Matron Ida Greaves - 'A Right Daughter of Australia'

Author(s): Christine M. Bramble; Brenda Thornley (Illustrator)


Matron Ida Greaves - 'a right daughter of Australia', is the biography of Matron Ida Mary Greaves RRC, 1875-1954, with special reference to her military service in WW1. Born in Newcastle NSW in 1875, Ida trained at Newcastle Hospital 1901-1904 then practiced her profession in Australia until 1910 when she went to England. She worked in private nursing until the outbreak of WW1 in August 1914, volunteering for service with the Australian Voluntary Hospital (AVH). The AVH was an independent unit sponsored by Rachel Lady Dudley, wife of William Humble Ward 2nd Earl of Dudley who was Governor-General of Australia 1908-1911. The staff of the AVH - the officers, other ranks and nurses - were Australians living in England at the time. The hospital was the first unit of any of Britain's dominions to report for duty in Europe. Ida arrived at Le Havre in France with the AVH on 29 August 1914 and was appointed Matron. The Commanding Officer was Newcastle surgeon Lieutenant Colonel William L'Estrange Eames. Ida served in France and Belgium for the duration of WW1 and was party to the early learnings about the management of casualties of trench warfare. She nursed casualties from the 1st, 2nd and 3rd Battles of Ypres, and casualties from the Battle of the Somme. In March 1918 she and the personnel and patients of the casualty clearing station in which she was then serving were forced to retreat under enemy fire during the German 'Operation Michael'. Ida Greaves was mentioned in dispatches three times. In July 1915 she was awarded the Royal Red Cross, a decoration for exceptional service in military nursing. She and a Sydney nurse were the first two Australian nurses to be decorated with the Royal Red Cross during WW1. Ida returned home to Newcastle in September 1919. She and another nurse opened a private hospital, 'Iluka', in Church Street Newcastle. She participated in social activities raising funds for returned servicemen and women, and was referred to as 'the senior war nurse of the district'. She moved to Sydney after retirement and died in 1954.


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Product Information

General Fields

  • : 9781649703941
  • : Christine Bramble - Self-Published
  • : Christine Bramble - Self-Published
  • : March 2021
  • : books

Special Fields

  • : Paperback
  • : Paperback
  • : Christine M. Bramble; Brenda Thornley (Illustrator)
  • : Christine M. Bramble; Brenda Thornley (Illustrator)