Photograph of threee nurses - Fricker, Swayne and Burke

Production date
Black and white photograph mounted on card of three nurses. From left to right: sisters Matilda Fricker, Ethel Swayne and Lily Burke. See research and attribution for biography of Matilda Fricker (featured nurse, For us They Fell) and Ethel Swayne, featured nurse. 37 year old Matilda was one of the New Zealand Army Nursing Service’s first recruits. Along with 49 others, the Waikato Hospital nursing graduate left Wellington on 8th April 1915 on board the Rotorua. As happened with the troops, a patriotic crowd gathered to see them off. The Dominion newspaper reported: “One could not look over the faces of these young women and have any suspicion that a single one of those grey cloaks covered a falter[ing] soul.”

Ethel Swayne was the sister of featured solider Cocky Swayne (farmer, Cambridge).

Lilly Burke trained with Fricker at Waikato Hospital and left on the same transport ship.
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Object Detail

photographic paper
263 x 183 mm
Production place
Department Collection Type
Object type
Credit line
Gift of Waikato Area Health Board,
Collection of Waikato Museum Te Whare Taonga o Waikato
Accession number