Medical staff at Noupoort during the Anglo-Boer War

Many countries and Red Cross type organisations sent equipment and personnel to South Africa during the Anglo-Boer War. Among these was a group of Scots from Edinburgh who collected £12 000 to establish and staff a hospital, writes professor J C (Kay) de Villiers in Healers, Helpers and Hospitals.  Personnel embarked on the SS Briton which arrived at in Cape Town on April 10, 1900.   There was no transport to take them northwards, so they did not disembark, but sailed on to Port Elizabeth. There they found no suitable accommodation for the nurses, so on May 17, 1900, these women were sent on to Noupoort in the Karoo where they joined the No 26 General Hospital. Tragedy struck three weeks after they arrived. Sister Mary Boyd, the sister of physician Dr Francis D Boyd, was struck down by dysentery. Nothing could be done to help her and she died four months later.  One of the orderlies, William Dick, also died of typhoid.


© Rose’s Roundup, July 2011 (No 210)

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