A book of true stories from Beckett Park military hospital in Headingley, Leeds, during the First World War
Most of the surgeons who operated on soldiers injured in the First World War already held ranks in the Royal Army Medical Corps (RAMC) prior to 1914, in readiness for a conflict which seemed inevitable. Many of the surgeons at Beckett Park Hospital practised surgery at Leeds General Infirmary, and are commemorated in the book "Leeds in the Great War" published in 1923. Surgeons who were not associated with Leeds General Infirmary also worked at Beckett Park during the First World War, and were joined in 1917 by orthopaedic surgeons from America.
"Stories from the War Hospital" recounts the contributions made by some of the doctors and surgeons who treated the soldiers at Beckett Park military hospital, which was officially the 2nd Northern General Hospital. The stories of over twenty surgeons are described in the book, including full accounts of the surgeons outlined below.
The First World War caused traumatic injuries to many of the soldiers, from severe facial wounds to loss of limbs. Many of the severe wounds suffered by soldiers in the First World War were difficult to treat.
TO READ THE FULL ACCOUNTS OF THE BECKETT PARK DOCTORS AND SURGEONS IN "STORIES FROM THE WAR HOSPITAL", ORDER THE BOOK FROM THE ONLINE SHOP.
Click image to see a list of chapters in the book "Stories from the War Hospital"
JOSEPH FAULKNER DOBSON was the driving force in transforming Beckett Park from a training college into a military hospital, and was its first administrator. He had trained at Leeds Medical School and became a demonstrator of anatomy before being appointed a surgeon at the Leeds General Infirmary.
HARTLEY S CARTER was born in Leeds and served for two years as a captain at Beckett Park, having been resident medical officer at Leeds Public Dispensary. One of his special interests was causalgia, a systemic and intensely painful disease caused by gunshot wounds. Carter also worked on scars, and was probably acquainted with the case of Robert Bass, whose story is told in the book. One of his other activities at Beckett Park was to act as literary editor for the hospital's magazine, "The Blue Band", which was published largely as a result of his own efforts.
Some of the doctors and surgeons who treated these wounds at Beckett Park Hospital in Leeds, often pioneering new techniques in, for example, facial reconstruction, are commemorated in "Stories from the War Hospital".
WALTER THOMPSON was educated at Leeds Medical School and in Berlin, where he took lodgings with Sir Berkeley Moynihan, his lifelong friend. He became one of the foremost operating surgeons in Yorkshire. During the First World War, he spent a year with the medical services in Salonica, Greece, before returning to Leeds and working at Beckett Park Hospital.
W MAXWELL MUNBY's specialism was maxillofacial surgery. He was the RAMC captain in charge of the Department for Treatment of Injuries to the Face and Jaws at Beckett Park Hospital. Munby was one of the pioneers of reconstruction during the First World War, dealing with traumatised faces, due either to bone injury or injuries to the soft parts only, which gave rise to various disabilities.