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Mary Laird

Date of Bith: 1870
Place of Birth: Glasgow

The Lairds were well-known in Glasgow as master carpenters and owners of a sawmill. By the turn of the century, the joinery firm George Laird founded in 1857 employed nearly 100 men and boys. He had nine children; four of his sons entered the professions of architecture, engineering and medicine. Thomas trained as a doctor in Glasgow, and became a major in The Royal Army Medical Corps. Others remained at the helm of the company, and one of them, Matthew, was apprenticed as a joiner. Matthew spent several years with the Queen’s Own Yeomanry at the start of the century. At the outbreak of war, aged 39, he re-enlisted, and became an officer in the Lowland Division of The Royal Engineers. In June 1915, his unit landed at Gallipoli, where he was promoted to captain. Mary choose to play her part in the war by joining the Scottish Women’s Hospitals as an orderly. Mary served with the Girton and Newnham unit. From May 1915 she served with the Girton and Newnham Unit at a field hospital at Chateau of Chanteloup, Troyes, France. Mary with a group of 7 other orderly’s used the chateau attic for accommodation remarked ” The Doctors dubbed us Orderly row, though they said we rather belied our name occasionally, up there we became the fastest of friends. We could trust each other implicitly and look for help and sympathy and encouragement in our most disgruntled moods”. That autumn, the French Expeditionary Force asked the hospital to accompany them to Greece and on to a field hospital in Serbia. During the voyage, Mary and Matthew met by chance in Malta, where Matthew was recuperating from an illness. It was probably the last time they saw each other: Matthew was evacuated to Egypt at the start of 1916 and died fighting at Kantara on 23 April. Mary returned home in April 1916.

Photo, When an ex-patient returned to the hospital in Troyes, France, Mary Laird was caught by chance in the background, emerging from the open-sided hospital kitchen. Credit: University of Glasgow Archive.

Many thanks to Morag Cross, who researched this information and provided the story.

Mathilde Augusta Lilian Laloe

Date of Bith: 1877
Place of Birth: Carmathen Wales

“Lilian” seems to have spent a fair amount of her youth moving from town to town. Her father Augustus Felix Laloe was a teacher and came from France. Lilian joined the Scottish Women’s Hospitals in January 1916. She joined the Girton and Newnham unit as a cook but quickly moved up the ranks to administrator. Lilian was described as hard working, a tough cookie but always full of fun. The roll of administrator was an important one, the hospital was located in Salonika, a hub of military hospitals and an important port during ww1. Malaria was one of biggest killers and tests but more often than not it was a day to day running of the hospital that caused the most problems. The location of the site was a constant niggle and when it rained the hospital was often flooded, personality’s clashed and fall outs common. The hospital due to the nature of war was often overstaffed and understaffed causing friction. In 1918 Lilian introduced a vegetable garden and farm yard, where they kept Pigs, Chickens and Geese, providing them with fresh food and work for when things were less busy. The hospital was moved up to Belgrade at the end of the war and Lilian went with them, returning home in February 1920. Lilian died in Bournemouth in 1956.

Jessie Clayton Lamb

Date of Bith: 1875
Place of Birth: Brechin

Jessie was born and grew up in Brechin, Angus. Her father James was a Linen manufacturer and lived at 22 Latch rd Brechin. In 1901 she was working as a nurse at Dundee’s Royal Infirmary and lived at Barrack rd Dundee. September 1915 jessie took the decision to head to the front and joined the SWH as a nurse. She sailed to Salonika and by train reached the city of Kragujevac. The hospital at Kragujevac had been operational since early 1915 and had endured many awful days and weeks. Typhus, starvation, battle wounds and dysentery all contributed to the horrendous conditions the unit worked under. For Jessie at the time of her arriving the hospital was handling 400 cases a day, all emergency dressings. The Chief Commanding Officer for the unit was Dr Elsie Inglis. Elsie had come to Serbia in April 1915 and touched the lives of many Serbians whom she treated and developed a strong reputation in the country. In October 1915, the SWH units in Serbia including Jessie had to evacuate from several of their locations as German and Austrian soldiers advanced. After evacuating once, Dr. Inglis refused to evacuate a second time and proceeded to remain to care for her patients in Krushevatz. When the German troops arrived, Inglis, Jessie and several other women with the SWH who had chosen to remain with the patients were taken as Prisoners of War. The women were released and returned to London on February 29, 1916.
Jessie died in 1965 in her home town of Brechin .

