Nursing in India, 1888

In March 1888 a group of British nurses arrived in India to help establish the Indian Army Nursing Service. They consisted of eight Nursing Sisters and were led by two Lady Superintendents, Miss Catherine Grace Loch and Miss Jessie Elizabeth Oxley.  Miss Loch and five of the Sisters, Rachel Angela Betty, Ellen Dobede Harris, Elizabeth Mary Lickfold, Martha Ella Maude Latch and Edith Welchman, were immediately deployed to Rawalpindi while Miss Oxley and the remaining Sisters were sent to Bangalore.

The photograph above was given to the Royal British Nurses’ Association (RBNA) in 1930 and shows Catherine Loch (seated, centre) and the other nurses in Rawalpindi shortly after they had arrived.  Unfortunately, we have not been able to identify which four of the five Sisters are in the picture.

All of these nurses, except Edith Welchman, were members of the RBNA and appear in our online database – Pioneering Nurses which has just been updated to include all the nurses in the RBNA register from the first entry in 1890 through to 1932.

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  1. Martha Ella Maud Latch was my GG Aunt. I have been researching my Latch family tree for many years, and was pleased to have come across this article and photo. I believe that the nurse standing in the right side of the photo, may well be my GG Aunt.

    1. Apologies for the belated response to your comment, Raymond – but happy to know that the article has contributed to your family research. Many thanks for sharing!

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