Palmerston North Hospital long time senior surgeon Arthur A Martin features in the David Warnock Medical Museum tribute to mark the 100th anniversary of the start of World War 1.
‘Doc’ Martin was Palmerston North Hospital’s most prominent staff member in The Great War and ended up writing a book about his experiences A Surgeon in Khaki, a copy of which the museum has.
Major Martin died of wounds at Flers on the Somme on 17 September 1916.
His memory lives on in the hospital today with a memorial “erected by the public of New Zealand”, which was erected in 1918, and still stands in a corridor of the hospital. Each Anzac day poppies are attached to the plaque commemorating the man, his hospital, and wartime service.
Other staff, including Palmerston North trained nurses Ina Bennett and Mabel Crook were two of the first 50 New Zealand nurses who left in 1915 to serve in the war. They were among 12 Palmerston North Hospital-trained nurses who served in the war – among them Margaret Davies.
Another nurse Mabel Jamieson tragically lost her life when the army transport ship Marquette was sunk in the Aegean Sea.
The tribute display includes articles about AA Martin, a mannequin wearing a nurses’ uniform of the period, an Army dental chair, and a canvas stretcher.
The museum was set up by the late David Warnock, a passionate collector of medical memorabilia in 1980. As well as the museum on hospital grounds, there are numerous display cabinets around the hospital.
It is administered by a charitable trust which was incorporated in 2001, and the museum, which has about 10,000 items of old medical instruments, equipment and books, is run by volunteers.
It is open on the first and third Fridays each month from 2 to 4.30pm or by request for group visits.
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