Isa Andrews Larnoch

Date of Bith: 1880
Place of Birth: Wick, Caithness

Isa grew up in the family home of Tolboth Lane Wick, her father Magnus was a railway porter. Isa joined the Scottish Women’s Hospital’s in July 1917 and went out to Royaumont Abbey near Paris. She served as a nurse. War had broken the tranquil and peaceful ambiance of the 13th century cistercian abbey. Royaumont Abbey north of Paris, France. The Abbey became during WW1 an all women hospital run by the Scottish Women’s Hospitals and by the end of the war had saved and aided thousands of lives. The women who served and devoted a slice of their life, helping mainly the French soldiers are remembered by plaques on the walls and in the grounds of the Abbey. March 1918 was an especially difficult time with the Germans pushing into the Oise valley. The outcome was a huge number of injured men. Streams of badly bombed cases were brought to the hospital, amputations were a daily occurrence and Isa would have worked around the clock fighting to save as many lives as possible. May brought more fighting the attack on the Chemin des Dames ridge began and more working from dawn till dusk. Air raids were constant and often the women were forced to operate under candle light. While all around them the shells raining down. ” wounded came in all night.The ward next to the x-ray department was a nightmare. Black blankets on the beds. On each men were dying, screaming, unconscious and delirious, the sister doing there work as best they can by way of lanterns” Isa remained at the hospital until December 1918.

She joined the SWH again in January 1919 where she headed to Sallanches, Haute-Savoie, France. Isa nursed at the Elsie Inglis Hospital for the Serbs.The hospitals was based at the used “Grand hotel Michollin” and operated from Feb1918-March 1919. Primarily to help Serbian boys suffering from Tuberculosis a huge problem in Serbia at the end of the war. Isa left the hospital in April 1919, she was awarded the British war medal, the victory medal and the French Red Cross medal.

Kate Latatche

Date of Bith: 1888
Place of Birth: Liverpool

Kate Latarche.

Kate Latarche was born on 5 January 1888 in Liverpool, Lancashire, her father, Constant, was 29 and was a shipping clerk. Her mother Marie Catherine Chargois was aged 31. Kate went on to study dentistry in Liverpool. Although at least 8 women had become members of the BDA between 1895 and 1913, having qualified LDS in the colleges in Edinburgh and Glasgow, the RCS in England did not admit women to the LDS diploma examination until 1908, Lily Pain being the first woman to qualify LDS, RCS, Eng in 1913. In the same year Kate Latarche became the first woman to graduate BDS, having taken the LDS earlier the same year. The admission of women to the profession was disparaged with a chauvinism similar to that expressed at the same time in regard to dental degrees as “a new institution – very few are well qualified”. Nevertheless, their admission would increase the potential dental workforce.

In May 1918 Kate joined the Scottish Women’s Hospitals as a dentist. She served in the Girton and Newnham unit and was stationed in Salonika. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Scottish_Women’s_Hospitals_for_Foreign_Service In April of 1919 she returned home. In 1921 she married Arthur Ramsden and in 1923 they had a daughter. In the 1930’s she was in Argentina.
Kate Latarche died in December 1969 in Manchester, Lancashire, when she was 81 years old.

Constance Lees

Date of Bith: 1887
Place of Birth: Staffordshire

Constance annie Lees was born in March 1887 in Chase Terrace,Lichfield, Staffordshire, her father, john worked in the local colliery. Her mother was Lavinia simkin.
In 1911 Constance Annie Lees was a working as a Hospital nurse and living at Blackmoor, Cannock Rd, Chase Terrace, Walsall.
Constance joined the Scottish Women’s Hospitals in May 1916 as a nurse. . She joined the Girton & Newnham Unit, so called after the enormous amount of funds generated and donated by the college.
Constance headed for Salonika where she joined her unit and the hospital which was entirely under canvas. At the time of joining, the hospital had up to 300 patients and due to a very hot summer that year a large amount of them were suffering form malaria and dysentery. Also during that summer Bulgaria was attacking and occupying parts of Macedonia. Although the heavy fighting would start in the autumn, fighting was underway and the wounded were brought to Salonika. The hospital mainly supported the Serb and French troops. . A huge hospital, one and a quarter miles long and had over 500 beds. The centre gained its name as it was supported and funded by the subscriptions from that city. A vast hospital with operating rooms and an X-ray room, a dental department, massage and mecano- therapy department, a pharmacy and a bacteriological laboratory were put in place. The hospital of course has a vast amount of storerooms, tents and huts for accommodation and workshops. There was even a small farm yard, effective when food was short or expensive. Constance spent the required six months in Salonika and returned home in November 1916.
She died in Sussex in 1946.

