Australia. Army. Australian Army Nursing Service. (1902-1948)

Also known as
AANS.
AANS. (1902-1948)
Australia. Army. Australian Army Nursing Service.
Australian Army Nursing Service.
Australian Army Nursing Service. (1902-1948)
Australian Army Nursing Service (AANS). (1902-1948)
Function
Armed services organisation; Medical Care Provider
Libraries Australia
http://nla.gov.au/anbd.aut-an36002991
NLA Persistent Identifier
https://nla.gov.au/nla.party-597790

Biographies

The Australian Army Nursing Service, which was actually a reserve, was established on 1 July 1902. The Service was staffed by volunteer civilian nurses who would be available for duty during times of national emergency. Members of the Service served in both the World Wars, staffing medical facilities in Australia and overseas. In 1949 the Service became part of the Australian Regular Army and is now known as the Royal Australian Army Nursing Corps (RAANC).

Prior to Australia's Federation in 1901, each colony controlled its own defence force, of which the nursing services formed a part. In July 1902 the nursing services of each colony joined together to form the Australian Army Nursing Service. The Service which was part of the Australian Army Medical Corps was made up of volunteer trained nurses who were willing to serve in times of a national emergency.

At the outbreak of World War I staff were recruited from both the nursing service and the civilian workforce. They served at field and base hospitals in Australia as well as in Egypt, England, France, Belgium, Greece, Salonika, Palestine, Mesopotamia and India. After the war the Australian Army Nursing Service returned to a reserve status.

The Australian Army Nursing Service was one of only two women's services (the other being Voluntary Aid Detachments) that were active at the outbreak of war in 1939. Initially the enlisted nurses were the only females to serve outside Australia. Members served in England, Egypt, Palestine, Libya, Greece, Syria, Ceylon, Malaya, Singapore, Papua New Guinea, Solomon Island as well as throughout Australia. They served on hospital ships, troop transports, base and camp hospitals and some spent time in Prisoner of War camps.

After the war members served as part of the British Commonwealth Occupation Force in Japan. In July 1947 members of the Australian Army Nursing Service were transferred to the Interim Army, and in November 1948 the Service was designated a 'Royal' one. In July 1949 the Royal Australian Army Nursing Service became part of the Australian Regular Army. In February 1951 the Service became a Corps and is known as the Royal Australian Army Nursing Corps (RAANC). The Pledge of Service was introduced during World War Two.

I pledge myself loyally to serve my King and Country and to maintain the honour and efficiency of the Australian Army Nursing Service. I will do all in my power to alleviate the suffering of the sick and wounded, sparing no effort to bring them comfort of body and peace of mind. I will work in unity and comradeship with my fellow nurses. I will be ready to give assistance to those in need of my help, and will abstain from any action which may bring sorrow and suffering to others. At all times I will endeavour to uphold the highest traditions of Womanhood and of the Profession of which I am Part.'

The following information will assist you to search for Australian women who served in WW1, not women from any other country, and not WW2 servicewomen. If you are looking for a nurse in the Australian Army Nursing Service, go online to the National Archives and find the person's army file there. If you need help after doing this, then contact this page via the comments - but only after you have gone to the National Archives of Australia for advice. www.naa.gov.au

If looking for women who served in WW2, go here to find out if they did, in fact serve:

http://www.ww2roll.gov.au/

Then go to this site to find their personnel record

http://www.naa.gov.au/collection/explore/defence/service-records/index.aspx

There is an article written by Dr Kirsty Harris published in this year that provides some search tips. 'Researching Australian World War 1 Nurses' can be found Vol 31, Issue 1 of the 2012 edition of the journal.

View the full record at Australian Women's Register

The Australian Army Nursing Service was formed in 1902 and became the Royal Australian Army Nursing Service in 1948.

View the full record at Encyclopedia of Australian Science

Related people and organisations

Australian Women's Register

Encyclopedia of Australian Science

Libraries Australia

Resources for Australia. Army. Australian Army Nursing Service.

