Rare adverts featuring nurses from yesteryear feature on the Queen’s Nursing Institute’s new calendar for 2013.
The illustrations are taken from the “Nursing Notes and Midwives Chronicle” going back to 1900, and “The Queen’s Nurses’ Magazine”, founded in 1904 and published under various names until the 1970s.
Few of the adverts have been reproduced again until now.
The drawings show in detail the uniforms, equipment, accessories and therapies that nurses and midwives used in the early to mid 20th century.
Popular items were the “Celebrated Midwife’s Case”, the “Flora” Apron, the “Grevillite Portable Sterilizer” and the “Dawsonn Improved Invalid Chair”.
Acting QNI director Anne Pearson said: “Vintage advertisements provide a whole new perspective on the history of nursing through the 20th century.
“One only has to look at the floor length dresses worn by Edwardian nurses, and contrast them with the knee length skirts of the 1960s, to see how radical this change was.”
She added: “Nurses will also find the prices interesting, though they are given in ‘old money’.
“In 1930 – during the Great Depression – a nurse’s coat cost 39 shillings and six pence – about £1.99 in today’s money – but as wages then were also much lower, this would have been an expensive item.”
Ms Pearson said she hoped the calendar would prove to be a “thought-provoking and entertaining talking point” for nurses.
The calendar is available for £5.99 from the QNI’s online shop, with all proceeds from sales going to help support the QNI’s charitable work.