Clara Leighton

Date of Bith: 1889
Place of Birth: Aberdeen

Clara was born in Aberdeen in 1886, her father James was a church officer and held various jobs in the city. She came from a large family who all lived in the family home at 4 Esslemont Avenue.
By 1915 Clara was working as a nurse at Lochiel Auxiliary Hospital near Fort William. This was a hospital for the officers and based at Banavie. Prior to joining the Scottish Women’s Hospitals in 1916 she was working in Glasgow, possibly at the Victoria Hospital as she shared a home with her brother Robert on Victoria road.
In June 1916 she headed to war offering her services as a nurse joining the Scottish Women’s Hospitals.After signing on Clara sailed to Greece where she joined the all female hospital at the busy port of Salonika, this would be Clara’s work place and home for the next year and a half. The unit was named the Girton and Newnham unit as the Cambridge women’s colleges funded the unit. The unit had previously been in Troyes in France and was entirely under canvas. The hospital at Salonika was huge and could easily cope with 500 patients. Wooden buildings were also erected to cope with waves of troops arriving particularly during the summers of 1916 and 1917. The winters in Salonika were freezing and it was common for the nurses to wake up in their tents with their hair stuck to the pillows, a contrast to the summers. Perhaps the most challenging time at Salonika was in the summer of 1916. Before the war there was no malaria in Salonika, the marshy areas up north had few travelers during that time and the mosquitoes where confined to the that area. War meant vast amounts of movement and malaria became endemic. The hospital endured around 8 deaths per week, however most of the other hospitals in Salonika were reporting huge causalities. The heat in the summer of 1916 was fierce and the strain on the troops and hospital staff was enormous, much of the hospital staff became ill and two of the sisters died. Clara herself became unwell with dyspnoea. In August the fighting began as the Serbian and French began pushing the Bulgarians back. The work load for the hospital was just unbearable, with most of the staff dragging themselves from day to day. During her time in Salonika Clara also witnessed and assisted in saving of lives in what was know as the great fire of Thessaloniki in August of 1917 when nearly a third of the city went up in flames.
Clara returned home in October 1917, she was ill suffering from Tuberculosis. Clara moved from sanatorium to sanatorium. In 1919 she was in The Hydro in Kilmalcom, 1920 she was at Bridge of Weir, 1922 she was in Newcastle before moving to The Isle of Wight and in 1923 Clara was being cared for at Linford sanatorium in Ringwood at the New Forrest. She was awarded an annuity of £50 from the Scottish Womens Hospitals in December 1917, this seems to have been paid to her until 1923. She was awarded the payment as on her return the Doctors confirmed that Clara would not be able to work again. Her brother Robert also helped her financially. We have found a Clara Leighton who died at the sanatorium in 1923 and one would assume that they are the same person. Clara is remembered on a plaque at York minster abbey.

Lilian Ida Lenton

Date of Bith: 1891
Place of Birth: Leicester

‘Lillie’ Lenton was born in Leicester in 1891, the eldest of five children born to Isaac Lenton , a carpenter-joiner, and his wife Mahalah (née Bee) (1864–1920). On leaving school she trained to be a dancer, but, after hearing Emmeline Pankhurst speak, she ” … made up my mind that night that as soon as I was twenty-one and my own boss … I would volunteer”. On attaining that age, she joined the Women’s Social and Political Union, and with fellow members took part in a window-smashing campaign in March 1912. She was jailed for two months under the alias ‘Ida Inkley’.
During 1913-1914 Lillie was in and out of prison as she fought for the rights of women.
http://www.bbc.co.uk/archive/suffragettes/8322.shtml?all=2&id=8322 Well worth a listen.

