Sunday, October 6, 2013

Nurse (Matron) Emma Hattaway 1864-1920

                       Sir George Grey Special Collections, Auckland Libraries AWNS-19240619-48-6

Nurse (Matron) Emma Hattaway was born in 1864 to Captain Robert Hattaway and his wife Maria (nee O'Leary). The Historic BDM have her given name as Julia Hattaway. However, it appears she was known as Emma through out her lifetime. Emma was the fourth daughter in a family of 13 children.

 Her father Robert was born at Headcorn, Kent, England in 1826. In 1842 he joined the 59th Regiment of Foot at Chatham, and later was sent to Sydney in 1844, before arriving at the Bay of Islands in 1845. Serving under Major Cyprian Bridge in the campaign to subdue Hone Heke, Hattaway took part in the storming of the pa at Oheawai the resulting in 101 soldiers being killed or wounded. Hattaway was promoted to the rank of Colour-Sergeant after the taking of the Ruapekapeka Pa in 1846. In 1850, Robert retired and became a store keeper at Howick under the Military Settlement Regulations. 1860 saw him again see active duty during the Taranaki Land Wars and Wairoa South. He was promoted to the rank of Lieutenant serving in the Auckland Regiment, Third Batallion of the New Zealand Militia. He was promoted to the rank of Captain in 1863, and retired again in 1866 to reside in Pakuranga where he took up farming. He had met his wife Maria in Auckland sometime in 1845, and they were possibly married in the same year. Maria had accompanied Robert up to the Bay of Islands during the Maori Wars. They had a total of six sons and eight daughters. Robert died at his residence in Arawa St, Khyber Pass in Auckland on 21 December 1904 aged 78. Maria died at the family residence, Cascade Farm where she had lived for 42 years, aged 74 on 20 July 1904. Robert and Maria were buried in the Anglican Cemetery at Howick.

"The Gallagher Girls" (1918) Image Herman John Schmidt
Sir George Grey Special Collections, Auckland Libraries, 31-56608

Emma spent her early years from little I have been able to find in Pakuranga. In 1891 she entered training as a nurse working under the Auckland Hospital Board. She passed her first year exam in 1892. Emma successfully graduated as a fully qualified nurse around 1896, and then took charge of the men's typhoid ward. She held the position for three years, when in 1899 she resigned as head of the ward and left the service of Auckland Hospital. Her employers thought highly enough of her dedicated service to the care of her paitients that she was presented with a nurses watch and locked engraved with the inscription --

"Auckland Hospital.—To Nurse Emma Hattaway from past and present hon. and resident physicians and some medical friends. December 31, 1899.”

 She is mentioned again in 1902, as being one of the nurses who cared for returned solders from Boer War at the quarantine hospital on Motuihi Island in the Hauraki Gulf, Auckland. In 1907, Emma sat her midwifery examination and passed it without much effort. By February 1908, she had set herself up in the Waikato township of Te Kuiti as "Nurse Hattaway" where she had obtained a house in Taupiri Street and announced her intention to take in patients after March 12, 1908

Nurse Hattaway, CERTIFICATED AND REGISTERED NURSE, will start a Maternity Home and Hospital in Te Kuiti, near to Railway station, during the course of this month.
Page 2 Advertisements Column 2
King Country Chronicle, Volume II, Issue 71, 28 February 1908, Page 2

Nurse Hattaway started the first hospital in Te Kuiti, by August 1908, she had given her private hospital the name "Whangaruru"

Nurse Hattaway, Certificated & Registered Maternity, Medical & Surgical Nurse, IS prepared to receive patients at the Nursing Home: "Whangaruru," Taupiri-street, Te Kuiti. No Mental or Infectious Cases admitted
Page 2 Advertisements Column 2
King Country Chronicle, Volume II, Issue 95, 14 August 1908, Page 2

In 1909, a new hospital building "Wharenana" was built on a rise over looking Te Kuiti township.

Wharenana Nursing Home.
In every civilised community the care of the sick and wounded is of the first consideration. Commonly the matter of making provision for those who fall victims to disease or accident is undertaken by the public and in the various districts throughout the Dominion, the public hospital is a recognised institution. 
Of recent years, however, the growth of private hospitals and nursing homes in various centres has been very marked though their sphere of action is usually confined to larger towns. At Te Kuiti, the centre for a large district in which progress has been rapid, hospital requirements in a public sense have not been undertaken. Thanks to the enterprise of Nurse Hattaway however, a private nursing home has been in existence for the last two years. Until recently the hospital was carried on in the centre of the town in a building which was suitable for only a limited number of cases. Nurse Hattaway has now had a new building erected specially as nursing home at Te Kuiti. The institution is on the Eastern side of the river, on a knoll which commands a beautiful view of the town. 
Rooms for five patients are provided in the home including a special ward for accident cases. The building contains altogether eleven rooms, and is splendidly fixed up, the sumptuously finished dining room particularly giving an atmosphere of solid comfort to the place. On all sides the aspect is a pleasant one while light, ventilation and warmth most important of medicines have been provided for with every attention to detail. 
The value of such an institution to Te Kuiti can hardly be estimated and the large number of patients already treated by Nurse Hattaway will be greatly increased in the new home. Patients admitted, to the home may be attended to by their own doctor, and in order to have regularity, thoroughly maintained the visiting hours have been fixed between 3 p.m. and 5 p.m. each day. Altogether the nursing home fills a very important niche in the scheme of things locally, and Nurse Hattaway is to be heartily congratulated on her enterprise.
King Country Chronicle, Volume IV, Issue 205, 4 November 1909, Page 2

 Hattaway sold the Whangaruru Hospital premises to Dr F.W. Fullterton during late September

Advertisement King Country Chronicle 30 September 1909

Advertising King Country Chronicle, 6 October 1909

Nurse Hattaway continued her practice at "Wharenana"until 1915. During her time there she treated numerous injuries, illnesses and witnessed the birth of children. In 1913 she was part of the committee that formed the Te Kuiti Branch of the St John Ambulance. Ill health in 1915, however forced Hattaway to close down her much loved hospital for good on June 30. The property was sold for use as a private residence.

