Thursday, July 31, 2014

On The Front Line

Nursing is an art... for what is the having to do with dead canvas or dead marble, compared with having to do with the living body, the temple of God’s spirit? It is one of the Fine Arts: I had almost said, the finest of Fine Arts.
~Florence Nightingale

Two things prompted today's post -- thinking about the medical personnel who have become ill while treating Ebola and reading The Great Influenza: The Epic Story of the Deadliest Plague in History by John Barry. Whether they are fighting illnesses such as influenza and Ebola or serving during wartime, nurses are always in a vital, vulnerable position.

Nurses in gas masks at the trenches in Germany
Courtesy of the National Library of Medicine

Interior of a ward on a British Ambulance Train in France
photo by David McLellan, National Library of Scotland

Dr. Frances Ivens at the Scottish Women's Hospital, Cloister of the Abbaye at Royaumont
by Norah Neilson-Gray

Nurses and Children during an air raid rehearsal in 1918

Before carrying out smallpox vaccinations, this public health nurse gives a lecture on the disease to schoolchildren
WHO photo by J. Abcede

One of the first parachute nurses
WHO/Red Cross photo

A taste of her own medicine
U.S. Library of Medicine

Achetez le timbre antituberculeux (Buy antituberculosis stamps)

Male Nurses- Life at Hackney Hospital, London, 1943

Anglīĭskai︠a︡ sestra miloserdīi︠a︡ v pokhodu

Date carta alla Croce Rossa / [E. Bonazzi]

Nurse wearing a mask as protection against influenza, September 13, 1918

The Emma Abbott, First Floating Hospital
by Julian Davidson

Australia World War II poster (Avenge the Nurses)


Keri said...

"And so avenge the nurses!" Great stuff collected here. In looking at history, I'm always intrigued by the role of women and how they persevered -- did she jump out of a plane wearing a *SKIRT*?!

Retta said...

A touching post. This made me think of the nurses in Hospice who cared for my Mom for several months before she left us. They were soooo compassionate, patient and kind to her. And when I cried from exhaustion and stress, they made me feel heard and understood, and accepted. They even kept in touch afterwards, and helped me with the grieving process. Such a gift, to be a nurse! I highly respect them.

HWY said...

These are great photos/art about a great profession.

Nursing is indeed a vital field, and it seems that they are becoming more and more the central figure in treating patients.

And I am in total awe of the parachute nurses!