Lillie joined the SWH in 1918 as an Orderly. She served with the American Unit in Serbia until 1919. After the Russian Revolution she travelled in Russia with fellow Suffragette Nina Boyle.Lenton later worked in the British Embassy in Stockholm. She was a speaker for the Save the Children Fund, and from 1924 to 1933 was a speaker and travel organiser for the Women’s Freedom League, as well as the editor of the League’s ‘Bulletin’ for over 11 years. After working in Scotland in animal welfare Lenton became the financial secretary of the National Union of Women Teachers until 1953.

In 1970, as Treasurer of the Suffragette Fellowship, Lenton unveiled a memorial in Christchurch Gardens, Westminster, dedicated to all the women who had fought to get the vote.

Lilian Lenton died in 1972. She never married

Mary Crockatt Leuchars

Date of Bith: 1873
Place of Birth: Dundee

Mary was raised in the family home outside Dundee, her father William was a farmer. She came from a large family and had 8 siblings. At the time of joining the Scottish Women;s Hospitals she was living at Longhaugh house, Dundee.

July 1915 Mary joined the SWH and went out to Serbia as an orderly. Three months after arriving at the hospital in Valjevo Mary’s war took a turn for the worse. By October Serbia was facing a sledgehammer. Austria, Hungary, Germany and Bulgaria were advancing with vigor. Serbia stood alone, out gunned, massively outnumbered and still in recovery from the typhus epidemic. Mary was forced to leave the hospital and with her unit headed down to Kruevac, a three day journey of over 100 miles in appalling conditions. Old men and women, young children and babies all caught in frozen wasteland. No shelter or food and the shells being dropped on them from above. Mary on arrival at Krusevac went straight to work and opened a dressing station in a couple of storehouses. Soon they were overflowing with casualties and soon after the voices of Austrian soldiers. Serbia had fallen. The women were now POW’s. In February the women were repatriated and by train were moved from Krusevac to Bludenz near the Swiss boarder for several weeks. Then on to Zurich, across France to Le Havre. By March they had docked at Southampton. An adventure but many of the women were heart broken at what had happened to the Serb’s. This was not the end of Mary’s war, in April 1916 she headed out to Corsica( pictured above) to continued her work as an orderly, again working with SWH and coming to the aid of the Serbs. She was transferred to Royaumont Abbey north of Paris and worked there until October 1916.
Mary after the war spent some time in Mozambique before returning to Old Glamis road in Dundee. She died in 1965, Mary never married.

Sybil Lonie Lewis

Date of Bith: 1874
Place of Birth: Chester, England

DR. SYBIL LONIE LEWIS, who died at Hull on March 1918 after a short illness, was born in 1874. She studied medicine in Edinburgh and Dublin, having previously been trained in nursing and midwifery, and obtained the TJ.R.C.P., L.R.C.S., and L.R.F.P.S. diplomas in 1905. After serving as assistant resident medical officer at the Larbert Asylum she began a practice in Hull, and held the appointment of school medical officer and the honorary medical officer ship of the Diocesan Maternity Home, the Hull Sheltering Home for Girls, and the West Hull,creche. In the spring of 1915 Dr. Lewis volunteered for work- in Valjevo, Serbia, and went out there in June under the Scottish Women’s Hospitals. She-was in Serbia when the country was overrun by the enemy and the hospital staff taken- prisoners in 1915. Although a Red Cross party, they were detained in Hungary for four months, under the roughest conditions, and were not released and sent home until February, 1916. Dir. Lewis went out again in August, 1916; and worked with the Serbian army in Macedonia and among the civilian refugees till December, 1917, when she was- recalled by urgent need at home.. She received the Serbian, decoration, of the Order of St. Sava. Fourth Class, in recognition: of’ her devoted work among the Serbs. Her illness lasted only three days, but, in the opinion of the surgeon attending her, the conditions causing it were contracted abroad, and her name must be added. to the growing list of medical women who have given their lives for Serbia.

