Pakistan. Grave Reference: 3. A. 6. I wonder if her grave receives any visitors?
ASH CEMETERY, Surrey, United Kingdom
Remembering Mechanic Driver, Florence EMBLETON of the Women's Legion, who died on 26th May 1918. Florence was born in Yorkshire in 1888. Her parents were John Embleton, a Captain in the Royal Army Ordnance Corps,and his wife, Sarah Embleton. Florence had a brother Charles, b. 1891 in Egypt where his father was based at the time, and John, born in 1896. Charles also joined the Royal Army Ordnance Corps, served in France during WW1 and died on 20th July 1916. Florence and her family lived in York in 1901 and in Ash, Surrey, at the time of her death. During WW1 Florence initially served as a clerk and then nursed in Aldershot Hospital. Florence joined the Women’s League in 1917 and was a Motor Driver with No. 52 Motor Transport Corps, Army Service Corps, attached to the Army School of Sanitation. She was buried with full military honours in Ash Cemetery, Ash, Surrey, UK, Grave Reference: F. 15-1. Source: CWGC List of Female Casualties of the First World War and http://www.ashmuseum.org.uk/embleton.htm
ETAPLES MILITARY CEMETERY, Pas de Calais, France
Remembering Nursing Sister Margaret LOWE of the 1st Canadian Gen. Hosp., Canadian Army Nursing Service. Margaret was badly injured a German air raid on Etaples and died on 28th May 1918 at the age of 32. Her father was Thomas Lowe, of Binscarth, Manitoba, Canada. Margaret was buried with full military honours in Etaples Military Cemetery, Pas de Calais, France. Grave Reference: XXVIII. M. 9.
29th – 30th May 1918
The night of 29th - 30th May 1918 was particularly bad, as there were several German bombing raids on non-military targets such as hospitals. In spite of the hospitals being clearly marked with Red Crosses and situated some way away from the Front, they were still bombed by enemy aircraft. The diary of No.3 Canadian Stationary Hospital records: “The night was clear and bright. There should have been no difficulty in the airmen recognising it as a hospital. The hospital is well marked with red crosses, which airmen say are quite visible from the air. There is no doubt that the occupants of the aeroplane knew it was a hospital, for when the came back and dropped bombs a second time, the flames clearly illuminated the red crosses on the buildings.”
The women nurses, members of the QMAAC and volunteers killed during bombing raids on the night of 29th – 30th May 1918 were buried in the following cemeteries in France:
ABBEVILLE COMMUNAL CEMETERY EXTENSION, Somme, France
Worker (equivalent to the rank of Private) MARY McLACHLAN BLAIKLEY, 31503. Queen Mary's Army Auxiliary Corps. Mary was killed on 30th May 1918. She was a niece of Robert Blalkley, of Brown's Land, Cartcosh, nr. Glasgow. Grave Reference: IV. C. 4.
Worker BEATRICE V. CAMPBELL, 31673, of the Queen Mary's Army Auxiliary Corps. Beatrice was killed on 30th May 1918. Age 20. Daughter of the late John J. and Annie Morgan Campbell, of Cupar, Fife. Grave Reference: IV. C. 6.
Worker MARGARET SELINA CASWELL, 15703 of the Queen Mary's Army Auxiliary Corps. Margaret was killed on 30th May 1918 at the age of 22. Her parents were Fredrick and Mary Jane Caswell, of Green Cross Farm, Churt, Farnham, Surrey. Grave Reference: IV. C. 1.
Worker CATHERINE CONNOR 34767 of the Queen Mary's Army Auxiliary Corps. Catherine was killed on 30th May 1918. Grave Reference: IV. C. 9.
Worker JEANIE GRANT, 31918 of the Queen Mary's Army Auxiliary Corps. Killed by a bomb from an enemy aeroplane, 30 May 1918. Age 22. Daughter of Mrs. J. Grant, of "Burnfoot," Greengairs, Airdrie, Lanarkshire. Grave Reference: IV. C. 7.
Worker, ANNIE ELIZABETH MOORES, 15695. Queen Mary's Army Auxiliary Corps. Killed in aerial attack on Abbeville, 30th May 1918 at the age of 27. Annie’s parents were Alfred and Mary Moores, of Charlton Lane, Ludwell, Salisbury, Wiltshire, UK. Grave Reference: IV. C. 3.
Worker, ETHEL FRANCIS MARY PARKER, 9048. Queen Mary's Army Auxiliary Corps. Killed by a bomb at Abbeville, 30 May 1918. Age 21. Daughter of William George Parker, of 6, East St., Sturry Rd., Canterbury. Grave Reference: IV. C. 2.
