Ursula (Ulla) Chaplin , M.D.

Ursula (Ulla) Chaplin , M.D.

b: 30 NOV 1869
d: 1937
Little Baddow


UK [Letters from Ursula Chaplin to Ayrton and Edith Chaplin from Glasgow University]

15th January, 7 Bowmont Gardens

My dear Mother,

I can't write to Brisbane this week as I have no foreign note but I will next. I have been very busy arranging about that play, it is to be on Wednesday and they are not nearly ready for it, and don't know their parts or anything. I have got to be the Curate after all. The dresses are much approved of, and I have got a child, the same we had last year, he looks most sweet, and cuddles the doll in the most affectionate manner; I know that at any rate will fetch the audience. Miss Galloway has been talking about it to everyone, which is very tiresome of her, I hope it will go decently. Miss Buckley won’t act, but she is a standby in doing odd jobs. Have you got Henry's report yet, if so I wish you would either send it or tell me about his work, and how he has got on. Exams are coming upon me thick and fast but I can't attend to them till this affair is over. Yesterday I gave chloroform all by myself with the Jonker, to a man, it did very well. The Jonker is a sort of india rubber mask, this has an opening at the top through which air can pass, a feather is so fixed over the opening that it rises and falls with every breath the patient takes, so that by watching the feather you can tell how the breathing is going. Chloroform vapour is pumped from a bottle into the mask, so the patient is anaesthetised only by the vapour, and there is no danger of the fluid going down the throat or dropping on the face. I took out about ten stitches in the small boys knee, nobody else has done it.

Your loving child
U Chaplin

22nd January
7 Bowmont Gardens

My dear Father,

We had a Japanese play last Wednesday, it went off very well indeed, we made the dresses, all but one, when I was home in the Christmas holidays and I borrowed some things from the Ayrtons. The play was a little farce translated from Japanese that we got out of a book from Tina Bell's. I took the chief part which was that of Curate of a Buddhist temple. The audience was very appreciative and they thought it was such a good idea, so original etc. etc.. The Arts said they would never have thought of it, and Miss Buckley told them it needed medicals or at least science people to think of anything new.

I don't a bit mind acting before Scots because if you let yourself go in the least bit, they think you are a very fine actor, as they call it. Mrs Wyper rather wants us to do it at her house but Jeannie won't take it on herself to get up a company though I have promised to lend them the things, so I suppose they will let it slide. I am having a good time in hospital, the chief gives me a good many things to do, he let me take out stitches one day, none of the others have done that. A week ago I gave a man chloroform all by myself, and it went very well. When you want to make them hear you have to yell at them, this man began to put up his head, before he was under of course, so the chief called out loud "put down your head" and told me about it; so the man reared up his head once more, and I called out, and everybody laughed, but the man did put down his head.

One of the seniors yesterday opened a whitlow in three places, I hope I shall do one some time, but they are not very common here I think. We are to have a surgery exam on Monday which is a great bore, systematic is not half as good as practical. We had a physiology exam last week, but it was on the afternoon of the play, so I didn't do much good at it. This afternoon I am going to College Chapel to take another student; I don't go now because there are more students going and it gives me no joy because they will make us into a procession to follow after the Professors, it is all the fault of the idiot girls for they wouldn't stand firm.

I hope you have had a nice time, how did you get on with the captain and mates, and did the cat and the dog ever make friends?

You're loving child

7 Bowmont Gardens, 5/2/93

My dear Father,

Last Wednesday I went to the medical ball, Miss Galloway chaperoned about 16 of us, but she took me in her cab, which was very nice of her. We stopped till nearly 3 a.m. I danced everything except the Reel and first waltz which I don't think was bad for a stranger. The Reel was lovely, I sat up in the gallery with Miss Galloway and watched them. They leaped in the air, and shouted and dashed about, it was tremendously exciting.

I have given chloroform five times now, and twice the house surgeon asked me to help someone else give it. I am still in the accident ward with Miss Anderson and we dress the outside cases, crushed fingers, whitlow and the like. I have one side of the ward and she has the other. I have only one good case now on my side, a crushed leg which has just managed to hold on, it was complicated by the man having very bad periostitis (supposed to be) in his right arm, and they cut down to see what was the matter and clear up the diagnosis, and at the same time it was the best thing they could do for the patient, and has quite relieved his pain in the arm which was very severe. The cut was done up and healed, and yesterday I had to take out the stitches, because the chief said it was the dresser's work to take them out, and he didn't see why he should do it, so of course I was only too pleased. I dress the boy who had a very bad whitlow which one of the students operated on, and long for the day to arrive on which I shall be allowed to open one.