Selected resources (55)

Australian Women's Register

  1. Australian Army Nursing Service (AANS)
    Published: National Foundation for Australian Women
    Series: IspartOf The Australian Women's Register
  2. The Royal Australian Army Nursing Corps : an outline of the foundation and development of the Australian Army Nursing Service
    [[s.l.]]
    Published: Australian Army Headquarters
  3. Extracts from regulations and orders; seniority list
    Army Nursing Services, Australian Imperial Force
    [Melbourne]
    Published: Goverment Printer
  4. Seniority list (provisional)
    Australian Army Nursing Service
    [London]
    Published: Wightman & Co.
  5. Standing orders for the Australian Army Nursing Service
    [Melbourne]
    Published: Horticultural Press
  6. Seniority nursing services
    Australian Imperial Force
    [Melbourne]
    Published: Albert J. Mullett, Government Printer
  7. Army nursing services: Australian Imperial Force and Australian Military Forces.
    Australian Imperial Force (1914-1921)
    [Melbourne]
    Published: Albert J. Mullett, Goverment Printer
  8. The Australian Army Nursing Service: a short history with World War One nominal roll and award citations
    Smith, Neil C
    [Gardenvale, Vic.]
    Published: Mostly Unsung Military History Research and Publications
  9. Australian Imperial Force: order for nursing service
    Australian Imperial Force, 2nd (1939-1946)
    [Melbourne]
    Published: Government Printer
  10. A brief record of the Australian Army Nursing Service, 1939-1945
    [[Melbourne]]
    Published: [V.F.X. 47777]
  11. Captives: Australian army nurses in Japanese prison camps
    Kenny, Catherine, 1962-
    [St. Lucia, Qld]
    Published: University of Queensland Press
  12. Desert, bamboo and barbed wire: the 1939-45 story of a special detachment of Australian Army nursing sisters, fondly known as the "Angels in Grey" and their fate in war and captivity
    Murphy, Frances
    [Hornsby, N.S.W.]
    Published: Ollif
  13. The grey battalion
    Tilton, May
    [Sydney]
    Published: Angus & Robertson, (Sydney :Halstead Printing)
  14. Lest we forget: Australian Army Nursing Service
    Wellesley-Smith, Annette
    [Melbourne, VIC]
    Published: Australian Army Nursing Service
  15. Just wanted to be there : Australian Service Nurses 1899-1999
    Reid, Richard
    [Canberra]
    Published: Commonwealth Department of Veterans' Affairs
  16. With the AANS: 1939-1945
    Eadie, Edith D. K.; Australia Remembers 1945-1995 S.A. Committee
    [[Adelaide?]]
    Published: Australia Remembers Committee
  17. White Coolies
    Jeffrey, Betty
    [Sydney]
    Published: Angus and Robertson
  18. Nightingales in the mud : the digger sisters of the Great War 1914 - 1918
    Barker, Marianne
    [North Sydney]
    Published: Allen & Unwin
  19. Australian women at war
    Adam-Smith, Patsy
    [Melbourne]
    Published: Nelson
  20. Guns and brooches : Australian Army Nursing from the Boer War to the Gulf War
    Bassett, Jan
    [Melbourne]
    Published: Oxford University Press
  21. Nurses : "The roses of no man's land"
    Australian War Memorial
    Series: IspartOf 1918 Australians in FranceAustralian War Memorial
  22. Unsung heroes : Australia's military medical personnel
    Australian War Memorial
    Series: IspartOf 1918 Australians in FranceAustralian War Memorial
  23. The reflections of an old grey mare: a salute to those who served
    Underwood, Polly
    [[Kenmore, Qld.]]
    Published: P. Underwood
  24. Colonel Best and her soldiers: The Story of the 33 years of the Women's Royal Australian Army Corps
    Ollif, Lorna
    [Hornsby, NSW]
    Published: Ollif Publishing Company
  25. Thursday Island Nurse
    Burchill, Elizabeth
    [Adelaide, SA]
    Published: Rigby
  26. The Australian Army: A History of its Organisation 1901-2001
    Palazzo, Albert
    [2001]
    Published: Oxford University Press
  27. Jessie Tomlins: an Australian nurse, World War One
    Rae, Ruth
    [2001]
    Published: University of Sydney
  28. The Khiva nursery
    [1917]
    Published: [At sea]: "S.S. Khiva"
  29. Australian nurses since Nightingale 1860-1990
    Burchill, Elizabeth
    [Richmond (Vic.)]
    Published: Spectrum Publications Pty Ltd
  30. A Woman's war : the exceptional life of Wilma Oram Young, AM
    Angell, Barbara
    [Sydney]
    Published: New Holland Publishers (Australia) Pty Ltd
  31. Australian Servicewomen's Memorial
    Southwell-Keely, Michael
    [1999]
    Series: IspartOf War Memorials in AustraliaMichael Southwell-Keely
  32. Group portrait of Australian Army Nursing Service (AANS) nurses, who were former prisoners of war (POWs), ob board the hospital ship Manunda on its arrival in Australia
    [18 October 1945]
    Series: Australian War Memorial, Research Centre