Helen Lillie

Date of Bith: 1890
Place of Birth: Eday, Orkney Isles

In 1914 Helen qualified from Aberdeen University as a Doctor and was most distinguished winning the Gold Medal in Clinical Medicine. Working at Aberdeen’s Children’s Hospital and later on at Sheffield’s Royal Infirmary gave Helen the experience to go on to work with the Scottish Women’s Hospitals. Helen was a very experienced surgeon.
Dr Helen Lillie joined the Scottish Women’s Hospitals on the 15th of May 1917 and headed to Salonika to join her Chief Medical Officer  Dr Bennett as her new assistant. Salonika was huge hub of troops, cargo and various hospital units. Helen had joined the American unit and was sent up to Lake Ostrovo a field hospital of around 200 tents and supported the Serbian troops who were fighting the Bulgarians. The hospital was always lively, with the fighting close by the wards were at times full to overflowing. Helen would have dealt with not only wounds and casualties but malaria and dysentery  Dr Bennett herself being sent home suffering badly from malaria.. Helen and the other 60 women were severely tested as the camp was often under attack from the air. Incredibly the women during these attacks would choose to work on, showing tremendous courage and fortitude. The fact they refused to go to the air raid shelters and instead carry on with the operations shows the great determination the women had to succeed whatever the cost.  Helen was described as “very likable, fond of walking(something she loved doing when not working) and a very good surgeon. 
In November 1917 she returned home but by February 1918 was back working with the SWH at Royaumont, France where Helen spent the next 10 months as an invaluable and hard working Doctor and surgeon.

I have added a link that goes into the family background. http://rbg-web2.rbge.org.uk/bbs/activities/field%20bryology/FB97/FB97%20Lawley.pdf

Jean Marjorie Lindsay

Date of Bith: 1892
Place of Birth: Adelaide australia

Jean’s mother Martha was an Australian and her father William Henry Lindsay was a farmer from Chirnside Berwickshire, how they met and married is unknown at this time. Jean was raised on mains farm Chirnside and was also working on the farm. She left the family home and moved Plenderguest Cottages Ayton Berwickshire. Jean in March 1916 elected to head to Royaumont Abbey near Paris, where she worked as an orderly. Orderly’s took on all hard and often unpleasant work, mopping up blood and carrying stretchers up and down flights of stairs, were very much normal day to day choirs. Margaret volunteered to do this work as orderly’s were not paid, only board and lodgings were paid for along with the uniform. Margaret went through some very tough times at the Abbey, including The Battle of the Somme, when she would have worked day and night carrying the wounded from ward to ward. Jean returned home in September 1916 but went back to Royaumont in 1918, again working as an orderly from March to September.

Photo above is of Plenderguest cottages Ayton.

Alexandrina Linton

Date of Bith: 1883
Place of Birth: Edinburgh

Alexandrina grew up in the family home in Edinburgh, her father John was a joiner. Alexandrina trained and qualified as a nurse at Oldham’s Royal Infirmary.
She joined the Scottish Women’s Hospitals in November as a nurse in 1914, under the command of Dr Alice Hutchinson took charge of the first SWH unit on the 1st of November 1914 at Calais, France. At that point the Belgian wounded were streaming in after heavy defeats at the hands of Germany. Shortly after typhoid broke out, on the 5th of December she wrote “During the first week here I felt I could hardly bear the sights in the ward, and that, in spite of the fact that i been through it all before. Fortunately there are few things one cannot get accustomed to”
With the epidemic at an end in March, Alice and her band of 15 doctors and nurses returned to the UK. They were only home for a short time when she would again team up with Dr Alice Hutchinson only this time heading to Valjevo in Serbia. Valjevo during that winter gone through its own personal hell, thousands of its citizens and thousands of soldiers had perished in a typhus outbreak that was destroying huge parts of Serbia. Valjevo had itself been turned into one large field hospital and many, many men lay wounded and untreated due to the lack of Doctors and nurses. The town had been occupied a few months earlier by the Austrians who left it in a filthy state and typhus rampaged its way through the town and neighboring villages. The first batch of patients were mixed medical and surgical cases. Soon Typhoid fever appeared and after that, ward after ward were full. By late October 1915 Belgrade had fallen and Serbia was forced into retreat, Dr Alice Hutchinson’s unit refused to leave and short spells at Vrinjacka Banja and Krushevac when they organized dressing hospitals they were eventually taken as prisoners of war. Alexandrina for her own reasons decided to leave her unit and join a party of Scottish Womens Hospital members making their way home by joining the Serbian retreat. The retreat as witnessed by Alexandrina and her band of women was an endless procession of men, women and children, a beaten nation, attempting in the frozen depths of winter with very little or no food and poorly clothed to trek for weeks covering hundreds of miles over the Albanian and Montenegrin mountain. Hundreds of thousands of Serbians poured like blood from the heart of the motherland. Estimates state that well over 250,000 men, women and children died, killed or were lost along the way. History has few parallels to this mass exodus. Alexandrina with around 20 other SWH members after 7 weeks walking through the snow and mountains finally made to the Adriatic sea, where they were taken by ship to Brindisi in Italy before making their way home. On the 23rd of December they were home, however they too had suffered as Caroline Toughill was killed on the mountains of the Ibar valley. There is still a monument at Mladenovac today and each year hundreds of people gather to pay their respects for the bravery shown by Nora and her unit.
In 1920 Alexandina was assistant matron at Wakefield Hospital and in 1960 she died back in her home city of Edinburgh.

