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“Such a Many-Purpose Job”: Nursing, Identity, and Place with the Grenfell Mission, 1939–1960

“Such a Many-Purpose Job”: Nursing, Identity, and Place with the Grenfell Mission, 1939–1960 “Such a Many-Purpose Job”: Nursing, Identity, and Place with the Grenfell Mission, 1939–1960 Heidi Coombs-Thorne Memorial University of Newfoundland, Canada In July 1947, Nurse Jean Smith wrote in the Grenfell Mission’s quarterly magazine, Among the Deep Sea Fishers: When I left England two years ago I little expected to have such a many-purpose job. The trained staff of one has a variety of duties to perform, among which are those of housekeeper, cook, farmer, butcher, gardener, painter, carpenter, general overseer and handyman, clothing-store-keeper, accountant, nursing and dentistry besides. For nurses posted to the nursing stations of the Grenfell Mission in Newfound- land and Labrador, Smith’s statement was not an exaggeration. Because of the demands of nursing on isolated stations, nurses became adept at “changing hats” and assuming whatever role was necessary for the provision of health care and the smooth running of the station. Their formal hospital-based training only went so far in preparing them for the range of duties they would perform, duties that were required out of necessity because of the physical geography and sparse settlement pattern of the region and the decentralized structure of the mission. The Grenfell Mission was established in 1893 by British physician http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Nursing History Review Springer Publishing

“Such a Many-Purpose Job”: Nursing, Identity, and Place with the Grenfell Mission, 1939–1960

Nursing History Review , Volume 21 (1): 8 – Jan 1, 2013

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Publisher
Springer Publishing
ISSN
1062-8061
eISSN
1938-1913
DOI
10.1891/1062-8061.21.89
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

“Such a Many-Purpose Job”: Nursing, Identity, and Place with the Grenfell Mission, 1939–1960 Heidi Coombs-Thorne Memorial University of Newfoundland, Canada In July 1947, Nurse Jean Smith wrote in the Grenfell Mission’s quarterly magazine, Among the Deep Sea Fishers: When I left England two years ago I little expected to have such a many-purpose job. The trained staff of one has a variety of duties to perform, among which are those of housekeeper, cook, farmer, butcher, gardener, painter, carpenter, general overseer and handyman, clothing-store-keeper, accountant, nursing and dentistry besides. For nurses posted to the nursing stations of the Grenfell Mission in Newfound- land and Labrador, Smith’s statement was not an exaggeration. Because of the demands of nursing on isolated stations, nurses became adept at “changing hats” and assuming whatever role was necessary for the provision of health care and the smooth running of the station. Their formal hospital-based training only went so far in preparing them for the range of duties they would perform, duties that were required out of necessity because of the physical geography and sparse settlement pattern of the region and the decentralized structure of the mission. The Grenfell Mission was established in 1893 by British physician

Journal

Nursing History ReviewSpringer Publishing

Published: Jan 1, 2013

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