This collection includes the records of the Royal Newcastle Hospital (1866+), Wallsend District Hospital and Newcastle Western Suburbs Hospital (1890+). Although the hospital records that have survived go back to the 1860s, it is interesting to reflect that the first hospital at Newcastle had been built over fifty years earlier by an eccentric Knight and convict adventurer, Sir Henry Brown Hayes (1762-1832). In 1801 Sir Henry had been transported to New South Wales for kidnapping an Irish heiress, Mary Pike, and seven years later he was sent from Sydney to toil in the Newcastle coal mines. It was during his Newcastle sojorn that Sir Henry built Bachelor's Hall which became the first hospital after Hayes left Newcastle about 1810. The Hospital Archives are extremely valuable for the history of medicine and we find, for example, in 1892, when a hospital was first opened at Wallsend that operations were performed on a table in the Hospital's Board Room!
Please note: Access to the Hunter Area Health Service records is restricted for the following periods, from the date of their creation.
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