Nursing Sister’s Military Uniform (From the Collection #17)

The Story

More than 4000 women served as military nurses during the Second World War playing a vital role in the care and comfort of wounded soldiers, sailors, and airmen. As commissioned officers known by rank and title as Nursing Sisters, they served as fully-integrated members of the Royal Canadian Army Medical Corps, the Royal Canadian Navy, and the Royal Canadian Air Force. Most of them worked overseas in military hospitals and casualty clearing stations. After the lean years of the 1930s when there were few available positions for graduate nurses, even with the dangers of warfare, military nursing offered a job with a good salary, benefits, status, and a chance to travel.

This starched apron and blue working uniform belonged to Nursing Sister Miriam Hartrick (1909-2001) who served in England, France, and Italy during the Second World War. She graduated from the Kingston General Hospital School of Nursing in 1931. Topped by a long white veil, these distinctive uniforms made nursing sisters clearly identifiable.

The Specs

ACCESSION # (Web Link):002001085
Object Name:Nursing Sisters Military Uniform Apron
Manufacturer (Country):Corbett-Cowley (Canada)
Date Made:Circa 1939-1945
MESH Code:Clothing
MM= Clothing — uniform — World War II
Military Medicine
Military Medicine — textile
Military Medicine — army
Military Medicine — army — R. C. A. M. C.
Military Medicine — nursing
Military Medicine — Nursing Sisters
Military Medicine — Second World War — World War Two — WW2 — WWII
Military Personnel — nurse
Military Uniform — nurse

Additional Images

About “From the Collection”

“From the Collection” was a project originally published in 2010 to the Museum of Health Care’s website by former Curator Paul Robertson, with the goal being to highlight some the Museum’s most unique items that might be missed in our collection. Each artifact is presented as a bite-sized story, related information, and a link to it’s fully detailed entry on our free online digital catalogue!

Posts in the “From the Collection” series were originally created with support from Funded by the Ontario Museums and Technology Fund. The support of the Government of Ontario, through the Ministry of Tourism and Culture, is acknowledged.

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