Thursday, 18 September 2014

Staff of the Glenroy Military Hospital

Detail of photo of 'Ashleigh', site of Glenroy Military Hospital. 
Image courtesy Broadmeadows Historical Society.

I was interested to know who worked at the Glenroy Military Hospital. Again, it hasn’t been an easy task and it has been soldiers’ attestation papers and newspaper reports that have given me most of my information.
It seems that most of the nurses, orderlies and doctors who worked there had yet to embark for overseas. It is hard to tell how long they were assigned to the hospital, but it seems that it was for brief periods only, perhaps only a few weeks.


Sister Hilda Adelaide Allen, aged 28, of Elwood, who had worked previously at the Melbourne Hospital, was on the staff of the Glenroy Military Hospital in October 1915, just prior to enlisting. She embarked In November 1915 and served in Egypt, England and France. She returned to Australia in March 1919. She didn’t marry and died at Elsternwick in 1979.
Sister SarahLeatham Duff was 36 when she enlisted on 18 October 1916 and gave her address as the Military Hospital, Glenroy. There is no way of knowing how long she had worked at the hospital. By the mid-1920s, Sister Duff was in charge of the Truby King Baby Health Centre in Coburg.

Some patients and staff on the verandah outside the Isolation Ward at No 5 Australian General Hospital at St Kilda. Although this image was not taken at Glenroy, it gives you an idea of what measures were taken to try to avoid being infected by contagious patients. Image courtesy Australian War Memorial. Image H18693A  Melbourne, Victoria. 


Lance Corporal Herbert Cobb of Brunswick was attached to the Glenroy Hospital and the hospital at Broadmeadows before heading overseas in late 1916. In Europe, he served as a medical orderly in the Australian Medical Corps. Born in London, he enlisted in Melbourne, but married while in England during the war and returned there to live after the war.
Lieutenant Arthur Frank Stanley Dobson was a 26 year old solicitor and accountant of South Yarra when he enlisted. He was appointed to Glenroy Military Hospital from 14 Sep 1916 to 1 Oct 1916 then he went to MacLeod before going overseas in 1917. He ended up in the Flying Corps.


Fifty year old Captain Victor Joseph Emmanuel Zichy- Woinarski was appointed a medical officer at the end of September 1915. He served overseas briefly but was  back in Australia by the end of Jan 1916. His wife Gertrude was a highly regarded community welfare worker who was a prominent member of the Melbourne Ladies’Benevolent Society. His son Casimir served in the war and his daughter Valerie, who had been a theatre nurse at Ballarat Hospital, served as a nursing sister.

There were other staff, of course, and volunteer workers, too. I would be extremely interested to hear from anyone who can tell me more about who worked at the Glenroy Military Hospital during World War One.


  1. great to have tributes to them and further information, it can't have been easy

  2. It's not been easy and I was surprised that I could not find anything in the official records, and believe me, I've searched everywhere I could think of. At least this way there'll be be something on record. Thanks goodness for TROVE, I say!