Medical Care in Bulahdelah
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A NIGHTMARE

Prior to the turn of the century, medical treatment was a nightmare as the nearest doctor at Stroud, about 36 kilometres away.

HOSPITALS

Early in the century "Granny King" (Ada Jane King) established the first Maternity Hospital (approximately where the Bulahdelah Motor Lodge now stands).

In the 1920's, we had two hospitals, each with its own doctor. Doctor Hereward Leighton Kesteven supervised a hospital in the original Pile residence and Doctor Woodland supervised a hospital on the corner of Crawford and Richmond Streets. By 1930, our fourth hospital had been established on its present site.

The first maternity hospital established by Ada Jane King, was located on the top floor of the Riverview Hotel.

Prior to the establishment of the Maternity hospital, "Granny King" as all who lived in and around the area knew her, used to go to the expectant mothers to deliver their babies, or they would go to her. At that time Ada Jane King lived on the foot of the Alum Mountain. Quite often the husbands to be would leave their wives with her to give birth, while they went into the bush for a few days, and then return when the birth was over.

Ada Jane had a terrible memory for names, and used to refer to all the men as "Mr. Whatsename".

ADA JANE (GRANNY) KING, MIDWIFE

Ada Jane King (nee Edgell) was Midwife in Bulahdelah from 1906 until her death from a stroke in 1936; she was born in Glebe Street, Penarth, Glamorgan, Wales, 16th January 1872, and emigrated to Australia when she was 11 years old.

After leaving her Alum Mountain home, she purchased a house situated where the Bulahdelah Motor Lodge stands today on the Pacific Highway. With both of her homes she established a private cemetery, for which many of the stillborn babies were buried. At her Alum Mountain home, her own stillborn daughter (Ulalia) was buried.

King Family(PD).jpg (32293 bytes)

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The King Family.

(Click on a picture above to see a larger version.

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Copyright 2000, Malcolm Carrall, Archives Officer, The Bulahdelah & Districts Historical Society Inc., 20 Ann Street, Bulahdelah, New South Wales, Australia, 2423. Original content in these Web pages is copyright. Apart from any use permitted under the Copyright Act, no part may be produced by any process or any other exclusive right exercised without written permission from the copyright holder. Published by Malcolm Carrall.

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