CollectionGB 0231 University of Aberdeen, Special Collections
Ref NoMS 3290/2/177
TitleLetter from Amelia Nyasa Laws to her relatives
Date4 March 1917
Extent4 sheets
DescriptionLetter from Amelia Nyasa Laws, 7 Via Venti Settembre, Rome, to her relatives, regarding Aunt's illness with fatigue and a chill; she is improving; several sailors have arrived but it is not clear whether or not they are to stay at the Y.M.C.A. so Uncle is not bothering to go; Maggie Simpson, née Cameron, has married a Seaforth Highlander named Scott Reid, in an Episcopal church; her cousin, daughter of Shirra Gibb (Mrs. Cameron's brother), is engaged to Professor Cowan's son; Harry Cowan was wounded at the front and his knee is not healing; Mrs. Cowan has recently had a stroke; Miss Jazdowska is concerned about it [There were Jazdowskis associated with teaching and art in Aberdeen: James Bronislas Jazdowski, son of John, teacher in Aberdeen, graduated from Marischal College in 1856 and according to an annotation of the Search Room student list died in Rome in 1902]; she has been causing trouble again; she has been complaining of the noise the maid makes in the morning as it is waking Mrs. Brock; in fact Ernesta is extremely quiet; she is upset as much effort is made to be quiet in the room above Mrs. Brock, but Amelia has explained about Miss Jazdowska's complaining, and Ernesta thinks that Mrs. Brock and Miss Jazdowska should sleep on the terrace; one of Maria's nieces, Olga, has decided that she will become Maria's adopted daughter, live with her, and look after her in her old age, so that Maria will leave her all her jewellery; she is five but already self-interest is strong; the female orderlies have arrived and Amelia is happy with her three; one nurses, and the other two are made to do what four men refused to do before, though it is too much for them; Amelia has instituted a daily routine for them which is better; the women do not eat before work as when they arrive they are searched for food in case they are taking it to a patient; they are over supervised by their supervisor and forbidden to be near men, even when they cannot help it; military discipline is harsh and unfair; the administration will give no surgical instruments to a medical ward, even though they have two surgical patients there, so there are no sterilised bandages or instruments available; the ward door is now broken; Amelia went to speak to Baroness Sonnino about the various needs of the ward; she is keen to help and is trying to arrange for a bowl of soup to be given to the women every morning; the patients are not helping - the women's dusters are being stolen and the floors deliberately dirtied to get them into trouble; Amelia reprimanded the patients in question and made them clear up the mess they had made; they insist on spitting on the clean floor and on cleaning their bowls individually in cold water; they are constantly trying to make the women's work a failure.
Access StatusOpen
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