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Florence Nightingale: Extending Nursing

Collected Works of Florence Nightingale, Volume 13

Lynn McDonald

Publication Year: 2009

Although Florence Nightingale is famous as a nurse, her lifetime’s writing on nursing and to nurses is scarcely known in the profession. Nursing professors tend to “look to the future, not to the past,” and often ignore her or rely on faulty secondary sources.

Volume 12 related the founding of her school at St Thomas’ Hospital and her guidance of its teaching for the rest of her life. Volume 13, Extending Nursing, relates the introduction of professional training and standards outside St Thomas’, beginning with London hospitals and others in Britain, followed by hospitals in Europe, America, Australia and Canada. Also presented is material on work in India, Japan and China. The challenge of raising standards in the tough workhouse infirmaries is reported, as is Nightingale’s fostering of district nursing. A chronology in this volume provides a convenient overview of Nightingales work on nursing from 1860 to 1900. Both volumes give biographical sketches of key nursing leaders.

Published by: Wilfrid Laurier University Press

Series: Collected Works of Florence Nightingale

Title Page, Copyright

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pp. v-vi


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p. vii-vii

List of Illustrations

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p. viii-viii

Dramatis Personae

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pp. ix-x

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Florence Nightingale: A Précis of Her Life

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pp. xi-xiv

Florence Nightingale was born in Florence, Italy, 1820, the second daughter of wealthy English parents taking an extended European wedding trip. She was raised in England at country homes, Lea Hurst, in Derbyshire, and Embley, in Hampshire. She was educated largely by her father, who had studied classics at Trinity College, Cambridge. At...

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An Introduction to Volume 13

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pp. 1-22

Extending Nursing takes up the story of Nightingale’s work on trained nursing from its beginnings at St Thomas’ Hospital in London in 1860, of her mission to improve nursing everywhere it was possible to do so. Here we see the extension of trained nursing first to other hospitals in London, next throughout England and Wales, and then into Scotland and Ireland. Matrons trained at...

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Key to Editing

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pp. 23-26

All the manuscript material in the Collected Works has been carefully transcribed and verified (see Life and Family Appendix E: Research Methods and Sources for a description of the process of obtaining and processing this information). Illegible words and passages are so indicated, with [illeg] or [?] inserted to indicate...

Extending Nightingale Nursing in Hospitals

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London Hospitals

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pp. 27-195

Over the course of Nightingale’s life, St Thomas’ trained nurses went out as nurses and some as matrons to the major London hospitals.1 Nightingale looked for opportunities to improve nursing wherever she had an opening. Desirably a team of matron and nurses would be sent, with the hope that the hospital...

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Hospitals in Southern England

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pp. 195-304

Royal Hampshire Hospital, Winchester
Editor: Nightingale had obvious family ties to Winchester, a town not far from the Nightingale home, Embley, in Hampshire. In one of her first great struggles post-Crimea, she worked mightily to get the Winchester authorities to build a new hospital, rather than merely renovate the old. Its high death rate, due to sanitary defects, amounted to murder...

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Scottish Hospitals

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pp. 304-378

Edinburgh Royal Infirmary
Editor: The Edinburgh Royal Infirmary was to become the major branch plant of the Nightingale Fund and School, going on to train nursing leaders who took Nightingale School training to other parts of Scotland and indeed many parts of the world. The start was rocky, for Edinburgh and its infirmary were rough places in the mid-nineteenth century...

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Other Scottish Hospitals

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pp. 378-383

Glasgow Royal Infirmary
Editor: There were early exchanges about nursing in Glasgow with businessman David Smith, to whom Nightingale sent her Notes on Nursing for the Labouring Classes in 1861. Smith replied with ideas as to how to use her book in Glasgow, and that he hoped to apply the book to other institutions where he was a director, naming the City Poor...

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Irish Hospitals

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pp. 384-404

Editor: Roman Catholic women’s religious orders founded nursing in Ireland, as they did in many countries. However, ‘‘the modern secular professional nurse [in Ireland] emerged as a result of an Anglican social refor m movement in the late nineteenth century,’’ concluded Irish nursing historian Gerard M. Fealy. Greta Jones and Elizbeth Malcolm...

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Australian Hospitals

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pp. 404-443

Sydney, New South Wales Editor: The extension of nursing into Australian hospitals was made early in the life of the St Thomas’ School, at a time when suitable trained nurses were all too scarce. It was the first attempt also to implant a trained matron and nurses’ team at a great distance, and Nightingale and Henry Bonham Carter would rue their haste in selecting...

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European Hospitals

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pp. 443-498

Editor: Nightingale’s Notes on Nursing were translated into Swedish in 1861 by Emily Nonnen, who sent Nightingale a copy of her translation. With it went an inquiry about ‘‘hints’’ for setting up a nurse training school.606 A Manchester correspondent of Nightingale’s, John Edward Morgan...

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American Hospitals

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pp. 498-527

Editor: Nightingale had an enormous influence on the early development of nursing in the United States, thanks greatly to the concerted work of key collaborators. Her involvement with nursing in the American Civil War is related in volume 15. Several American doctors sought out and, to varying extents, followed her advice: notably Walker Gill...

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Canadian Hospitals

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pp. 528-547

Editor: Florence Lees, visiting Canada late in 1873, reported to Nightingale that Canadian hospitals were deplorable but that Canadian girls had the potential to become good nurses if proper training were available.735 Lees also went to Ottawa at the invitation of Lady Dufferin, wife of the governor general, but who arranged for the visit and any outcome from...