Worker, ALICE THOMASSON, 35588. Queen Mary's Army Auxiliary Corps. 30 May 1918. Grave Reference: IV. C. 8.
WATSON, Worker, JEANIE H. L., 34864. Queen Mary's Army Auxiliary Corps. 30 May 1918. Age 25. Daughter of Mrs. J. Oliphant, of 21, Park St., Cambuslang, Glasgow. Grave Reference: IV. C. 5.
BAGNEUX BRITISH CEMETERY, GEZAINCOURT, Somme, France
Nursing Sister, D M Y. BALDWIN, of the 3rd Canadian Stationary Hospital, Canadian Army Nursing Service. 30 May 1918. Grave Reference: III. A. 24.
Nursing Sister, A. MacPHERSON, of the Canadian Army Nursing Service. 30 May 1918. Grave Reference: III. A. 26.
Nursing Sister, EDEN LYAL PRINGLE of the Canadian Army Nursing Service. Killed in enemy air raid, 30 May 1918. Age 25. Daughter of Mr. and Mrs. William Pringle, of 2030, 12th Avenue East, Vancouver, British Columbia. Grave Reference: III. A. 25.
ETAPLES MILITARY CEMETERY, Pas de Calais, France
STEVENSON, Civilian, BERTHA GAVIN (BETTY). Betty was a volunteer with the Young Men's Christian Association. She was killed when the aircraft involved in the air raid on Etaples on the night of 30th May 1918 jettisoned his bombs in a field as he returned to base., Betty was 21 years old and had been in France since the beginning of the war. She was awarded the Croix de Guerre avec Palme (France). Her parents were Arthur G. and Catherine Grace Stevenson, of Harrogate, Yorks. Betty was born in York. Grave Reference: XXVIII. M. 6. Betty is also remembered on Harrogate War Memorial.
30th May 1918
CAMBERWELL OLD CEMETERY, London, UK
Staff Nurse BERTHA VINTNER of the 2nd London General Hospital, a member of the Territorial Force Nursing Service. Bertha died on 30th May 1918. Daughter of Mrs. Vinter, of Wyndham Rd., Camberwell, London, UK. Bertha was buried in Camberwell Old Cemetery - Grave Reference: 101. 25354.
We will remember them
Source: The Commonwealth War Graves Commission List of Female Casualties of the First World War
Monday, 21 May 2018
Book Review: “A Lab of One’s Own: Science and Suffrage in the First World War” by Patricia Fara, published by Oxford University Press, Oxford, 2018.
This is an extremely important book, which, I think, should be required reading for all school pupils because women are still a long way from being treated as equals in our society. As Fara explains, she wrote the book because, in her view “… the main reason for studying the past is to understand the present – and the whole point of doing that is to improve the future.”
My family has commemorated the First World War for as long as I can remember – Grandfather was an Old Contemptible with the Royal Field Artillery, one Great Uncle was killed at Arras and another died at sea just 3 days before the Armistice. In spite of that, I did not realise the extent to which women were involved in the conflict until I began researching for a series of commemorative exhibitions in May 2012. Six years on and Fara’s book has really opened my eyes. I did not know about most of the women Fara has included and I also learnt a lot of other vital background information.
As a scientist herself, Fara, who, among other things, lectures on the history of science at Cambridge Unviersity, has a wealth of professional experience which is put to good use in researching this book - the bibliography alone is the most incredible work.
The book is divided into five sections – Preserving the Past, Facing the Future; Abandoning Domesticity, Working for the Vote; Corridors of Science, Crucibles of Power; Scientific Warfare, Wartime Welfare and Citizens of Science in a Post-War World. Each section has chapters with copious notes which refer you to the bibliography and there are also illustrations throughout.
I thoroughly enjoyed reading this book and it is extremely difficult indeed to pick out just one or two points of particular interst. However, I particularly enjoyed reading about: Rachel Costelloe and her fellow cricketers at Newnham College, Cambridge. Rachel became Mrs Ray Strachey, “one of Britains most prominent suffrage campaigners” (Chapter 1). Baden-Powell’s wife Olave, who took over the leadership of the Girl Guides during WW1, urging the girls to “prepare sandbags and collect spagnum moss” for dressing wounds. (p. 54). Nevinson’s “The Acetylene Welder” Lithograph of 1917, which is reproduced on page 85, looks incredibly modern and Mabel Elliott’s outstanding exploits as a member of the British Military Intelligence (p. 183) must have been kept secret for so long due to the Official Secrets Act.
