Doherty, Muriel Knox (1896-1988)

Also known as
Doherty, M. K. (1896-1988)
Doherty, Muriel (1896-1988)
Doherty, Muriel Knox, (RRC) (1896-1988)
Field of activity
Nurse Educator; Nursing Administrator; Nurse; Air Force Principal Matron; Nurse educator
NLA Persistent Identifier
https://nla.gov.au/nla.party-632603

Biographies

Muriel Knox Doherty (1896-1988), nurse and air force principal matron, was born on 19 July 1896 at Armadale, Melbourne, eldest of four children of Victorian-born parents Robert Knox Doherty, clerk, and...

View the full record at Australian Dictionary of Biography

Muriel Knox Doherty began nursing in 1921 at Royal Prince Alfred Hospital, New South Wales, and set up the first preliminary training school at the Royal Prince Alfred Hospital, 1933-1937. In her capacity as matron-in-charge she was the first nurse appointed to the rank of squadron leader in the Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF), where she inaugurated the Royal Australian Air Force Nursing Service. After World War II she worked with displaced persons at Bergen Belsen concentration camp, as a member of United Nations Relief and Rehabilitation Administration. One of four founders of the New South Wales College of Nursing in 1949, she was also instrumental in the establishment of the Civilian Nursing Services Bureau, and co-authored the first Australian text book for nurses, , 1944. She was awarded the Royal Red Cross Medal (1st Class) in 1945 for her work in the RAAF Nursing Service.

View the full record at Australian Women's Register

Muriel Doherty began nursing in 1921 at Royal Prince Alfred Hospital, New South Wales, and set up the first preliminary training school at the Royal Prince Alfred Hospital, 1933-1937. In her capacity as Matron in Charge she was the first nurse appointed to the rank of Squadron Leader in the Royal Australian Air Force, where she inaugurated the Royal Australian Air Force Nursing Service. After the Second World War she worked with displaced persons at Bergen Belsen concentration camp, as a member of United Nations Relief and Rehabilitation Administration. One of four founders of the New South Wales College of Nursing in 1949, she was also instrumental in the establishment of the Civilian Nursing Services Bureau, and co-authored the first Australian text book for nurses, , 1944.

Muriel Knox Doherty was born 19 July 1896 in Victoria. She began her nursing career in 1921 at Royal Prince Alfred Hospital, New South Wales. Completing her training in 1925, she received the Royal Prince Alfred Hospital's Sir Alfred Roberts Medal for General Nursing Proficiency. In 1930 she gained a Sister Tutor Diploma, Kings College of Household and Social Sciences, University of London, UK. On her return to Australia she set up the first preliminary training school at the Royal Prince Alfred Hospital, 1933-1937. She served in the Red Cross Voluntary Aid Detachment during the First World War and in the Services from 1935 to 1946. She was the first nurse appointed to the rank of Squadron Leader in her capacity as Matron in Charge in the Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) later rising to the rank of Wing Commander. This work was recognised by the award of the Royal Red Cross Medal (1st Class) presented by King George VI in London in 1945. A member of United Nations Relief and Rehabilitation Administration (UNRRA) she was also involved with displaced persons in the immediate post war period in the capacity of Chief Nurse and Principal Matron at Bergen Belsen concentration camp in Germany. In 1946 Knox Doherty was posted to Poland and assisted with rehabilitation and nursing education.

Her interest in the growth of the nursing profession is evidenced in the strategic and developmental activities in which she took part, particularly in New South Wales. She was a member of the Australasian Trained Nurses Association; one of four founders of the New South Wales College of Nursing in 1949 and a Foundation Fellow, 1949-1988. She was also a member of the Institute of Hospital Matrons (NSW & ACT). She assisted in the inauguration of the National Florence Nightingale Memorial Committee, becoming one of its first two Vice-Presidents and was instrumental in the establishment of the Civilian Nursing Services Bureau. She co-authored the first Australian text book for nurses, , along with Marjorie Bernice Sirl and Olive Isabel Ring (Sydney: Dymocks Book Arcade, 1944). Knox Doherty died 29 September 1988 in New South Wales.

