The Redoubtable Millicent, Duchess of Sutherland and her Hospital Under Canvas

04 June 2014 15:30

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Florence Nightingale Museum

The Redoubtable Millicent, Duchess of Sutherland and her Hospital Under Canvas

Society beauty Millicent Sutherland was possessed of a strong social conscience. But her interest in improving conditions for factory workers made her an embarrassment to both her class and her gender, earning her the nickname ‘Meddlesome Millie’. Widowhood in 1913 gave the Duchess increased independence and as soon as war was declared, she departed to France to establish an ambulance unit under the French Red Cross. With a small team of nurses in the northern French countryside, she cared for the wounded soldiers in a series of temporary locations, beautifully depicted by the artist Victor Tardieu in a series of oil paintings now on display at the Florence Nightingale Museum.

Natasha McEnroe is the Director of the Florence Nightingale Museum. Her previous post was Museum Manager of the Grant Museum of Zoology and Comparative Anatomy and Curator of the Galton Collection at University College London. From 1997 – 2007, she was Curator of Dr Johnson’s House in London’s Fleet Street.