Sarah Glassford


This article analyses the federal government pension files of forty Canadian women who nursed for the Canadian Army Medical Corps (CAMC), exploring aspects of their health, work and family lives in the decades immediately following the First World War. The sample exclusively features nurses with ties to the region of Southwestern Ontario but in demographic terms is also largely representative of the entire body of CAMC nurses. Collectively, the files depict nurse veterans who mobilized their medical knowledge and professional networks when faced with challenging health situations, pursued diverse postwar employment strategies, and in some cases played crucial roles in the financial support of their kin. Clearly, the First World War did not discriminate by gender when it came to casting a long shadow over the health, careers and family relationships of those who served.