• Susan Ethel Greaves

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    • GREAVES, Susan Ethel – Staff Nurse, AVH & QAIMNSR
    • Posted by FrevFord, Thursday, 24 November 2016

    Born on the 1st of August 1877 in Newcastle, NSW – the daughter of John William and Sarah Ellen (nee Searle) GREAVES, who were married at Bowen, Nth Qld 2/8/1866 by Sarah’s father Rev Cooper Searle John had been born in 1841 at Ash Island, Hunter River – an Accountant, he was Secretary and Manager of the Newcastle Gas and Coke Coy; lived Qld and Mudgee for a few years – he died 5/7/1883, age 42, and was buried Sandgate Cemetery Sarah died 27/8/1918 at her residence in Ashfield, age 71, (formerly of Newcastle) Siblings: *John William Searle b.1867 Qld (employed by the Australian Agricultural Coy)– d.1939 Newcastle; *Arthur Henry b.1870 Qld – d.1951 Newcastle (all born Newcastle): *Charles Beaufort b.1872 – d.1961 Newcastle; *Ida Mary b.18/2/1875 (Nurse) – WW1: Matron, AVH and QAIMNSR – d.18/5/1954 Chatswood, NSW; *Annie Elizabeth (Bessie) b.1880 – marr James Robert LESLIE 3/3/1909 – d.1974; *Edith Eliza b.1882 – d.1965 Educated at Newcastle Superior Public School Trained in nursing at Newcastle General Hospital from 10th May 1900 to 1903 – leaving Newcastle Hospital on the 1st November 1903 Head Nurse 1903 – 1904; Matron July 1908 – 1911 at the Pipitea Pah Private Hospital, Newcastle – jointly run with Nurse E. Deane – all furniture and effects being auctioned off in July 1911 Susan sailed from Sydney 17/1/1912 on the Suevic and arrived in London on the 12/3/1912 where she was employed in Private Nursing She then left London 4/10/1913 on the Nevasa for Calcutta, and continued to nurse privately in India In 1915 she embarked on the Arabia at Bombay, and arrived back in London on the 24/4/1915 WW1: She then joined her sister Ida, matron of the Australian Voluntary Hospital (AVH) in France, from May 1915 until they were taken over by the War Office and renamed the 32nd Stationary Hospital – at which time she enlisted in Queen Alexandra’s Imperial Military Nursing Service Reserve (QAIMNSR) together with Ida and 21 of the other AVH nurses on the 1/7/1916. Susan continued her service at the 32nd Stationary Hospital until May 1917 – interrupted by 3 weeks sick leave from the 7/2/1917 to the 28/2/1917, following her admittance to hospital on the 26/1/1917 with inflamed fingers On the 7/5/1917 she was transferred to the 25th Stationary Hospital – and then sent to Abbeville on the 23/9/1917 to join the 22nd Ambulance Train on the 27/9/1917 – “bringing the sick and wounded from casualty clearing stations to base hospitals.” She “found the train life most interesting. It made her realise the distinction which had taken place, the devastation being almost beyond comprehension, especially on the battlefield on the Somme, where the train passed through miles and miles of ruin – only shell-holes and graves to mark where towns had once stood.” Granted Leave from 14/1/1918 to 2/2/1918, she then rejoined the Ambulance Train as they relocated to Italy on the 6/2/1918. Four months later on the 9/6/1918 they left Italy and arrived back in France on the 15/6/1918. War Diary – Matron-in-Chief Maud McCarthy 24.06.18 S/Nurse S. E. Greaves QAIMNSR Aus.: Reported to DGMS that S/Nurse Greaves, now serving on 22 Ambulance Train states that she expects to leave England for Australia on 30.6.18, when her contract expires. As this Train has only just returned from Italy, nothing is known of any correspondence on the subject, neither is she in possession of any papers authorising her to proceed to the United Kingdom. Asked that this might be reported to the War Office. 29.06.18 S/Nurse S. E. Greaves QAIMNSR Aus.: Received instructions from DGMS for this lady, now on 22 Ambulance Train, to proceed forthwith to the United Kingdom on expiration of contract, reporting on arrival to the Matron-in-Chief, War Office. Resignation will be accepted from date of arrival. Susan returned to England on the 1/7/1918, having resigned at the end of her contract with the QAIMNSR. The officer in charge of the Ambulance Train considered her to be a “thoroughly efficient nursing Sister.” She returned to Australia on the Medic, embarking 24/8/1918 and arriving back in Sydney in October 1918 Following her return home she volunteered for service again, but within the month the Armistice was signed. In early 1919 with the outbreak of Influenza, she was working with Dr J.R. Leslie, in control of a Public Inhalation Chamber that was reputed to kill any germs in a person’s air passages. Living in Newcastle till at least 1937, and Toronto from at least 1941 – where she was an Instructor in Home Nursing, and grew cabbages and grapefruit. Susan died on the 15th April 1964 at Hamilton, NSW (late of Toronto, NSW) Newcastle Morning Herald….