New book celebrates the life, career, and influence of Georgina Pope

Latest book from Island Studies Press to launch in Charlottetown and Summerside
Wednesday, May 16, 2018
Katherine Dewar

Island Studies Press will launch its newest book, Called to Serve: Georgina Pope, Canadian Nursing Military Heroine, by Katherine Dewar in both Charlottetown and Summerside. The Charlottetown launch is Thursday, May 24, at 7:00 pm at the Carriage House at Beaconsfield Historic House, while the Summerside launch is Sunday, June 24, 2:00 pm, at the Eptek Art and Culture Centre.

Called to Serve documents the life and times of Prince Edward Island’s Georgina Fane Pope (1862– 1938), daughter of William Henry Pope and Helen DesBrisay Pope. Her journey takes us from PEI, where, inspired by Florence Nightingale, she developed a “burning desire” to become an army nurse; to the Boston States where she trained; to the battlefields of Africa and Europe where she served as a nursing sister and Superintendent of Nurses―and established the nursing corps of the Canadian Army Medical Corps. Matron Pope was the first Canadian Nurse decorated with a Royal Red Cross, Class 1.

In 2007 Georgina Pope’s bronze bust became one of the 14 heroic figures forming a part of the Valiants Memorial in Confederation Square, Ottawa. She also appears on the Canadian $5 coin.

Georgina Pope will also be honoured at a “Celebration of Service” in the Atrium of the Daniel J. MacDonald Building in Charlottetown on Thursday, May 17, at 7:00 pm. Local actors will bring her story to life, accompanied by the PEI Regiment Band and the Canada Remembers Chorus. An exhibition entitled “Inspired by Nightingale: Called by God” will also open. Admission is free and everyone is welcome.

Katherine Dewar is the author of the award-winning book, Those Splendid Girls: The Heroic Service of Prince Edward Island Nurses in the Great War, 1914 –1918. Dewar is retired from a career as a nursing instructor at the PEI School of Nursing, and is now committed to researching PEI’s colourful nursing history. Those Splendid Girls was shortlisted for an Atlantic Book Award, won the Publication of the Year award from the PEI Museum and Heritage Foundation and the City of Summerside’s Heritage and Culture department. Dewar herself is the recipient of the PEI Museum and Heritage Foundation Award of Honour for her outstanding contribution to Prince Edward Island heritage. 

The launches are free and open to the public. For more information, please contact Laurie at or (902) 894-2881. Books will be on sale for $27.95 in bookstores in mid-May.

The University of Prince Edward Island prides itself on people, excellence, and impact and is committed to assisting students reach their full potential in both the classroom and community. With roots stemming from two founding institutions—Prince of Wales College and Saint Dunstan’s University—UPEI has a reputation for academic excellence, research innovation, and creating positive impacts locally, nationally, and internationally. UPEI is the only degree granting institution in the province and is proud to be a key contributor to the growth and prosperity of Prince Edward Island.

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