Memories & Dreams: A Biography of Nurse Mary Kirkpatrick

by Noeline Kyle








Memories and Dreams is a regional and local history tracing the journey of  Belfast-born immigrant Mary Kirkpatrick (nee Magee) from Ultimo, Sydney to Armidale and then to the Macleay Valley. Nurse Mary Kirkpatrick (1862-1943)was the first trained midwife and established the first private maternity hospital in the town of Kempsey. She walked her midwifery beat for more than forty years, literally trudging daily the streets and lanes of Kempsey and its hinterland. It is also a story of women and friendship. More than thirty women practised midwifery between 1900 and 1930 in Kempsey. Nurse Kirkpatrick knew all of these women, she worked with them, was friends and colleagues with most of them, competed with them, shared resources and often her home with them. She worked too with local doctors.  All of their stories are in this book too ( including Matron Mary Gulliford, Nurse Adelaide (Cook) McCarthy, Nurse Martha Norman, Nurse Agnes Rickerby, Nurse Una (Tessier) Jemesen, Sister Phyllis Tyrell, sister Eva Hodgson, Dr Brabazon Casement and Catherine Ramsay).....This is a woman's story, and how women survived independently in country towns. This book is a family story but it is also a story for and about the people and places of the Macleay. The book certainly would not have been written without the help and interest of many people in the town of Kempsey who continue to remember the work and contribution of Nurse Kirk well.

Noeline Kyle  researched and wrote this biography of Nurse Mary Kirkpatrick over a period of twenty years on a part-time basis. She is the great granddaughter of Nurse Mary Kirkpatrick. Her mother Kathleen, her aunts  Lorna and Jean, and uncle Slim Dusty (David Gordon Kirkpatrick) are grandchildren of Mary Kirkpatrick.

Book Specifications for Memories and Dreams:

 Bibliography, Index

ISBN 0 9578700 1 9

Printed on art quality paper

Includes Illustrations, Maps, Photographs, Charts

Paperback, Colour Cover

176mm x 250mm, 130pp

NB: This book also available from the following bookshops and outlets:

Return to Home Page