Mary Seacole, a Nurse and Heroine

Posted in Caribbean/Latin America, Europe, History, Media Archive, United Kingdom, Videos, Women on 2019-05-22 00:46Z by Steven

Mary Seacole, a Nurse and Heroine

The History Guy: History Deserves to Be Remembered

Lance Geiger, Historian
O’Fallon, Illinois

The History Guy celebrates National Nurses week with the forgotten history of Mary Seacole, who was a British nurse during the Crimean War.

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Florence Nightingale supporters in row over black rival’s new statue, claiming she is venerated based on ‘false achievements’

Posted in Articles, Biography, Europe, History, Media Archive, United Kingdom, Women on 2016-06-22 15:39Z by Steven

Florence Nightingale supporters in row over black rival’s new statue, claiming she is venerated based on ‘false achievements’

The Daily Mail

Martin Robinson, UK Chief Reporter

Plans to give Britain’s most famous black nurse a statue have today been blasted by Florence Nightingale fans, who say it is a ‘history hoax’ because all she did was ‘sell wine and sandwiches’ in Crimea.

Mary Seacole is set to have a £500,000 bronze unveiled in her honour at St Thomas’ Hospital in London this month – the first public memorial to celebrate the ‘black pioneer nurse’.

It will be taller than Florence Nightingale’s statue in Pall Mall and Edith Cavell’s off Trafalgar Square.

And it will be unveiled this month at St Thomas Hospital where Nightingale founded her nursing school, and Seacole has no connection to whatsoever, critics say…

…Mary Seacole is regarded as our greatest black Briton, a woman who did more to advance the cause of nursing – and race relations – than almost any other individual.

On the bloody battlefields of the Crimea, she is said to have saved the lives of countless wounded soldiers, and nursed them back to health in a clinic she paid for out of her own pocket.

But some historians have long complained that she has become almost as famous as that other nursing heroine, Florence Nightingale…

…Born in Jamaica in 1805, she was the daughter of a white Scottish officer called Grant, and a Creole woman, from whom Mary learned her ‘nursing skills’. In her early 20s, Seacole married a Jamaican merchant called Edwin Seacole and travelled with him around the Caribbean, Central America and England until his death in 1844.

Seacole then set up a ‘hotel’ in the town of Cruces in Panama, where she is reputed to have treated cholera victims.

With the outbreak of the Crimean War later that year, Seacole was determined to offer her nursing services to the British, and, when she was turned down by the authorities, she paid her way to the peninsula out of her own pocket…

Read the entire article here.

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Mary Seacole – International Woman

Posted in Articles, Biography, Europe, History, Media Archive, United Kingdom, Women on 2015-03-08 20:09Z by Steven

Mary Seacole – International Woman

The Huffington Post, United Kingdom

Elizabeth Anionwu, Emeritus Professor of Nursing
University of West London

Later this year a memorial statue to Mary Seacole will be unveiled in the gardens of St Thomas’ hospital, overlooking the River Thames and the Houses of Parliament. Sir Hugh Taylor, Chairman of Guys & St Thomas’ NHS Foundation Trust, said: “Mary Seacole was a pathfinder for the generations of people from black and minority ethnic backgrounds who have served the NHS over the years and she remains a positive role model for the current generation. The Trust is proud to be hosting the statue, not least because it speaks to the diversity of our local population, our patients and the staff who work here.”

It was 160 years ago that Mary first set foot in the Crimea to feed and nurse British soldiers and she stayed there for the remaining 18 months of the conflict. Sir William Howard Russell, The Times newspaper’s Crimean War correspondent praised her efforts. In 1857 he wrote “I trust that England will not forget one who nursed her sick, who sought out her wounded to aid and succour them, and who performed the last offices for some of her illustrious dead.” He would have been sad to see that Mary was virtually forgotten for a century following her death in London on 14 May 1881. This was despite an obituary appearing in the pages of The Times!…

Read the entire article here.

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Mary Seacole: The Black Woman Who Invented Modern Nursing

Posted in Biography, Books, Europe, History, Media Archive, Monographs, United Kingdom, Women on 2013-06-18 01:42Z by Steven

Mary Seacole: The Black Woman Who Invented Modern Nursing

Basic Books
288 pages
5.5 x 1 x 8.3 inches
Hardcover ISBN: 9780786714148; ISBN-10: 078671414X

Jane Robinson

She was a black woman, and she flouted convention. In an age that put ladies in the parlor and preferred them to be seen and not heard, she was nursing the British wounded, not in hospital wards with Florence Nightingale but on the Crimean battlefields—and off them, she was running a restaurant and hotel. She purveyed homemade pickles in England; she mined for gold in Panama. For unabashed individuality, Mary Jane Grant Seacole knew no peer. Yet Punch, the Times, the Illustrated London News all ardently touted her, and Queen Victoria herself entertained her. Mary Seacole—childless widow of Horatio Nelson’s godson and “good ole Mother Seacole” to the soldiers at Sebastopol—was Britain’s first black heroine, and this robust, engaging biography by social historian Jane Robinson shows why. In a narrative driven by colorful adventure, Robinson charts Seacole’s amazing odyssey from her native Kingston, Jamaica, to her adopted London, via Panama, where she lent her doctoring and nursing skills to catastrophic outbreaks of cholera and yellow fever, and the Crimea, where she founded the famous British Hotel. Seacole makes numerous other eventful stops along the way, and everywhere, even in the face of disappointment, disaster, and loss, her indomitable spirit prevails.

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