Sunday, November 13, 2011
I love this photo. I think it's from the 1890s, from what I can see of the sleeves and the Gibson girl hair. Can you imagine working in starched whites like this, in the days before air conditioning?
The interesting thing about this photograph is the nurses' caps. Nurse caps are unique to the school from which the nurse graduated, so most likely, not all of these young women graduated together. I suspect that the woman in the darker blouse, third from the left in the back, is at a higher level than the others -- charge nurse, head nurse, or whatever the title was back then -- because of the difference in her uniform. Her cap, of course, would be unique to her school, but her blouse and cuffs are different than the others, too.
Keep in mind that these were the days of nurses in servitude. It wasn't that many years ago when nurses had to rise when a doctor came into the room. Physicians also left their shoes on hospital units, for the nurses to shine. To see these girls so relaxed and seemingly friendly is something unusual to see. Enjoy.