  • Gained St John Ambulance First Aid Home Nursing Certificate
  • School Nurse and untrained teacher at Abbotsleigh School in Wahroonga, New South Wales
  • Red Cross No. 6 Voluntary Aid Detachment (full time)
  • Teacher (relief) Abbotsleigh (and home duties)
  • Commenced nurse training at the Royal Prince Alfred Hospital, Sydney
  • Charge Nurse for six months and then appointed Sister at the Royal Prince Alfred Hospital
  • Private nursing work in London and Europe
  • Tutor sister course at Kings College, University of London
  • Sister Tutor at the Royal Prince Alfred Hospital and established the first Preliminary Training School
  • Volunteer for the Australian Army Nursing Service
  • Sister Tutor at the Prince Henry Hospital, Sydney
  • Called up as Sister Clerk to the Office of the Principal Matron with the Australian Army Nursing Service
  • Transferred to RAAF and was First Squadron Leader / Matron-in-Charge and later Principal Matron and Wing Commander at the No. 3 RAAF Hospital in Richmond, NSW. Established the Royal Australian Air Force Nursing Service in New South Wales
  • Member of the Kelly Committee for the Reorganisation of the Nursing Profession
  • Demobilised and appointed to United Nations Relief and Rehabilitation Administration (UNRRA). Served in Germany (Belsen) and as the Chief Nurse to the Public Health Consultant in Poland
  • Returned to Australia
  • Travelled extensively in Europe
  • Lived in Australia
  • Lived in UK
  • Returned to Australia and lived in Sydney until her death in 1988

View the full record at Encyclopedia of Australian Science

Related people and organisations

Australian Women's Register

  • (Organisation) Voluntary Aid Detachments (VAD) (1914 - )

    <p>Served as a Red Cross Voluntary Aid during the First World War</p>

  • (Organisation) Australian Army Nursing Service (AANS) (1902 - 1948)

    <p>Service no: N60136</p>

  • (Organisation) Royal Australian Air Force Nursing Service (RAAFNS) (1940 - )

    <p>Service no: 501020</p>

Resources for Muriel Knox Doherty

Selected resources (21)

Australian Women's Register

  1. Doherty, Muriel Knox
    Published: National Foundation for Australian Women
    Series: IspartOf The Australian Women's Register
  2. Doherty, Muriel Knox (1896 - 1988), Biographical Entry
    [2002]
    Published: Australian Science and Technology Heritage Centre
    Series: IspartOf Bright Sparcs
  3. Lifework: Heroes of Australian Health
    Murray, James
    [Edgecliff, NSW]
    Published: Focus Publishing for [Medical Benefits Fund of Australia Ltd]
  4. Letters from Belsen 1945 : An Australian Nurse's Experiences with the Survivors of War
    Doherty, Muriel Knox, and Cornell, Judith and Russell, R. Lynette (eds.)
    [St Leonards, NSW]
    Published: Allen & Unwin
  5. Off The Record - The Life and Times of Muriel Knox Doherty 1896-1988: An Autobiography
    Doherty, Muriel Knox and Russell, R. Lynette (ed.)
    [Glebe, NSW]
    Published: New South Wales College of Nursing
  6. DOHERTY, MURIEL KUOX
    Department of Veterans' Affairs
    [2002]
    Series: IspartOf World War 2 Nominal RollDepartment of Veterans' Affairs
  7. DOHERTY, MURIEL KNOX
    Department of Veterans' Affairs
    [2002]
    Series: IspartOf World War 2 Nominal RollDepartment of Veterans' Affairs
  8. Faith, Hope and Charity Australian Women and Imperial Honours: 1901-1989
    Australian Women's Archives Project
    [2003]
    Published: Australian Women's Archives Project
  9. Story of the RAAF nursing service : 1940-1990
    Halstead, Gay.
    [Metung, Vic.]
    Published: Nungurner Press
  10. Where are the Women in Australian science?
    Australian Science and Technology Heritage Centre
    [2003]
    Published: Australian Science and Technology Heritage Centre
  11. The Life and Times of Royal Prince Alfred Hospital, Sydney, Australia
    Doherty, Muriel Knox and Russell, R. Lynette (ed.)
    [Sydney]
    Published: New South Wales College of Nursing
  12. Doherty, Muriel Knox, RRC (Matron, AANS and RAAF Nursing Service)
    [1914 - 1954]
    Series: Australian War Memorial, Research Centre
    Scrapbooks containing news reports, letters, cards, insignia and nominal rolls covering both wars. Letters regarding the nursing service. Photograph album presented to Matron Hetherington by patients at Reinga, 1916. Certificate of service, diaries.
    3DRL/2518
  13. Doherty, Muriel K (Matron) b: 1896, d: 1988.
    [6 items : 1946 - 1983]
    Series: Australian War Memorial, Research Centre
    Includes one letter from Warsaw in 1946 describing the state of the city, and five letters written between 1974-1983 discussing history of RAAF Nursing Service.
    PR91/169
  14. Papers of Muriel Knox Doherty, 1939-circa 1952 [manuscript]
    [1.73 m : 1939 - c. 1952]
    Series: National Library of Australia, Manuscript Collection
    MS 1518 comprises a folio of cuttings, pamphlets, letters and photographs named "Poland 1946", including "Copy of community letters from Poland 1946", war photographs and the typescript titled "Welfare services in Poland"; scrapbook with certificate inside cover stating "This records the loyal and valued services of Muriel Knox Doherty to the United Nations Relief and Rehabilitation Administration... 31 December 1946" containing papers, official letters, newspaper cuttings and photographs; typescript extracts from the Polish bulletin (Dec. 1951-Sept. 1952), on the Katyn war murders; two circular letters relating to "Youth auxiliary for European relief"; and, a large four-page newssheet from The Sydney morning herald (Sept. 2, 1939) (1 box, 1 fol. Box, 1 map folio).
    MS 1518

