A Visit to the Hospital in 1878

Ever wondered what being a patient at a South Australian hospital was like over 140 years ago? Fortunately, we can get a glimpse of this experience from an account that appeared in the Adelaide Observer newspaper on the 28th December 1878. The writer, who gives his name as only ‘A Casual Patient’, describes himself as […]

Vale Dr Harry

Doctor Richard (Harry) Burnell, 1936-2021 Last month, Adelaide lost one of its veteran medical devotees. Dr Harry, as he liked to be called, served the children of South Australia throughout his career spanning several decades. Dr Harry grew up in Adelaide, attending St Peter’s College, and graduating from the Adelaide University Medical School in 1959. […]

The Two Towers of St Margaret’s Hospital

Recently, I had the opportunity to visit St Margaret’s Hospital. A former convalescent (and later rehabilitation) hospital in the seaside suburb of Semaphore. Thanks to my fantastic guide, I was given a tour of the site that gave me a small insight into the history of St Margaret’s. St Margaret’s was built as a convalescent […]

Dox Denture Grinder

The Dox Denture Grinder was invented in 1933 by Hurtle Thomas Jack Edwards. Born in 1897, Edwards was one of six, who were the first graduates of the University of Adelaide Dental school in 1923. He was Honorary Dental Surgeon at Royal Adelaide Hospital from 1924 to 1948 and Lecturer at University of Adelaide from […]

South Australian Boer War Nurses

“Yes, war is a cruel thing indeed” “It is wonderful how the patient never murmur.  Those who have had a leg or arm amputated, or who have even lost their sight, are quite patient.  Poor fellows, they say it is for a good cause.  Such a lot of nice men have died here.” Mary O’Shanahan, […]

Remembrance Day

On Remembrance Day, the CALHN Health Museum in partnership with Spiritual Care Services and the RAH Volunteer Unit, honoured and remembered staff members of our hospitals that have served in the Australian Defence Force. At the Royal Adelaide Hospital there were displays of historical objects and stories, along with handmade poppies for sale. All money […]

Quarantined! A Visit to Torrens Island

CALHN Health Museum staff recently popped “hand sanny” in our bags and visited the Torrens Island Quarantine Station thanks to the SA Maritime Museum. Nursing and medical staff from the former Royal Adelaide Hospital worked at the quarantine station, so it was an interesting research trip, especially in light of the current Covid-19 pandemic. From […]

A Grand Staircase

Worthy of a ‘Scarlett O’Hara’ moment, the Margaret Graham Building staircase is certainly impressive.  The Margaret Graham Building was opened in 1911 and started its life as a Nurses Home, providing accommodation for all the nursing staff of the (Royal) Adelaide Hospital.  Designed by Charles Owen Smyth and built by James Thomas Brown, the Nurses […]

Bath Time at The Queen Elizabeth Hospital

Fancy a bath? This week we take a look at the bathrooms at The Queen Elizabeth Hospital. The main building’s of The Queen Elizabeth Hospital were built in stages from 1954 to 1959. They included all the modern amenities that the 1950s could offer, such as; personal telephones for patients, central heating and a silent […]

History Festival: Head, Shoulders, Knees and Toes

Have you ever wondered why we have ear wax or what disease can do to your bones? To find out, come along to our exhibition across two sites, Hampstead Rehabilitation Centre and The Queen Elizabeth Hospital, where we will explore the systems of the body. At TQEH, learn about the renal system and the history […]