Melbourne District Nursing Society (MDNS) was established in 1885 to care for the sick poor in their own homes in the slums of inner Melbourne. Original founders included Reverend Charles Strong, Lady Clarke and members of the Simpson and Caffyn families. Over the years MDNS expanded to provide home nursing services to all communities throughout Metropolitan Melbourne and the Mornington Peninsular. It became known as Royal District Nursing Service (RDNS) in 1966. More recently we have merged with RSLCare (based in Queensland) to become one of Australia's largest not for profit Aged Care providers as a result RDNS is now known as Bolton Clarke. Our history archive documents the organisation from its beginnings until the present and includes annual reports , newspaper clippings, uniforms, documents, an extensive photo collection and oral histories.

Our collection

Royal Distirct Nursing Service History Archive

Our history archive dates from 1885 and documents the organisation from its beginnings until the present. Topics covered in the archive include Melbourne District Nursing Society( 1885-1957); Melbourne District Nursing Service (1957-1966) ; Royal Melbourne District Nursing Service ((1966-2017 ) ; The After-Care Home (1926-1934 ); The After-Care Hospital (1934-1957 ). The collection focuses on nursing care, nurses, midwifery, administration, social conditions and district / community nursing in Victoria. Items in the collection include:

Documents - including Board minutes, Annual Reports, letters; documentation from government, Hospital & Charities Commission and it's various successors; Records -matrons reports, registers, practice & procedure manuals; Reports and papers on nursing and organisational issues; Photographs (prints) of events, people, nurses and practice situations dating from the late 1890s onwards; Textiles including hats, uniforms, and flags; Artefacts and equipment including a collection of nursing equipment and general paraphernalia. There are also newspaper clippings, oral histories and videos and dvds..

Themes: Building Victoria's industries and workforce