Encyclopedia of Australian Science

  1. Doherty, Muriel Knox
    Published: The University of Melbourne eScholarship Research Centre
    Series: Encyclopedia of Australian Science
  2. Where are the Women in Australian Science?
    McCarthy, Gavan; Morgan, Helen; Smith, Ailie; van den Bosch, Alan
    Published: Australian Science and Technology Heritage Centre, 2003
  3. Lifework: Heroes of Australian Health
    Murray, James
    Published: Focus Publishing for [Medical Benefits Fund of Australia Ltd], Edgecliff, NSW, 1997
  4. Letters from Belsen 1945: an Australian Nurse's Experiences with the Survivors of War
    Doherty, Muriel Knox, and Cornell, Judith and Russell, R. Lynette (eds)
    Published: Allen & Unwin, St Leonards, NSW, 2000
  5. The Life and Times of Royal Prince Alfred Hospital, Sydney, Australia
    Doherty, Muriel Knox and Russell, R. Lynette
    Published: New South Wales College of Nursing, Sydney, 1996
  6. Off the Record - The Life and Times of Muriel Knox Doherty 1896-1988: an Autobiography
    Doherty, Muriel Knox and Russell, R. Lynette
    Published: New South Wales College of Nursing, Glebe, NSW, 1996
  7. Who's Who in Australia 1944
    Alexander, John A.
    Published: The Herald and Weekly Times Ltd, Melbourne, 1944

Resources by Muriel Knox Doherty (2)

  1. Index to The life and times of Royal Prince Alfred Hospital, Sydney Australia : by Muriel Knox Doherty ; edited by R. Lynette Russell / [index compiled by Lorraine Doyle]
    Doyle, Lorraine
    [ Book : 1996 ]
    At University of Sydney
    This resource is very relevant to your query (score: 216,942.953)

    This resource is very relevant to your query (score: 216,942.953)

  2. Muriel Knox Doherty papers, 1923-1960s
    Doherty, Muriel Knox, 1896-1988
    [ Published : 1960 ]
    At State Library of NSW
    This resource is very relevant to your query (score: 87,395.445)

    This resource is very relevant to your query (score: 87,395.445)

Resources about Muriel Knox Doherty (5)

  1. Index to The life and times of Royal Prince Alfred Hospital, Sydney Australia : by Muriel Knox Doherty ; edited by R. Lynette Russell / [index compiled by Lorraine Doyle]
    Doyle, Lorraine
    [ Book : 1996 ]
    At University of Sydney
    This resource is very relevant to your query (score: 216,603)

    This resource is very relevant to your query (score: 216,603)

  2. Off the record - the life and times of Muriel Knox Doherty 1896-1988 : an autobiography / edited by R. Lynette Russell
    Doherty, M. K. (Muriel Knox), 1896-1988
    [ Book : 1996 ]
    At 20 libraries
    Off the record - the life and times of Muriel Knox Doherty 1896-1988 : an autobiography / edited by R. Lynette Russell
    This resource is very relevant to your query (score: 146,129.969)

    This resource is very relevant to your query (score: 146,129.969)

  3. Letters from Belsen 1945 : an Australian nurse's experiences with the survivors of war / Muriel Knox Doherty ; edited by Judith Cornell & R. Lynette Russell
    Doherty, M. K. (Muriel Knox), 1896-1988
    [ Book : 2000 ]
    Possibly online
    At 69 libraries
    Letters from Belsen 1945 : an Australian nurse's experiences with the survivors of war / Muriel Knox Doherty ; edited by Judith Cornell & R. Lynette Russell
    This resource is very relevant to your query (score: 69,110.789)

    This resource is very relevant to your query (score: 69,110.789)

  4. Mackerras family correspondence and papers, ca. 1819-1984
    Mackerras family
    [ Unpublished : 1984 ]
    At State Library of NSW
    This resource is very relevant to your query (score: 65,098.438)

    This resource is very relevant to your query (score: 65,098.438)

  5. Lifework : heroes of Australian health / James Murray
    Murray, James, 1931-
    [ Book : 1997 ]
    At 62 libraries
    Lifework : heroes of Australian health / James Murray
    This resource is very relevant to your query (score: 28,057.568)