    Group portrait of Australian Army Nursing Service (AANS) nurses, who were former prisoners of war (POWs), on board the hospital ship Manunda on its arrival in Australia. Most of the group were staff members of the 2/10th and 2/13th Australian General Hospital (2/10AGH and 2/13AGH) and the 2/4th Casualty Clearing Station (2/4CCS). Known to be in the photograph are: Christien 'Chris' Oxley, Jean 'Jennie' Greer, Beryl 'Woodie' Woodbridge, Florence 'Trot' Trotter, Eileen 'Shortie' Short, Jessie Blanch, Valerie Smith, Violet McElnea, Betty 'Jeff' Jeffrey, Nesta James, Pat Blake, Janet P 'Pat' Gunther, Jess Doyle, Cecilia E M 'Del' Delforce, Iole Harper, Sylvia Muir, Joyce 'Tweedie' Tweddell, V Haig, Wilma Oram, Jean Ashton, Jessie Simons, Ada C 'Mickey' Syer and Veronica R Clancy. The woman in the centre wearing the dress uniform and hat is Colonel Annie M Sage, Matron-in-Chief of the AANS. The woman in the foreground, standing behind the two seated nurses on the right, is Captain E Mavis Hannah (later Allgrove) and the tall woman third from the right holding flowers is Sister Vivian Bullwinkel (later Statham). A number of the nurses are holding bouquets of flowers that have been sent by their families. Many of these nurses became prisoners of war (POWs) when they were captured by the Japanese after the fall of Singapore in February 1942. Bullwinkel was the sole survivor of the massacre of 21 nurses on Radji Beach, Banka Island, on 16 February 1942.
    P01701.003
  33. Holmes, Katie Ms - Thesis "Between the lines: the letters and diaries of First World War Australian Nurses".
    [1 folder : 1912 - 1984]
    Series: Australian War Memorial, Research Centre
    Examines the letters and diaries of 16 Australian nurses taken from the Private Records collection of the Australian War Memorial. Discusses the role of women in the war as they saw it, what the war meant to these women, the way they saw their role and the way they coped.
    MSS1025
  34. A group of Australian Army Nursing Service nurses at the 52nd British General Hospital at Kalamaria
    [c. 1918]
    Series: Australian War Memorial, Research Centre
    Salonica, Greece. c. 1918. A group of Australian Army Nursing Service nurses at the 52nd British General Hospital at Kalamaria ready for night duty wearing headdress provided for protection against mosquitoes. (Donor Mrs McHardie White)
    H15761
  35. Balcony of troopers' ward, 14th Australian General Hospital, Abbassia
    [1919]
    Series: Australian War Memorial, Research Centre
    Framed: 41.3 x 54.5 cm; unframed: 32 x 45.6 cm Oil and pencil on wood panel An unidentified Light Horse trooper is featured in a balcony ward of 14 Australian General Hospital. There is a bed by the window screened with portable screens and a nurse is standing at the foot of the bed (the way her veil is tied suggests that she is a volunteer nurse rather that a fully qualified nursing sister). The nurse is Mrs G. A. Aumuller. The Light Horse trooper is dressed in the standard royal-blue dress with a white shirt and a red neck tie issued to convalescents. He is standing coyly, holding his hat in his hand. This work was painted between mid-April and 25 May 1919 at Abbassia in Egypt, during the six weeks that Lambert was in hospital suffering from dysentery.
    ART02815
  36. Hospital tent of 3rd Australian General Hospital
    [1915]
    Series: Australian War Memorial, Research Centre
    Lemnos Island, Greece, 1915. Interior of a ward in the hospital tent of 3rd Australian General Hospital (3AGH), showing patients, orderlies and a nursing sister of the Australian Army Nursing Service (AANS). (Donor: Colonel J. H. Dick).
    J01386
  37. Colour patch : Australian Army Nursing Service, AIF
    [c. 1918 - 1919]
    Series: Australian War Memorial, Research Centre
    Brown diamond shaped colour patch for Australian Army Nursing Service, AIF, with an orange circle superimposed on the centre. Worn as a distinguishing unit indication at the head of each sleeve from 1918 by all Australian Army Nursing Service personnel, except those allotted to other units with an authorised colour patch. Wool flannel
    RELAWM13307.152
  38. [Recruiting - Arrangements:] Australian Military Forces - Instructions for the Medical Examination of Recruits. A) For Mobilization B) AIF C) For Garrison Battalions D) AANS [Australian Army Nursing Service] 1940
    [1940]
    Series: Australian War Memorial, Research Centre
    Series AWM54; Control Symbol 834/3/1; Item Barcode 490341
  39. [Recommendation file for honours and awards, AIF, 1914-18 War] Australian Army Nursing Service 11.9.1918 to 24.9.1918
    [1918]
    Series: Australian War Memorial, Research Centre
    Series AWM28; Control Symbol 2/393; Item Barcode 865706
