Nursing and the Halifax Explosion

Jessie Smiley, VG School of Nursing 1915, VG Nursing Archives
Jessie Smiley, VG School of Nursing 1915, VG Nursing Archives

Jessie Smiley, VG Nursing Class of 1915, nursed at Camp Hill Hospital during the Halifax Explosion. During WWI she was a Nursing Sister and worked in an Ear, Nose, Throat and Eye department in an English hospital. This served her well for treating the victims of the explosion who suffered mostly with facial injuries.

The Halifax Explosion also helped shape nursing practice, said Gloria Stephens, VG Nursing Archives. “Before the explosion, nurses could only do what doctors said they could do. After the explosion, the need was so great, they were doing things they had never done before, like removing glass, and suturing wounds. Nurses got together and said, ‘We can do more.’”

Source: Gloria Stephens, VG Nursing Archives