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  1. National Council of Women of New South Wales (1896-)
    ... Founded in 1896 (the first such council in Australia) the National Council of Women of New South ... National Council of Women of New South Wales was founded on 26 June 1896 at a public meeting in the Sydney ...
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  1. NOTICE of intended distribution of estate.—Any person having any claim upon the estate of MURIEL KNOX DOHERTY, late of West
    Government Gazette of the State of New South Wales (Sydney, NSW : 1901 - 2001) Friday 30 March 1990 [Issue No.44] p 2796

    Government Gazette Private Notices

    ... NOTICE of intended diuribuiion of ctuie.—Any pcnon tuvinj any claim upon lhe etutr of MURIEL KNOX ... 109 words
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  2. NOTIFICATION OF CLOSING OF ROADS
    Government Gazette of the State of New South Wales (Sydney, NSW : 1901 - 2001) Friday 6 July 1973 [Issue No.90] p 3023

    Government Gazette Notices

    ... George Thomas and John Knox Doherty, 7 789 square metres. Road 30.175 metres wide separating portion 256 ... Parish Lawrence, County Clarence. Rds 72-1220. Urban John Vincent Kempnich, Phyllis Muriel Kempnich and ... 293 words
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  3. Government Gazette Appointments and Employment
    Commonwealth of Australia Gazette (National : 1901 - 1973) Thursday 4 January 1945 [Issue No.2] p 3

    Government Gazette Appointments And Employment

    ... Veronica Kehny, WFX3306, A.M.F. Major Margaret Jean Hanna, VFX378, A.M.F. Principal Matron Muriel Knox ... Doherty, 501020, R.A.A.F. Associate of the Royal Red Cboss. Major Ethel Jessie Bowe, VFX384, A ... 368 words
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  1. Party In Honor Of Miss Doherty
    The Advertiser (Adelaide, SA : 1931 - 1954) Wednesday 18 September 1946 p 7 Article
    ... Monday afternoon at the Lady Gowrie Club, North terrace, in honor of Miss Muriel Knox Doherty. who will ... Party In Honor Of Miss Doherty On behalf of the South Austra- <*> lian branch of the Australian ... 138 words
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  2. R.A.A.F. MATRON AT BELSEN Miss M. Doherty's Appointment
    The Sydney Morning Herald (NSW : 1842 - 1954) Saturday 7 July 1945 p 11 Article
    ... , Miss Muriel Knox Doherty, of Wollstonecraft New South Wales, has been ap pointed by UNRRA as matron of ... the European war. Miss Doherty was principal matron of the R.A.A.P. Nursing Service until May, and ... 258 words
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  3. R.A.A.F. NURSES. Miss Doherty, Matron at Richmond. MELBOURNE, Sunday.
    The Sydney Morning Herald (NSW : 1842 - 1954) Monday 16 September 1940 p 4 Article
    ... Muriel Knox Doherty. Sister Clerk in the Principal Matron's office of the Eastern .Army Command (NJS ... R.A.A.F. NURSES. Miss Doherty, Matron at Richmond. ¿ri .. 'MELBOURNE..Sunday. Appointment* öf R ... 108 words
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  1. Papers of Muriel Knox Doherty
    Doherty, M. K. (Muriel Knox), 1896-1988
    [ Unpublished : 1939-1952 ]
    At National Library
    This resource is very relevant to your query (score: 1,118.994)

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  2. Folder 3: Letters by Muriel Knox Doherty, November 1945 - March 1946
    [ Unpublished : 1946 ]
    View online
    At State Library of NSW
    Folder 3: Letters by Muriel Knox Doherty, November 1945 - March 1946
    This resource is very relevant to your query (score: 879.78)

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  3. Folder 4: Letters by Muriel Knox Doherty, April - September 1946
    [ Unpublished : 1946 ]
    View online
    At State Library of NSW
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  1. Muriel Knox Doherty - her story
    Russell RL
    Collegian (Deakin ACT)
    [ Article : 1999 ]
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  2. Muriel Knox Doherty: her story
    Russell, R. Lynnette
    Collegian
    [ Article : 1999 ]
    View online (conditions apply)
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  3. Muriel Knox Doherty - recognised at the 'Treasures' exhibition in Canberra. -letter-
    Shields L
    Collegian (Deakin ACT)
    [ Article : 2002 ]
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  4. The inauguration & development of the Prince Alfred Hospital School of Nursing 1882-1942 / by M.K. Doherty
    Doherty, M. K. (Muriel Knox), 1896-1988
    [ Conference Proceedings ]
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  1. Muriel Knox Doherty
    Muriel Knox Doherty
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  1. Muriel Knox Doherty
    Australian Broadcasting Corporation. Radio National
    [ Sound : 2000 ]
    View online
    At ABC Radio National
    Muriel Knox Doherty
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  2. Full transcript
    Australian Broadcasting Corporation. Radio National
    [ Sound : 2000-2015 ]
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    At ABC Radio National
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