  40. [Recommendation file for honours and awards, AIF, 1914-18 War] Australian Army Nursing Service 6.10.1918 [Recommendation file for honours and awards, AIF, 1914-18 War] Australian Army Nursing Service 6.10.1918 (Recommendations for the Royal Red Cross)
    [1918]
    Series: Australian War Memorial, Research Centre
    Recommendations for the Royal Red Cross
    Series AWM28; Control Symbol 2/394; Item Barcode 865708
  41. Army Women's Services
    [1 item : 1939 - 1945]
    Series: Australian War Memorial, Research Centre
    41 loose typed mimeographed pages outlining the history, rates of pay, conditions of service for Australian Army Women's Services, (Australian Army Medical Corps, Australian Army Nursing Service and Australian Army Medical Women's Services).
    MSS0780
  42. Archbishop Daniel Mannix, Catholic Chaplain General of the Australian Army with three unidentified representatives from the Australian Army Nursing Service (AANS), Women's …
    [c. 1945]
    Series: Australian War Memorial, Research Centre
    Melbourne, Vic. c. 1945. Archbishop Daniel Mannix, Catholic Chaplain General of the Australian Army with three unidentified representatives from the Australian Army Nursing Service (AANS), Women's Royal Australian Army Corps and the Women's Royal Australian Naval Service in the garden at the Archbishop's residence Raheen. The visitors were completing activities of a character formation (moral leadership course) for Catholic personnel during a special visit to Raheen. (Donor J. Morgan)
    P03081.001
  43. Operation clean up DPR/TV/566
    [February 1967]
    Series: Australian War Memorial, Research Centre
    1 min 22 sec 16mm/b&w/silent More Regular Army troops flew into Hobart at the weekend to assist in the bushfire emergency, mainly on cleaning-up operations. Sixty-one of them arrived in a chartered Electra from Melbourne and among these were seventeen members of the Women's Royal Australian Army Corps and Royal Australian Army Nursing Corps. Ninety one members of the 3rd Battalion, Royal Australian Regiment, were flown in by RAAF Hercules aircraft from Edinburgh, South Australia. They will take over many of the duties which have been performed by members of the Citizens Military Force, who completed their annual two week's camp on Sunday. Among the burnt-out buildings, petrol bowsers stood with one-thousand gallons of gasoline still intact in underground tanks. The major task for the troops is on cleaning-up operations around destroyed homes and factories, like this sawmill at Bridgewater. A live hand grenade was found among the debris and later destroyed by an Army ammunition expert. Cleaning-up is a huge task even though brick chimneys are the only solid evidence that homes once stood in many of the burnt-out areas.
    F03844
  44. "Blue Horizon" company on stage
    [1945]
    Series: Australian War Memorial
    The whole company on stage after the finale of the revue, "Blue Horizon". The revue was under the direction of the Australian Army Amenities Service (AAAS) and involved NF482322 Lieutenant (Lt) Elva Baikie (AWAS) who was the Amenities Officer for the Army women's services which includes the Australian Army Medical Women's Service (AAMWS), Australian Army Nursing Service (AANS) as well as the AWAS. The revue was produced by Alan Cairnes and Dudley Simpson and it played to large crowds in an open air venue over several nights. Members of the Australian Women's Army Service (AWAS) were among the performers as were members of the Allied Forces. Darwin, NT. (Donor E. Batt)
    P02698.003
  45. Choir in St George's Chapel Adelaide River, NT.
    [October 1944]
    Series: Australian War Memorial
    The choir in St George's Chapel, front row only, left to right: Sylvia McDonald, Australian Women's Army Service (AWAS); unknown AWAS member; Jo Fox, Young Women's Christian Association (YWCA) representative; unknown AWAS member; Patricia Bennett (AWAS); NF482322 Lieutenant Elva Baikie, (AWAS) and Amenities Officer for the Army women's services (which includes the Australian Army Medical Women's Service (AAMWS), Australian Army Nursing Service (AANS) as well as the AWAS); and Barbara Spiller (AWAS). The choirmaster, Lew Dawe, a Young Men's Christian Association (YMCA) representative is standing on the far left. He organised a choir of forty from all services to sing carols around the Darwin area at Christmas 1944, including hospitals and barracks. The choir also visited the navy ships anchored in the harbour. The St George's Chapel, built by voluntary labour using bamboo for the walls, was used for church parades by all denominations. (Donor E. Batt)
    P02698.002
  46. Sister Ellen Savage
    [May 1943]
    Series: Australian War Memorial
    Sister Ellen Savage, Australian Army Nursing Service (AANS), being interviewed at Greenslopes Army Hospital about 7 or 10 days after her rescue from the hospital ship Centaur.
    044428

