A Nurse's Great War Album
- excerpts from a special book
NEWS - Soldiers of Oxfordshire (SOFO) website is well worth a visit- see Links near the foot of page 7.
The words and images included in this site are taken from an Album kept by an Oxfordshire-born Nurse during the years 1916-1919 when she worked at Gravesend Hospital. Soldiers from England, Scotland, Ireland, Wales, Canada and Australia recorded their various thoughts, sometimes by way of cartoons, sometimes poems or verses, some just wrote their "thank you". Others drew pictures and some their Regimental Badges. Others just signed the book or maybe recorded their addresses in the 'Roll of Honour'. The pictures above are of the inside pages with both her father's dedication and her brother's contribution.
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Contact has recently been made with the family of Kermilleau Hayden and his photo is shown below. His grand-daughter has told me a lot about what happened to Private Hayden and it can be summarised as follows:- "He was the eldest son of 6 boys, one older sister, their father died at age 42 when Kermilleau (who was called Monte, short for Montford by the family) was around 12 or 13. He enlisted, in 1915, when a call to serve went out in Nova Scotia, Canada,and being tall for his age, at age 14, used his middle name to enlist and lied about is age, although the rest of his life, he never told anyone what the K stood for, except his wife and my mother. I did not know it until recently, when I could put the story together, when I finally knew the middle name and did web research using it. I knew he had served in WWI but google web searches and Canadian record searches for Montford Hayden always came up empty, so the Nurse Harvey album truely provided to the family the only link we had into his service record. He fought in the trenches of France from 1916 until August or Sept 1918, when he was injured; he was holding onto a machine gun, and a bullet took off the middle finger of his right hand, ricocheted off the machine gun and hit the man next to him, in the neck I think, and killed his best friend immediately. We do not know that man's name, or the exact date of this event." So I now know why he was at Gravesend !!
This is Kermilleau's poignant entry in the Album:-
Pte W G Bloom was with
the 19th Canadians and his attestion papers were signed in Toronto 15th
July 1915. Born 25th March 1896 he was discharged due to his wounds 24th December 1916.
He died in 1977 but his grandchildren now know a little more of him thanks to this
The drawing below is credited to "Sgt L B" but no more is known of the artist. But it does seem to be a copy of a Bairnsfather original.
"Op out and get it Bill"
"Garn op out yerself"
Little is known about Nurse Kate Harvey, despite considerable research attempts and this site is dedicated to her and her patients, and is published with the wish to unite the descendants of those Soldiers with these snapshots of a time and place unique in history. A list of the identifiable Soldiers is contained on page 3, together with Regimental/Battalion detail where recorded. I have home addresses for many of these men to assist with verification. The illustrations contained on this site are varied from time to time and additional ones added.
Click here to jump to page 2. Pictures and details.
Click here to jump to page 3. List of Soldiers.
Click here to jump to page 4.....examples
Click here to jump to page 5.....more examples
Click here to jump to page 6.....Roll of Honour
Click here to go to my links and some personal memories
Also of interest....... Liverpool Medical Institution 'health' warning to Soldiers. All about Temptation. Plus a little more relating to the OBLI. Click here
Sorry but the Guest Book has had to be discontinued. The original Visitor counter has been removed. New items are being added as often as I can. Upgrade in progress October 2012 !