I hope you are having nice weather. Miss Buckley and I were both top in our last Physiology exam, wasn't it funny, we got 88%. We are afraid the next will be a case of "how are the mighty fallen" as we both did bad papers. I am going to take her to hospital next Saturday for her first operation.
Your loving child
U Chaplin

7 Bowmont Gardens, 19/3/93

My dear Father,

Two days ago we had an emergency case brought in. It was a girl of 13 with a diphtheritic throat, she was brought straight from her home to the table and of course not prepared at all. Dr Fleming did tracheotomy at once, he was as cool as could be over it, all the other doctors there were as excited as we were, and the house surgeon who gave chloroform looked ready to faint. The girl was livid and blue and gasping, and Dr F. poked about for what seemed to an age, really only about ten minutes, then the man helping him told us to stand back, and Dr F. made the incision into the trachea, and the girl coughed up the membrane, and in an instant, the red blood flew to her face and she began to breathe naturally. It was a fine demonstration. I am very curious to see how she will do afterwards, because Dr F. doesn't steam kettle his patients like other men, but approves of dry heat, and it will be interesting to see how she gets on.

We are to have a practical surgery exam at the end of the term, we shall have patients to diagnose and it will be very difficult I think, because they can't give us easy things like a smash or a recent fracture. I am taking in the Glasgow University magazine for this term, it is rather foolish, but the pictures in it are good, and we have a page in it so I think it is proper to uphold it. My next exam is in October, the subjects are Anatomy and Physiology. Anatomy is very difficult but one must know it pretty well for surgery.

I gave the pony skull to our Museum after Christmas, Dr Bryce was much delighted with it, and he has used it a good bit in his lectures on the skull, he likes to show different kinds. I am going to try and get a dog's skull in the holidays, I should think I might be able to get one from the Dogs Home perhaps, or I shall bring up the sheep's skeleton.

I hope you are enjoying yourself,
Your loving child,
U Chaplin
  • 30 NOV 1869 - Birth - ; Looe, Cornwall
  • 1937 - Death - ; Pyne Cottage, Little Baddow, Essex
  • 29 JAN 1897 - Fact -
  • 1902 - Fact -
John Clarke Chaplin
25 AUG 1806 - 2 JUN 1856
Ayrton Chaplin , Rev
19 OCT 1842 - 1930
Matilda Adriana Ayrton
1 JUN 1813 - 26 JAN 1899
Henry Pyne
2 JAN 1809 - 9 FEB 1885
Edith Elizabeth Pyne
28 SEP 1845 - 1928
Harriet James
25 DEC 1819 - 13 MAR 1895
Family Group Sheet - Child
PARENT (M) Ayrton Chaplin , Rev
Birth19 OCT 1842Edgbaston, Warwickshire, England (1881 Census)
Marriage2 JAN 1868to Edith Elizabeth Pyne
FatherJohn Clarke Chaplin
MotherMatilda Adriana Ayrton
PARENT (F) Edith Elizabeth Pyne
Birth28 SEP 1845Porchester Place, London, Middlesex
Marriage2 JAN 1868to Ayrton Chaplin , Rev
FatherHenry Pyne
MotherHarriet James
FUrsula (Ulla) Chaplin , M.D.
Birth30 NOV 1869Looe, Cornwall
Death1937Pyne Cottage, Little Baddow, Essex
FAdriana (Audrey) Chaplin
Birth26 APR 1872
Death15 DEC 1945Woodham Walter, Essex (at Bassetts, part of which is in Woodham Walter and part in Little Baddow)
MarriageJUN 1895to John Walter (Jack) Gregory , F.R.S., D.Sc. Lond
MHenry Ayrton Chaplin , L.R.C.P. & S.
Birth21 AUG 187618 Kent Terrace, Regent's Park, London, Middlesex, England
Death2 JUL 1905Salaga, Northern Territory, Gold Coast, West Africa
[S12758] Ann Gregory (Mendell)'s copy of 'A short account of the Families of Chaplin and Skinner........' with annotations by Ayrton Chaplin & others
[S3841] The James, Pyne, Dixon Family Book, compiled by Alicia C Percival, publ London 1977
[S9164] Effie Ray-Jones by word of mouth or in writing