Dorothy Littlejohn

Date of Bith: 1878
Place of Birth: Edinburgh

Born in 1878 in Edinburgh and lived at 24 Royal Circus Edinburgh.
Dorothy Littlejohn was a trained cook who had graduated from the Edinburgh College of Domestic Science when she decided to offer her services to the war effort.
The daughter of medical pioneer Sir Henry Littlejohn, the first Medical Officer for Health in Edinburgh, she didn’t share her father’s views on the value of women doctors and didn’t even approve of the suffragette movement – instead deciding to perform the more “womanly” duties of cooking for the hospital.
At 38, she was one of the oldest volunteers at the Abbey when she headed to Royaumont in 1914. After joining the contingent of Doctor’s , nurses orderly;s, etc at Edinburgh’s train station they headed down to Folkestone and over the channel to Boulogne, an eventful crossing due to storms. Dorothy worked in the large kitchens as a cook. A time of setbacks, equipment not arriving on time and not enough time to get the hospital ready led to the French Red Cross unable to pass the hospital ready to take patients. A huge blow and a massive disappointment to all the women that had worked around the clock. Dorothy decided it best for all concerned if she left after her six month contract was up. Dorothy was well liked among the orderly’s and was presented with a travelling clock. “to the hand that fed us, orderlies”

Dorothy Logan

Date of Bith: 1888
Place of Birth: Dublin.

Dorothy Cochrane Logan

Dorothy was born in Dublin in 1888. She studied medicine in London and gained her MD in 1916. Dorothy joined the Scottish Women’s Hospitals in April 1918. For the next two months she worked as a Doctor at Royaumont Abbey, outside Paris. She had experience in Obstetrics and gynecology, which was standard for most of the women Doctors at that time. However Royaumont was not a good experience for Dorothy. Endless arguments with staff about the work, salary and various other grievances shortened her vocation at Royaumont. On June 1918 she was dismissed. After the war she became, president of the Travelling Medical Board of the Queen Mary Auxiliary Army Corps. In 1927 a bizarre story unfolded Dorothy Cochrane Logan, a harley street Doctor jumped into the water at Cape Gris Nez in France, aiming to swim the English Channel. Thirteen hours later she arrived at Folkestone, setting a new world record. Unfortunately, it turned out the swim had been a hoax: for most of her journey, she’d been on a boat. The News of the world had already paid her the £1000 reward money and poor Dorothy ended up in court. Fined for perjury she returned the bounty.

Dorothy died in New Zealand in 1961

Hilda Lockhart Lorimer

Date of Bith: 1873
Place of Birth: Edinburgh

Hilda Lockhart Lorimer, “Highland Hilda” (1873–1954), classical scholar, was born at 38 India Street, Edinburgh, on 30 May 1873, the eldest daughter of the Revd Robert Lorimer (1840–1925), minister of the Free Church of Scotland at Mains and Strathmartine, Forfarshire, and his wife, Isabella Lockhart Cornish Robertson (1849–1931). She was the second of eight children. She was educated at Dundee high school and, 1889–93, at University College, Dundee, earning a first-class BA (London).
She signed up as an orderly on the 4th of April 1917 and headed to Salonika where she joined the Girton and Newnham unit under Dr Anne McIlroy. The hospital was a large under canvas hospital and had been mainly used to support the Serbs and allied troops pushing back into Serbia. Most of the work at that time involved nursing malaria patients, Hilda remained in Salonika until September 1917 when she left the service.In 1920 she took her M.A. degree at Oxford, taught Homeric archaeology, and in 1922 she returned to Greece to work on the Mycenae excavations, and in 1931 she worked on the excavations at Aetos in Ithaca. In 1934 she excavated in Zakynthos and at Akroterion. Publishing widely, she died in 1954, “a brave spirit and one of the most learned and remarkable women of her generation.”