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Other Countries

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pp. 547-574

Editor: As above, the material is chronologically arranged by first contact, except for those very brief mentions of countries that are grouped at the end...

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Retrospective on Extending Nursing in Hospitals

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pp. 574-576

Editor: On Mary Crossland’s retirement in 1896, William Rathbone wrote an appreciation for her being able to bring ‘‘nursing so rapidly for ward from a discreditable and discredited position to its present honourable and honoured one.’’ He said that all (with one exception)...

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Nursing in Workhouse Infirmaries

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pp. 577-639

Nightingale saw service to the ‘‘sick poor’’ as her main mission, and who better than the sick of the workhouses? For her the sick pauper was no longer a pauper, that is, someone deserving of harsh treatment, but a ‘‘fellow creature in suffering,’’ who deserved the best care.1 Her vision (shared with Dr Sutherland)...

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Jane Senior, First Woman Poor Law inspector

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pp. 639-694

Editor: Jane Senior (1828-77), wife of the noted political economist Nassau Senior, was appointed the first woman Poor Law assistant inspector in 1873, by the progressive Liberal president of the Local Government Board, James Stansfeld. She was made inspector the following year. Her responsibilties included schools as well as workhouse infirmaries...

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Workhouse Nursing in Ireland

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pp. 694-706

Editor: Some material on bringing trained nursing into the workhouses of Ireland, particularly on the political and administrative aspects, has already appeared in Public Health Care (6:490-506). Letters here deal more with training, staffing and practice. The lady superintendent at the Belfast Union Infirmary (the workhouse infirmary) was Ella Pirrie...

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District Nursing

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pp. 707-749

‘‘District nursing’’1 in Nightingale’s time refer red to the provision of professional nursing care in the patient’s own home, for people unable to pay for private care: the ‘‘sick poor.’’ This sort of home care was an essential component of her vision of a comprehensive system of health care: ‘‘Till we nurse...

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‘‘Training Nurses for the Sick Poor,’’ 1876

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pp. 750-783

Sir: The beginning has been made, the first crusade has been fought and won, to bring a truly ‘‘national’’ under taking—real nursing, trained nursing—to the bedsides of cases wanting real nursing among the London sick poor, in the only way in which real nurses can be so...

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The Queen’s Jubilee Nursing Institute

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pp. 784-815

Editor: To celebrate Queen Victoria’s71 ‘‘golden jubilee,’’ marking her fifty years on the throne, a fund was raised among the public. Florence Lees, the crown princess of Prussia and William Rathbone are credited with convincing the queen to devote a significant portion of this money to district nursing. The creation of the Jubilee Institute of Nursing in...

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Introduction to Rathbone’s History of District Nursing

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pp. 815-842

Editor: In 1890 Nightingale wrote an Introduction to Rathbone’s History of District Nursing, an under taking which required much correspondence with Rathbone. As usual he was keen to get the material out fast, while she wanted him to rethink certain sections and add material. She enlisted Henry Bonham Carter’s help on the latter, he...

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Correspondence with Amy Hughes

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pp. 842-853

Editor: Amy Hughes emerged in the 1890s as a major leader in the cause of district work (see the biographical sketch on her in Appendix A). Exceptionally, the correspondence between her and Nightingale survives from both sides. Hughes also left notes giving her impressions of visits she made to consult Nightingale. She reported that their first meeting took place in 1885...

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Extending District Nursing in Britain

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pp. 853-870

Editor: Separate sections are provided here with material on the introduction of district nursing to areas outside London, elsewhere in England, then to Scotland, Ireland, Germany and Canada, with a brief miscellaneous section at the end...

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Extending District Nursing Outside Britain

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pp. 871-877

Editor: In addition to the correspondence with the grand duchess of Baden on hospital nursing above, the next two letters here are to do with her requests specifically regarding district nursing...

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Rural Health Visitors, ‘‘Health Missioners’’

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pp. 877-896

Editor: Nightingale’s childhood and young adulthood was spent largely in rural Hampshire and Derbyshire and the Verneys’ Claydon House was in rural Buckinghamshire. This ensured that she was under no illusions as to the delights of rural life but was well aware of the real...

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Last Work on District Nursing

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pp. 896-900

Editor: Nightingale’s interest in district nursing was strong even in her last working days. As late as 1898 she was making inquiries of the practice of district nurses. A letter to William Rathbone asked, ‘‘Do your district nurses teach (or your midwifery nurses) how to feed young children? It is incredible what is given to quite young children by the tenderest...

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Appendix A: Biographical Sketches

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pp. 901-916

Florence Sarah Lees (1840-1922),1 was the daughter of a doctor who deserted his family, so that she was brought up by a half brother, an Oxford don. Her mother settled in St Leonardson- the Sea, where Lees also lived much of the time. Like Nightingale, Lees was raised in considerable privilege and in a culture that exerted...


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pp. 921-930


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pp. 931-946

E-ISBN-13: 9781554581702
E-ISBN-10: 1554581702
Print-ISBN-13: 9780889205208
Print-ISBN-10: 0889205205

Page Count: 950
Publication Year: 2009

Series Title: Collected Works of Florence Nightingale

Research Areas


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Subject Headings

  • Nurses--Training of--Great Britain--History--19th century.
  • Nursing--Great Britain--History--19th century.
  • Nurses--Training of--History--19th century.
  • Nightingale Training School (London, England)--History.
  • Nightingale, Florence,--1820-1910.
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