August 2014 marks the centenary of the Red Cross in Armidale. This organisation was formed in the shadows of World War I and its members contributed to many of the activities designed to support the wounded and sick troops and the innocent victims of the war.
The UNE Heritage Centre has been collecting material and researching the activities of the local Red Cross for many years. In particular, we are interested in finding additional information on the Booloominbah Convalescent Hospital that ran in Armidale between 1916 and 1919. We are keen to find any additional photos or papers in addition to the fine photo albums we already hold. There are many individual stories of the returning soldiers. One soldier was a British serviceman who moved on to Canada after spending time in Booloominbah, while at least one other soldier married a nurse and returned to Armidale after the war. Many of the patients can be seen visiting the homes of local people and Armidale’s tourist sites as part of their rehabilitation.
The Heritage Centre plans to launch an exhibition to reflect on the centenary of the Armidale Red Cross and would like to hear from anybody who can add to our understanding of this time in our local history.
Contact: William Oates by email at woates[at]une.edu.au