Staff Nurse Susan Ethel ‘Susie’ GREAVES, 1877-1964

Susie Greaves and nephew Harry Campbell Greaves, c1915-1918, probably in the UK.  Image courtesy Greaves family archive.

Susie Greaves and nephew Harry Campbell Greaves, c1915-1918, probably in the UK.
Image courtesy Greaves family archive.

Connection to the Hunter Valley – like her sister, Ida Greaves, Staff Nurse Susan Greaves was born and raised in Newcastle and trained at Newcastle Hospital.

Training and experience – graduated Newcastle Hospital in 1903.  Susie was working in India in 1915 before travelling to England to enlist.

Service – Australian Voluntary Hospital (AVH) at Wimereux and Queen Alexandra’s Imperial Military Nursing Service Reserve including ambulance train service.

Service location – France (AVH and British Hospitals) and Italy (No 22 Ambulance Train).  With Staff Nurse Susan Greaves on No 22 Ambulance Train.

Medals – There is no medal card in the name of Staff Nurse Susan Greaves in the National Archives (UK) but Susie would have been eligible for the 1914-15 Star, British War Medal and Victory Medal.

More detail and references:

Next-of-kin – mother, Sarah Greaves, Newcastle (died August 1918)

Relative in AIF – Nephews, Sapper Henry Campbell Greaves, 3rd Field Company Engineers & Private George Campbell Greaves, 4th Australian Motor Transport Company

Honour roll – none identified to date.  Ida attended Cooks Hill Superior Public School but is not listed on its honour roll.

Marital status / married surname        Single

Where born / parents – Newcastle / John William and Sarah Ellen Greaves

National Archives of the UK – Shipping lists, Arabia, arrival at the port of London, 24 April 1915; Service record – WO399/3291

Sydney Morning Herald, 9 February 1916, retrieved from Trove 19 May 2010

Newcastle Morning Herald, 9 December 1887 & 29 August 1918

Newcastle Sun, 5 November 1918

Newcastle Hospital Report, December 1903

Neil Smith, The History of the Australian Voluntary Hospital World War One, Mostly Unsung Military History Research and Publications, Brighton VIC, 2006

Ben Champion, Newcastle Hospital Register 1817-1915, The author, 1950

© Christine Bramble 2013

5 thoughts on “Staff Nurse Susan Ethel ‘Susie’ GREAVES, 1877-1964

  1. David Greaves


    Your deduction on the medals for Susan is correct as I have them in my custody. Susan is my Great Grand Aunt. I believe they came into possession of my father, Peter Greaves, when his Grand Aunt Susan died at Toronto in 1964. He knew both Susan and Ida. Ida’s medals are with one of my cousins. I have built a family history and have the same records as you have quoted.

    On Ida’s page you listed other family members who had service, you are correct in identifying their nephew Henry Campbell Greaves as serving on the Western Front. His brother George Campbell Greaves also enlisted, but I believe he arrived too late for active service on the front, but did stay for an extended period in the Burial Units that operated well into 1919.


    David Greaves

    1. Great War Nurses from Newcastle & the Hunter Region Post author

      Thanks, David. Do you happen to have a photograph of either Ida or Susan’s medals? Interesting that one of the family worked in the Burial Unit after the war. You might be interested in “The children who fought Hitler”, by Sue Elliott, about the work of the War Graves Commission and the men and their families who stayed on in Ypres to take care of Allied cemeteries. As adults in WW2 some of the children were recruited into the British secret service to support the French resistance.

  2. Michael Feeney

    Hello I am adding an article to the local history book about a young soldier who was on the ambulance train, is it possible to use the greaves family Image showing the group and the Imperial War Museum image showing the interior of the Train IWM ( Q8749 ). This is a non profit book which highlights the great sacrifice those soldiers made, Our man eventually died in hospital in London.
    Michael Feeney

    1. Great War Nurses from Newcastle & the Hunter Region Post author

      I will speak to the Greaves family about the images provided by them. You need to apply direct to the Imperial War Museum about their image – they are usually okay provided they are acknowledged and it is not for profit.

      1. Great War Nurses from Newcastle & the Hunter Region Post author

        Michael, I have spoken with a member of the Greaves family. As your request is to use the image of Susie with the other nurses and ambulance train for a non-profit publication, they are happy for you to use it. Please acknowledge as follows: Courtesy Greaves Family Archive.

        I would be very grateful if you could let me know the name and battalion of the soldier concerned so I can learn a bit more about him – his whereabouts on the Western Front at a specific time may tell me more about Susie’s story. (I am assuming he was in the AIF)

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