Nurse Catherine MacAllister

Photograph of Nurse Catherine MacAllister.


Courtesy of Mrs Mairi Campbell

Catherine McAllister was the nurse on Tiree from 1930-36. From Bruichladdich on Islay, she was the first nurse to use a motor bike and sidecar on her rounds. Before her the nurses walked or bicycled to see their patients.

Poultices were much used in those days. An islander, who was a young child with pneumonia in the 1930s, remembers the nurse coming in every day, making up oatmeal porridge on the stove and plastering it on his chest under a bandage.

She left Tiree to work as a nurse in Dalmally but returned to marry Alex MacLean from Balevullin, Argyll Estate’s Ground Officer. Sadly, she was drowned in Glasgow in July 1950 and is buried in Soroby cemetery. Her husband died a few months later in the dentist’s chair in Oban.

Black and white photograph of nurse Catherine MacAllister in the 1930s.

Catherine MacAllister from Bruichcladdich, Islay, nurse on Tiree from 1930-36. She was the first to use a motorbike and sidecar on her rounds.

Object Details

Other Number: M51

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