Letter from Samuel Clark's mother to his sister, 1856.
© Science Museum / Science & Society Picture Library
Letter from Sarah Dye, the mother of soldier Samuel Clark, who was under English nurse and hospital reformer Florence Nightingale's (1820-1910) care at the Castle Hospital in Balaclava during the Crimean war (1854-1856). Clark died after being ill with fever for seven weeks, and Nightingale wrote a compasionate letter to his family informing them of his death. Nightingale devoted her life to the sick and suffering. She volunteered for duty in the Crimean War and whilst at the hospital barracks at Scutari, drastically reduced the mortality rate by imposing a strict discipline and high standards of sanitation. In 1859, she wrote 'Notes on Nursing', and in 1861 she founded St Thomas' School of Nursing in London.