The Wharenana Nursing Home at Te Kuiti, which was established by Nurse Hattaway some years ago, has been closed and no farther patients will be taken. The institution has been widely patronised by both town and country residents, and the closing of the home severs another link between the earlier days of settlement and the present.
In to-day's issue there appears particulars of the sale by auction of Nurse Hattaway's furniture and effects. The nurse being unfortunately compelled through continued ill-health to take a long rest, and having disposed of her property, has instructed Mr Graham to clear every line without reserve. The sale presents a golden opportunity to buyers to secure good, clean, useful goods at their own price.

King Country Chronicle, Volume IX, Issue 783, 30 June 1915, Page 4

After almost a year's rest, Emma took on the temporary role of Matron of the Tauranga Hospital, as a relief for Nurse Hawkins who was called to France to nurse wounded soldiers on the front. Hattaway furnished her final report as Matron of Tauranga Hospital in January of 1916, before taking up relief Matron duties at either Patea or Mercury Bay.

Matron's Report.
Nurse Hattaway, who recently relinquished the position of Matron to the local hospital, submitted her final report to the local committee of the Hospital and Charitable Aid Board at Its meeting on the 3tb inst. The report, dated February 7th, was as follows
"I have the honour to place before you my final report, dating from January 1st, 1917.
Fourteen admissions, eleven discharges, one death, and at present there are eleven patients in the Hospital. Of these seven infectious cases have been admitted, two diphtheria cases have been discharged, one enteric patient died, and four enteric cases are in undergoing treatment.
The District Nurse has removed her quarters from the Hospital, and a staff probationer, Nurse Stuart, has been obtained and occupies the room lately used by the District Nurse. Owing to pressure of work, Nurse McClymont, a qualified nurse, from Auckland, was obtained and did night duty for a month.
The cook and laundress contracted an illness and owing to the dismissal of the housemaid, for the past month the Nursing Staff have had to undertake the domestic duties in addition to their own worn, making the month a strenuous one. A washer woman has been obtained for the past four weeks. The cow has gone off in her milk and as the supply is not sufficient Mr Spence has instructed that arrangements be made with a dairy to supplement it.
Mr Pemberton has glassed in the end of the women's verandah, but has omitted to paint the frame work. The old men are well, and are making good use of the scythe and saw supplied to them.
As Miss Mason has returned from the Front and again taken over the charge of the Tauranga Hospital my charge here has now terminated. I wish to thank Messrs Robbins and Spence for the help and kindness that I have received from them during my term of Matronship here. To Mr H. H. McCarthy, local secretary, I am much indebted for his ever ready assistance."
Bay Of Plenty Times, Volume XLV, Issue 68211, 19 February 1917, Page 4

During 1918, Emma took care of Influenza victims at Te Kuiti and was thanked by the Te Kuiti Borough Council for her efforts as was her sister-in-law Mereana Hattaway also a qualified nurse in their care of patients.

In February of 1919, Emma headed north to the Kaipara to take up the position of Matron at the Otamatea Cavell Memorial Hospital in Paparoa. After less than 18 months on the job Emma Hattaway fell seriously ill and died from heart failure on 15 July 1915.

In 1924, the community at Paparoa unveiled a memorial tablet made of marble commemorating the much beloved matron of their hospital. It was placed on display in the public entrance of the hospital along with a large portrait. The hospital has long since closed. What happened to the memorial to a dedicated nurse is yet to be discovered. 

Further Reading


Amy said...

oh this is a cool post! I've wondered about the old nursing home at Paparoa, the ex and I looked at that place when it was for sale a few years back, would've loved to have bought it.

MG said...

Liz has done a great job tracing Emma Hattaway - my great Aunt. I have been researching Emma for a number of years. She was the daughter of my great, great grandfather Robert Hattaway. She was a woman of modern times - early to enrol to vote, a registered nurse and a registered midwife, and she set up a private hospital where no hospital existed.
I would now like to correct some errors that appear in the blog. I won't do them all but some need to be mentioned here.

Emma was born in 1863 not 1864. Her name was not Julia - Julia was actually her sister born in 1864.
Emma completed a three-year nursing certificate in 1894 and was early to register in May 1902 under the new Nurses' Registration Act. Emma’s best friend Mereana Tangata, who married Emma’s youngest brother, completed her nursing course in 1896 and registered in June 1902.

Emma's father, Robert Hattaway was not promoted to the rank of Colour-Sergeant after the taking of the Ruapekapeka Pa in 1846. He was promoted to Corporal July 1845. He was promoted to Sergeant in 1850 and then Colour Sergeant after that. Unfortunately, the interpretation that he was promoted to Colour Sergeant from a Private at age 19 has been perpetuated, but the facts are in the military records.
Robert was not discharged from the 58th Regiment in 1850 - it was 1856.
There is some question as to whether Robert was actually in Taranaki in the 1860s as he was in the Auckland militia. He was promoted to Captain in 1865 not 1863.
Robert and Maria O'Leary married in 1851 in Auckland, just before Maria’s 16th birthday. Maria did not arrive in New Zealand until the end of 1847.