CollectionGB 0231 University of Aberdeen, Special Collections
Ref NoMS 3290/2/257
TitleLetter from Amelia Nyasa Laws to her relatives
Date21 August 1918
Extent4 sheets + carbon copy (6 sheets)
DescriptionLetter from Amelia Nyasa Laws, Valence, to her relatives, regarding busy day; waiting for an inspection by a delegate from Paris; two surgical 'interventions'; it is a daily fight with Hospital 201 to secure essentials for the annexe; the doctor lost his temper; Landré was brought in to have a drainage tube inserted in his knee joint, and the doctor began before the anaesthetic had taken effect; Girou's operation was next but he was quieter; the threatened inspection, which is to be of all the Valence hospitals, is holding up the routine; many of the patients had to be unbandaged to be inspected, then bandaged again afterwards; the inspection interrupted Lt. Chabessier's dinner and infuriated him; the inspector cleared out the most serious cases and some ready for convalescence in the petites formations in the country districts, so there will be a good deal of paperwork; Dr. Jacquin ordered the immediate removal of the four worst cases and sent horse-ambulances for them, but Mlle. Combe is used to doctors and calmly said that they would not be ready for a while; the men did not particularly want to go; Vergnoux is being sent to a hospital where the doctor is good but the nurses consider themselves above frequent changing of dressings, leaving it to the careless and ignorant infermiers; Vergnoux has two bad wounds on his leg 'out of which come regularly splinters of bone and clots' which would easily be infected if not carefully looked after; clearing up after the inspection; fifteen new cases on Wednesday night; they have their diagnoses on envelopes attached to their jacket buttons; they mostly come from Troyes and have fractures, dislocations and minor wounds; Dr. Lavoiepierre is a civilian and therefore suffers at the hands of the military doctors, so though he was impatient she is sympathetic; still he should let them know when he is not to come to the hospital as they have been waiting for him all morning; departure of Marcinach, a Pole, and description of his history and her efforts to chat with him in German; she will find it hard to get to church during the summer as she is only free in the afternoons and the service is in the morning; heavy rain and thunderstorm but no disruption to the arrival of a train of wounded; they are very willing to help one another; Renou, one of the patients, goes to the 201 pharmacy for the annexe's supplies, and helped her to find a workbasket for which she was still hunting; Amelia and Mlle. Combe received a gift of champagne and fruit from J.B. Martin, one of the patients; account of his teasing; the nun is forbidden to eat with the staff but takes her coffee with them and is very amusing. [Letter breaks off without signature, but continues for two pages on duplicate] She teases them for their attendance on the officers; the men like her; visit to the Hôpital Général to see former patients; it is the civil hospital though it also has wounded in it; charwomen do the ward work; Gaudal has had a shell splinter removed from his foot and it will now be amputated, as it is 'practically in two parts'; Langlois has also been operated on, and has been vomiting chloroform; Landré is also suffering but the charwoman scrubbed his mouth very unsympathetically; doing what she can for them while she is there; gifts of fruit and champagne for them; grapes and melons are very good locally; Mlle. Combe is ill - she developed rheumatism of the heart during her training course and cannot deal with stress; she has been sent to bed; a nurse is being brought over from the 201 to cover for her; preparations of various baths for various ailments; the nun sent Dr. Mollin away today saying that the wounded were all out and fit.
Access StatusOpen
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