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Radcliffe Infirmary, Oxford.

benny1982

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#1
Hi

The above mentioned infirmary is quite a famous hospital. It was built in 1770 and is now part of the Radcliffe University in the city. The hospital is also quite big and was only taken over by the university in 2007.

I have an ancestor connection with the Radcliffe Infirmary as my great, great grandmother Thirza Edgington died there on the 28th February 1902 aged 48. She died of a carcinoma (Cancer) of the uterus and exhaustion. Her illness muct have been agony. Exhaustion was caused by the cancer, and probably bringing up 7 children over the past 23 years.

I have now emailed their archives to see if they could look up the admission registers to see how long Thirza was in there for. She was still at home 11 months before in the 1901 census so must have fallen ill shortly afterwards.

Thirza was the mother of Helen Edgington, the famous previously mentioned ancestor who moved from Oxford to Sussex in about 1907 aged 12.

Ben
 

leefer

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Indeed it was Benny..and indeed still is,its an amazing building having been there lots of times...got a real victorian feel though i think its due to close soon as a new hospital has just been opened..adjoining the hospital is the famous colledge of medicine and i suspect many a poor souls demise was studied there in the past.
 

benny1982

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Hi leefer

They are interesting photos. I hope that the archives do come up with admission registers. I wonder if she died on a cancer patients ward or a normal ward? If it was in 1902, the wards would no doubt have been huge and cavernous with echoing wooden flooring, gas lights on the ceiling and a huge fireplace at one end of the room.

Ben
 

leefer

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Would imagine it would have been a normal ward Benny...yes it would have been grim...the Chapel was very atmospheric....hope you get some joy with the records though as you know medical records are the hardest to get hold of...was she from the area?
 

benny1982

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Hi

Yes she was living in Oxford City. She was in the 1901 census at home in Castle Place, Oxford with her husband and children but obviously fell ill to cancer and died in the Infirmary the following February of 1902. That narrows down when she was admitted. I wonder if she was in there for a few months or so?

It would be good to find a floorplan of at least the ground floor. The registers might say what ward she was on, or at least their register of deaths in the Infirmary. A good idea would be to look at the 1901 census for the building as this may help me ascertain hown many wards there were.

Ben
 

p.risboy

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#7
Hi Ben,
You have just reminded me of pleasant days at the Radcliffe in my earlier years.
There used to be, and maybe still is, student nurse accomodation there.
Me and my friend had great times with those nurses.
We only used to live about 35 minutes drive from there, so it was a good 'hunting ground' if you get my drift. We all had very good and happy times, all of us.:) :)
Not far from the River Thames, so lazy days and punting. Glorious.:biggrin:

Thanks for jogging the old grey matter.:2fun:

Steve.:)
 

leefer

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http://www.bbc.co.uk/oxford/content/articles/2007/01/18/radcliffe_memories.shtml

Some great storys hear Ben..like the brain of Laurence of Arabia story!
Also Fleming first used penicilin hear in 1941,after studying it in the nearby observatory.
As for your relly..the wards were actually long but narrow with beds facing each otherand the floors were solid stone not wooden,it must have been incredibly cold in days gone by but as the above storys show it was a special hospital in many ways.
 

benny1982

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Hi

Leefer and Steve I take it you have been inside the hospital have you?

Interesting about the wards. If the floors were solid stone, then there must have been evn more of an echo in the wards. My ancestor must have been in terrible pain in her final months. Her husband James Edgington said he was present at the death on the cert so obviously he was visiting a lot.

Ben
 

p.risboy

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Hi

Leefer and Steve I take it you have been inside the hospital have you?

Interesting about the wards. If the floors were solid stone, then there must have been evn more of an echo in the wards. My ancestor must have been in terrible pain in her final months. Her husband James Edgington said he was present at the death on the cert so obviously he was visiting a lot.

Ben
Errr, not exactly. Not in the wards, but the the nurses accomodation.redf)

There was a sort of fine ashpalt on the floor, which was painted. It reduced the noise a bit, but still had to tip-toe.:biggrin:

Steve.:)
 

leefer

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Many times Ben...know this sounds funny Ben but she was lucky in a way to be there in her final months...it was the best hospital in England at the time so she probably got good care comparitivly....it was known for being a hospital of study also so who knows she may have helped future generations in a little way.
 

benny1982

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Many times Ben...know this sounds funny Ben but she was lucky in a way to be there in her final months...it was the best hospital in England at the time so she probably got good care comparitivly....it was known for being a hospital of study also so who knows she may have helped future generations in a little way.
Hi

Obviously her cancer was inoperable so they just gave her the best care in her final months. In 1902, there was little they could do to save a cancer patient, no chemotherapy in those days.

Ben
 

benny1982

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#14
Hi Steve

In those days, if someone had cancer, I would have thought that the difference in the dates between diagnosis and death for inoperable cancers was about 3 or 4 months so by the March 1901 census, she may have been in the very early stages or even cancer free if she died 11 months later in February.
 

benny1982

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#15
Update.

I emailed the Oxfordshire Medical Archives and guess what they emailed back with quite a bit of information on Thirza Edgington my gggran.

The Death registers said she had been in the Radcliffe Infirmary hopsital for one month when she died but the Surgical registers give more info. Name Edgington Thirza (mistranscribed as Teresa) aged 48, wife of a labourer, Diagnosis was cancer of the cervix, Admitted 29th January 1902, died at 11:30pm on the 28th February 1902 in Victoria Ward.

Great. Now I know the ward that she died on.

Ben
 
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