Caroline Victoria Lowe

Date of Bith: 1882
Place of Birth: Belfast, Northern Ireland

Caroline Lowe was born in Belfast, Northern Ireland to a middle class protestant family. Her father came from near Manchester and her mother was part of a Northern Irish Methodist family. She had 4 sisters and 1 brother.

Carrie(as she was known to the family) did her medical training in Belfast putting up with considerable prejudice from male medical students. She qualified in 1909 and worked initially in a hospital post in Dublin Children’s Hospital.

In 1910 she went to Mysore in India. Her sister Charlotte and brother in law Rev Ernest Redfern, a Methodist Missionary, had raised money to open a hospital. He died before the opening of the hospital, but it was named after him and still exists.

During the hospital’s Diamond Jubilee in 1966, Caroline sent comments about those years to ‘The Hindu’ newspaper, talking about starting off at night in a bullock cart and undertaking minor operations in a tent. This would have been good preparation for her later period with the SWH.

In 1916 she returned to the UK and undertook post graduate courses, before joining the Girton and Newnham Unit of the Scottish Women’s Hospital working in Salonika. A picture of her at that time (far left front row) is attached. She never talked about that period of her life, though she did have a Red Cross watch which was said to have come from her time in Salonika.

She returned to England in 1917 and worked in hospitals in East London, Sheffield and Newcastle with a period back in Belfast to taker her M.D. degree.

In 1921 she settled in Birkenhead, Merseyside, working as a GP in the area until she retired in 1959. She remained an active Methodist and shared her house with her mother, who had been widowed, until the latter’s death at the age of 90. She then shared the house with another sister Mary Harriet (known as Min), my grandmother. She had also married a Methodist Missionary, who had died in 1937.

Our family also shared her house when we were teenagers, (It was a big house). She was obviously well thought of as a local GP but I had no idea of her previous activities in India or Salonika until comparatively recently.

She died in 1981 after suffering from dementia for a number of years.

Margaret Lucas

Date of Bith: 1880
Place of Birth: Hertfordshire, England

Margaret Priscilla Tindall Lucas
Born in Hitchin, Hertfordshire In 1880
Her father William He held the office of Justice of the Peace. Her mothers name was Frances Augusta Farmer.
In October 1914 she worked at the Cottage Hospital at Hitchin for Yorkshire Hussars. In May 1915 – Oct working at the B.R.C. Hospital Netley. From Oct 1915 to Sept.16 employed at the Cottonera Military Hospital Malta. And between March 1917 to March 1918 she was on the staff at Cosham Military Hospital Portsmouth.
In March 1918 she joined the Scottish Women’s Hospitals and headed to Royaumont Abbey 30 miles outside Paris. From January 1915 to March 1919 the Abbey was turned into a voluntary hospital, Hôpital Auxiliaire 301, operated by Scottish Women’s Hospitals(SWH), under the direction of the French Red Cross. On arrival the staff found that the buildings were in a deplorable condition. They were dirty; there was a shortage of practically every amenity that they would need to run an efficient unit. There were no lifts; water had to be carried to where it was needed. Eventually, after much hard work the hospital was eventually given it certificate by the Service de Sante of the French Red Cross. Their work was unremitting, the winters bitter and I was left with unstinting admiration for this very gallant band of doctors, nurses, orderlies ambulance drivers, cooks, who gave so much to their patients throughout the war. The hospital was situated near the front line and nursed 10,861 patients, many with serious injuries. The fact that the death rate among the mainly French servicemen was 1.82% is a testimony to the skill, endless compassion and boundless energy shown by the women. Margaret was employed as an orderly. With 600 bed Royaumont was the largest voluntary hospital in France, its remembered for the incredible endeavours during the battles of the Somme and the final push of 1818. Margaret left the service in September 1918.

She never married and died in Hertfordshire In 1954.

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