(NSW), Sat 11 Jul 1908 (p.6): A PRIVATE HOSPITAL There was a large gathering yesterday afternoon, on the occasion of the formal opening of the private hospital which Nurse S Greaves and Nurse E. Deane have established at “Pipitea Pah,” the large two-storied house at the southern end of Zara-street. The spacious premises, which have recently been painted throughout, were inspected by the company, who found that the furnishings were in accordance with the requirements of an up-to-date hospital. The rooms are large and well lighted, and several have a direct view across the ocean and along the beach. The operating theatre is a splendidly-lighted apartment, fitted with enameled steel operating table, hot water installation, and all necessary accessories. The visitors expressed satisfaction with the arrangements of the hospital, and after afternoon tea had been served the gathering dispersed. The Newcastle Sun (NSW), Thur 17 Oct 1918 (p.3): The Social Circle Sister Susie Greaves arrived in Sydney this week after about three years’ active service in France, where she and her sister both did excellent work. Miss Greaves is a native of Newcastle, and received her training in the Newcastle Hospital. Newcastle Morning Herald….(NSW), Sat 26 Oct 1918 (p.6): CURRENT NEWS At the monthly meeting of the Red Cross Society, to be held in the social hall, King-street, on Monday afternoon next, Sister Greaves, who has returned from the front, will speak on Red Cross work. The Newcastle Sun (NSW), Tue 5 Nov 1918 (p.3): SISTER GREAVES May Return to War [Photo] Sister Susie Greaves, who recently returned from the front, received her training in the Newcastle Hospital, and was for some years doing private nursing. When war broke out she was nursing in India, and in May, 1915, joined the Australian Voluntary Hospital in France, where she nursed until July, 1916. Then the whole hospital unit was taken over by the British War Office, after which Sister Greaves nursed at Wimereaux, Boulogne Base and Rouen Base for eight months. She was also engaged on an ambulance train bringing the sick and wounded from casualty clearing stations to base hospitals. Four months of this time was spent in Italy, where Sister Greaves was bringing British troops down from the Italian front. Sister Greaves found the train life most interesting. It made her realise the distinction which had taken place, the devastation being almost beyond comprehension, especially on the battlefield on the Somme, where the train passed through miles and miles of ruin – only shell-holes and graves to mark where towns had once stood. What had once been a city was marked only by piles of ruins. Even in towns which had escaped absolute ruin there would be hardly a complete building. While in Northern France, early in 1918, it was impossible to get a night’s rest owing to the continuous air raids. What perhaps appealed most to Sister Greaves upon landing in Australia was the abundance of fresh food after having been on rations for so long in England and France. Sister Greaves has again volunteered for service. http://trove.nla.gov.au/newspaper/article/159363939 Newcastle Morning Herald and Miners’ Advocate (NSW), Mon 17 Feb 1919 (p.5): IN NEWCASTLE The Public inhalation chamber which has been installed by Mr R.S. Baker at the Victoria Theatre was considerably used on Saturday, and especially in the evening when several hundreds of people entered the chamber. The chamber was under the supervision of Dr J.R. Leslie, with Sister S. Greaves in direct control. Many of the audience went into the chamber purely out of curiosity, and others with genuine desire to inhale the vapour, which kills any germs which may be exposed in the air passages. Newcastle Morning Herald and Miners’ Advocate (NSW), Wed 12 Nov 1941 (p.5): Toronto N.E.S. Passes Following is a list of successful students in recent home nursing examinations at Toronto (Sister Susan Greaves, instructor; Matron Grahame, assisted by Sister Barton, of Wallsend Hospital, examiners) – ……………………………. Newcastle Morning Herald and Miners’ Advocate (NSW), Tue 5 Sept 1950 (p.4): Former Nurse Thinks Back Half Century [Photo] At a reunion of former nurses of Royal Newcastle Hospital yesterday afternoon, Miss Susie Greaves thought back half a century to her first year of training, in 1900. Another among the 60 guests was Miss Ida Greaves, of Sydney, who joined the hospital staff shortly after her sister. Miss Susie Greaves lives at Toronto, where she grows cabbages and grapefruit. She has not missed many of the annual reunions since they were inaugurated after the 1914-18 war by the Matron (Miss I.S. Hall). Others who travelled to the gathering……………………… http://trove.nla.gov.au/newspaper/article/134395120 Newcastle Morning Herald and Miners’ Advocate (NSW), Tue 2 Sept 1952 (p.4): Nursing Pioneers At Reunion A nursing sister who graduated from Royal Newcastle Hospital in 1903 was among those who attended the annual nurses’ reunion at the hospital yesterday. She is Miss Susan Greaves, of Toronto, who said she started her training at the hospital in 1900. “In those days a nurse graduated after three years,” she said. “We worked an average of 13 or 14 hours a day, with one day off a month. Our wage of 8/ a week included our uniform allowance. “The hospital was a two-storied building with about four main wards.” Miss Greaves worked at other hospitals in New South Wales and had three and a half years active nursing service in France during the first world war. She has now retired. The Sydney Morning Herald, 2 May 1964 (p.41): DEATHS GREAVES, Susan Ethel – April 15, 1964, late of Toronto, sister of John (deceased), Harry (deceased), Charles (deceased), Ida (deceased), Bessie and Edie, aged 86 years.