Encyclopedia of Australian Science

  1. Australian Army Nursing Service
    Published: The University of Melbourne eScholarship Research Centre
    Series: Encyclopedia of Australian Science
  2. Not for glory: a century of service by medical women to the Australian Army and its Allies.
    Neuhaus, Susan J and Mascall-Dare, Sharon
    Published: Australian Boolarong Press, Brisbane, Queensland, 2014
  3. Lemnos 1915: a Nursing Odyssey to Gallipoli
    Hedditch, Katrina
    Published: Katrina Hedditch, [Highton, Vic.], 2011
  4. Civilian Legacies of Military Nursing
    Finucane, Julie
    Published: 2004
    Series: Health and History, 6, 2, 97-110
  5. Our War Nurses: the History of the Royal Australian Army Nursing Corps, 1902-1988
    Goodman, Rupert
    Published: Boolarong Publications, Brisbane, 1988
  6. Guns and Brooches: Austalian Army Nursing from the Boer War to the Gulf War
    Bassett, Jan
    Published: Oxford University Press, Melbourne, 1992
  7. Abbott, Joan Stevenson (1899-1975), Nursing Sister and Army Matron
    Fulloon, Gillian
    Published: Melbourne University Press, Melbourne, 1993
    Series: Australian Dictionary of Biography, 13, 3-4
  8. Gray, Ethel (1876-1962), nursing sister and army matron
    Lincoln, Merrilyn
    Published: Melbourne University Press, Melbourne, 1983
    Series: Australian Dictionary of Biography, 9, 84
  9. Bullwinkel: the true story of Vivian Bullwinkel, a young Army nursing sister, who was the sole survivor of a World War Two massacre by the Japanese
    Manners, Norman G.
    Published: Hesperian Press, Carlisle, WA, 1999

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  3. Willingly into the fray : one hundred years of Australian Army nursing / editor and compiler, Catherine McCullagh
    McCullagh, Catherine
    [ Book : 2010-2017 ]
    Possibly online
    At 82 libraries
    Willingly into the fray : one hundred years of Australian Army nursing / editor and compiler, Catherine McCullagh
    This resource is very relevant to your query (score: 1,217.343)