According to Fara, in 1918 King George V said: “When the history of our Countrys share in the war is written, no chapter will be more remarkable than that relating to the range and extent of womens participation…. Some even have fallen under the fire of the enemy. Of all those we think today with reverent pride.” (p.271). I wonder what happened because, since then, that participation seems to have been largely forgotten and most people only remember the Tommies and the trenches – I don’t recall any mention of the women who died while serving. At least the Royal British Legion have amended their WW1 commemortive logo from “Every Man Remembered” to “Everyone Remembered”.
As Fara reminds us, there is no room for complacency in the 21st Century, as women still have a long way to go in the struggle for equality: “Before the First World War, suffragists could see what they were fighting against, but modern discrimination is elusive, insidious and stubbornly hard to eradicate.” (p. 285).
I urge you to read the book for yourselves. May I suggest it be dedicated to Malala Yousafzai?
Lucy London, May 2018
Thursday, 10 May 2018
Narrelle Hobbes (1878 - 1918) - Australian Nurse, member of the British Queen Alexandra's Imperial Military Nursing Service in WW1
Narrelle began her nursing course in 1903, qualifying in 1910. She was working in Brewarrina District Hospital when the war began and travelled to England on 20th February 1915 to enlist in the QAIMNS.
Narrelle was initially posted to Malta, then Sicily and then to No. 22 Stationary Hospital, Mesopotamia (now Iraq), in May 1916. She travelled via India where she worked briefly at Victoria War Hospital before continuing her journey to Basra. Posted to Amara, Narrelle was based at No. 32 British General Hospital.
Narrelle became ill in June 1917. After various treatments, she was finally diagnosed with Liver Cancer in February 1918. Her sister travelled to take Narrelle home but Narrelle died on board the ship taking the sisters back to Australia on 10th May 1918 - the Hospital Ship HMHS "Kanowna". She was buried at sea and is remembered on the Basra War Memorial in Iraq on Panel 43.
With many thanks to Vicki for her fantastic research.
Sunday, 29 April 2018
A poem dedicated to an unknown female war Worker of the First World War by Arundel James Kennedy Esdaile
“On a War-Worker, 1916” by Arundel James Kennedy Esdaile (1880 – 1956)
Far from their homes they lie, the men who fell
Fighting, in Flanders clay or Tigris sand:
She who lies here died for the cause as well,
Whom neither bayonet killed nor bursting shell
But her own heart that loves its native land.
From ““Cambridge Poets of the Great War: An Anthology” Michael Copp (Associated University Presses, London, 2001)
Arundel James Kennedy Esdaile was born in London on 25th April 1880. His parents were James Kennedy Esdaile and Florence Esdaile. His siblings were Emmeline, b. 1878, Everard, b. 1883, Millicent, b. 1884 and Percival, b. 1889. The family lived in Sussex.
Arundel was educated at Lancing School, Sussex and Magdalene College Cambridge. He worked at the British Museum Library. In 1907, Arundel married Katherine Ada McDowell, whose father was Secretary of the Girl’s Public Day School Trust. Arundel died on 22nd June 1956.
Friday, 27 April 2018
Wednesday, 25 April 2018
THOMPSON, Staff Nurse, ADA MILDRED. Australian Army Nursing Service. 1 January 1919. Grave Reference: Ang. A. 806. (GRM/6).
LUMLEY, Nurse, CORALE. Nursing Staff., New Zealand Voluntary Aid Detachment. 25 November 1918. Grave Reference: 22.
Saturday, 7 April 2018
Remembering two women who died on 7th April 1918: Edith Dorothy Pepper from Lincoln and Hylda Fanny M. Maclean from Warwickshire
Wednesday, 4 April 2018
Saturday, 10 March 2018
Remembering some of the women who died or were killed while serving in WW1 during the month of March 1918
Stewardess, E B. COCHRANE, of the S.S. "South Western" (Southampton), Mercantile Marine. Stewardess Cochrane was drowned, as a result of an attack by an enemy submarine, 16th March 1918 at the age of 46. She was born in Limerick, Ireland.
You can find out more about the sinking of the S.S. "South Western" here: http://forgottenwrecks.maritimearchaeologytrust.org/south-western
If anyone has any more information about these inspirational women of WW1, please get in touch.
Source: Commonwealth War Graves Commission List of Female Casualties of the First World War