Mary Seacole: global nurse extraordinaire.

Journal of advanced nursing

PubMedID: 25382171

Staring-Derks C, Staring J, Anionwu EN. Mary Seacole: global nurse extraordinaire. J Adv Nurs. 2014;.
AIMS
A discussion of recently discovered literature that reveals how after the Crimean War ended in 1856, Jamaican nurse, doctress and entrepreneur Mary Seacole travelled more widely and gained further international recognition than had previously been appreciated.

BACKGROUND
New findings demonstrate that Seacole's international charitable and business activities were reported more widely than realised. Recently discovered literature uncovers her networking and strategic skills in various social milieus. A former Scutari nurse and 39 other women, offered their service to Seacole to nurse British soldiers in India. Newspapers also reported the medal she had been awarded from the Turkish government.

DESIGN
Discussion paper.

DATA SOURCES
Digitized 19th-century newspaper reports, and 1857 Dutch and 1858 French translations of Seacole's autobiography and a recently discovered handwritten letter dated 1 October 1857 from Seacole to Sir Henry Storks, at the time Secretary for Military Correspondence at the War Office, London.

IMPLICATIONS FOR NURSING
Awareness of the findings affords a more thorough understanding of the scope and diversity of nursing history. This can provide valuable role models for the 21st century generations of competent and self-confident healthcare professionals. The new evidence offers further testimony that Seacole can truly be considered as one such figurehead.

CONCLUSIONS
British and international primary sources reveal Mary Seacole as an historical and charismatic global phenomenon, more than had been previously realised.