    This resource is very relevant to your query (score: 1,217.343)

  4. Our war nurses : the history of the Royal Australian Army Nursing Corps 1902-1988 / Rupert Goodman
    Goodman, R. D. (Rupert Douglas), 1915-
    [ Book : 1988 ]
    At 73 libraries
    Our war nurses : the history of the Royal Australian Army Nursing Corps 1902-1988 / Rupert Goodman
    This resource is very relevant to your query (score: 1,211.177)

    This resource is very relevant to your query (score: 1,211.177)

  1. World War 1 Australian Army Nursing Service
    Jones, Faithe
    [ Archived website, Periodical : 2010-2019 ]
    View online
    At 3 libraries
    This resource is very relevant to your query (score: 806.585)

    This resource is very relevant to your query (score: 806.585)

  2. Royal Australian Army Nursing Corps centenary parade
    Vale, Danna; Liberal Party of Australia
    [ Article : 2003 ]
    View online
    At Parliament Library
    Royal Australian Army Nursing Corps centenary parade
    This resource is very relevant to your query (score: 455.113)

    This resource is very relevant to your query (score: 455.113)

  3. 'For humanity': genesis of the Royal Australian Army Nursing Service
    Hart, Dorothy
    Sabretache
    [ Article : 1982 ]
    This resource is very relevant to your query (score: 441.455)

    This resource is very relevant to your query (score: 441.455)

  4. A Comparative Analysis of the Development of the Australian Army Nursing Service and the New Zealand Army Nursing Service (1899-1918)
    Nursing.aust
    [ Article : 2007 ]
    View online (conditions apply)
    This resource is very relevant to your query (score: 440.528)

    This resource is very relevant to your query (score: 440.528)

  1. The Royal Australian Army Nursing Corps
    Australia. Army. Directorate of Public Relations
    [ Video : 1955 ]
    At Moving Image Coll
    This resource is very relevant to your query (score: 513.451)

    This resource is very relevant to your query (score: 513.451)

  2. Australian army training team comes home
    Australian Broadcasting Corporation. News
    [ Sound : 2004 ]
    View online
    At ABC Radio National
    Australian army training team comes home
    This resource is very relevant to your query (score: 390.403)

    This resource is very relevant to your query (score: 390.403)

  3. Salvation Army Sells Up
    Australian Broadcasting Corporation. News
    [ Sound : 2004 ]
    View online
    At ABC Radio National
    Salvation Army Sells Up
    This resource is very relevant to your query (score: 370.935)

    This resource is very relevant to your query (score: 370.935)

  4. Army Nurses of the Great War / Interviewer: Beth M. Robertson
    Robertson, Beth M., 1957-
    [ Sound : 1980-1981 ]
    At State Library S Aust
    This resource is very relevant to your query (score: 360.29)

    This resource is very relevant to your query (score: 360.29)

  1. Australian Army Nursing Service
    Australian Army Nursing Service
    Created by rmoj999, 11 items.

    Question: How were the nurses experiences at war represented in newspapers during World War One?Throughout this exercise, my mind changed a lot whilst trying to find a topic which interested...

    This resource is very relevant to your query (score: 642.237)

    This resource is very relevant to your query (score: 642.237)

  2. NT WW2 - Australian Army Nursing Service
    NT WW2 - Australian Army Nursing Service
    Created by glovett-ntl, 4 items.

    Unit served in Northern Territory WW2.

    This resource is very relevant to your query (score: 459.311)

    This resource is very relevant to your query (score: 459.311)

  3. AUSTRALIAN MILITARY NURSE'S UNIFORM WW1 - Australian Army Nursing Service - AANS)
    AUSTRALIAN MILITARY NURSE'S UNIFORM WW1 - Australian Army Nursing Service - AANS)
    Created by mccallumalison8, 11 items.

    Commonwealth Regulations regarding the uniform of military nurses - superintendants, matrons, sisters, nurses.

    This resource is very relevant to your query (score: 385.796)

    This resource is very relevant to your query (score: 385.796)