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Ruby was born and lived at east Newton Farm, St Vigeans. Her father Robert was a farmer. Ruby joined the SWH as an orderly and served at the end of the war between August 1918-January 1919. Orderly’s worked very hard and often long hours. The main duties included getting the patients up for breakfast(4.30) cleaning and feeding the men, carrying of stretchers up and down the many stairs at Royaumont. During times when the hospital was talking the injured men from the front the scene would be terrifying. The orderly’s would be involved in all the nasty jobs, the removal of blood soaked clothes, removing the blood from the floors and operating tables and running after the Doctors and nurses. And all done as volunteers.

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DR. SYBIL LONIE LEWIS, who died at Hull on March 1918 after a short illness, was born in 1874. She studied medicine in Edinburgh and Dublin, having previously been trained in nursing and midwifery, and obtained the TJ.R.C.P., L.R.C.S., and L.R.F.P.S. diplomas in 1905. After serving as assistant resident medical officer at the Larbert Asylum she began a practice in Hull, and held the appointment of school medical officer and the honorary medical officer ship of the Diocesan Maternity Home, the Hull Sheltering Home for Girls, and the West Hull,creche. In the spring of 1915 Dr. Lewis volunteered for work- in Valjevo, Serbia, and went out there in June under the Scottish Women’s Hospitals. She-was in Serbia when the country was overrun by the enemy and the hospital staff taken- prisoners in 1915. Although a Red Cross party, they were detained in Hungary for four months, under the roughest conditions, and were not released and sent home until February, 1916. Dir. Lewis went out again in August, 1916; and worked with the Serbian army in Macedonia and among the civilian refugees till December, 1917, when she was- recalled by urgent need at home.. She received the Serbian, decoration, of the Order of St. Sava. Fourth Class, in recognition: of’ her devoted work among the Serbs. Her illness lasted only three days, but, in the opinion of the surgeon attending her, the conditions causing it were contracted abroad, and her name must be added. to the growing list of medical women who have given their lives for Serbia.

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Born in Dundee, Lucy was raised in the family home of Arthurstone House, Meigle. Her father James Carmichael was a merchant and manufacturer, clearly a family of some means. In May 1916 Lucy volunteered to join the Scottish Women’s Hospitals and was posted to Royaumont Abbey some 30 miles outside Paris. Lucy joined as an orderly, a position that would guarantee her long hours and heavy work, a far cry from her life with the big house and servants.. It was unpleasant work, cleaning up the blood soaked beds and clothes, mopping up of the operation rooms and wards. Lucy took this on purely to play her part in the war effort or maybe it was an act of humanity either way she did it without question and without any salary. Typical of so many women who went about their war in a quite, industrious and diligent manner. Lucy certainly played her part during “the big push” when Royaumont was bursting at the seams with the wounded, the dying and the constant hysteria from trying to save as many lives as possible. Lucy returned home in February 1917.

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At the time of joining the Scottish Women’s Hospitals, Ethel was living in at ” The Woodlands” Hexham on Tyne. This was 1916, Ethel volunteered as Cook and set sail for the already established hospital in Corsica. In December 1915 Dr Blair was instructed to set up a Hospital for Serbian refugees on the island. On Christmas day 1915 the Corsican unit, also known as the Manchester and District unit, began. And as 1915 came to a close hundreds of Serbian refugees poured in on a daily basis. Dr Blair remarked that ” they looked so desolate and forlorn though most put a brave face on it, that we all felt inclined to weep”.
The main hospital was located in Ajaccio in a two storeyed building of Villa Miot. As the work load grew so did the hospital and tents were pitched in the gardens for open air treatments. A fever hospital was situated a few miles from the General hospital in Lazaet, a historic building that stood high, over looking the gulf. By this time nearly 3000 refugees and a few decimated regiments had arrived from Serbia. Also a band of a few hundred Serbian boys arrived for a few months recuperation. Thirty thousand boys set off on the Serbian retreat. Such were the conditions and horrors of that journey, that only 7000 made it to safety. Nearly 300 of these lads, after they were rested on the island, were sent on to schools in UK and France. Out- patients hospitals were opened in Chiavari some 20 miles from Ajaccio and St Antoine. The value of the work is indubitable and many a young life benefited from the units endeavours. 79 babies were born during the hospitals tenure, a reminder that life even in the darkest of times prevails. The hospital closed in April 1919.

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After her fathers death the family moved to Edinburgh. Ishobel attended Edinburgh;s Ladies School and qualified as a Teacher of Cookery. Her life took an unexpected turn when one evening she went along to hear Dr Elsie Inglis talking on the work the SWH were doing in Serbia and they were looking for volunteers. Ishobel grabbed this opportunity, happy to serve her country and experience some adventure.
Ishobel Ross on the 3rd of August joined the SWH as a cook, she boarded the Dunluce Castle ship at Southampton and with her unit(the American unit) set sail for Salonika. The journey to Salonika was a nervous affair. While the women of the unit spent the 10 day journey learning languages and keeping fit, the ship was in constant danger from mines, submarines and Zeppelins overhead. When Ishobel arrived in Salonika she was incredibly excited at the prospect of working at the Hospital. She also felt at home remarking ” the Serbs are singing their weird songs very like Gaelic”. Even to her the Serbs talking sounds so like Gaelic” Ishobel also felt the local landscape was a lot like Skye.
Their main objective was to support the 2nd Serbian Army who were fighting the Bulgarians in the Moglena mountains. The bigger picture was to support a huge force of Serbians , French and British to reclaim Serbia and push back the Germans, Austrians and Bulgarians. From 1916-1917 she would have worked often at times day and night and all under canvas. The conditions were very hard going, Cases of malaria, gas gangrene, amputations all a common sight, at times quiet then hundreds of injured men pouring in. Very hot in the summer and cold in the winter. Ishobel worked at Lake Ostrovo, 80-100 miles north of Salonika. The cooking was done from a wood burning stove and meals would have been very basic, cooking whatever they could get at times. Ishobel enjoyed her roll as cook as it involved plenty of trips to the towns and village to buy provisions, something she very much enjoyed. By July 1917 Ishobel was home. The book, The Little Grey Partridge, gives an excellent account of her time in service.