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Lt. Catherine Hauptman - 216th General Hospital

Sun Feb 15, 2015 16:01


You have provided me a constant reminder of my late mother and I deeply thank you for this. At this point in time I doubt correct attribution is critical but I need you to at least know that my mother ( Lt. Catherine Hauptman) is unquestionably the nurse farthest to the left in the group having tea. I suspect I know some of the other faces as well, though all but one of those I'm aware of have passed.

While unquestionably my mother on the left, it is possible that she was included in this photo when on medical leave while in England. Otherwise this photo is more likely to be of 216th nurses taken at Frome. My mother related stores of tea and watercress sandwiches while there. (I believe in a private residence.) This while the 216th General Hospital was located at Longleat.

While I'm writing... Using Google Earth I've had a close look at Longleat. Evidence of the 216th can still be seen in the meadow directly across the lake from the manor house. The outlines of foundations can clearly be seen where the hospital huts were once located.

Once again my thanks and a request... Please consider at least including my mother's name in the photo. I realize at this point that definitive proof will be elusive but I know my mother just as do you know yours. There is no question as far as her identity. The nurse in question is, in fact, Catherine Mary Hauptman (1921-2000) from Bloomington, Illinois.


Bruce R. Miller

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Location: chichester,west sussex

Re: Lt. Catherine Hauptman - 216th General Hospital

Mon Feb 16, 2015 18:13

Google Longleat 1945

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Joined: Sun Feb 15, 2015 15:30

Re: Lt. Catherine Hauptman - 216th General Hospital

Mon Feb 16, 2015 19:31

Thank you sir! I'll do just that.

The Longleat manor house was closed at that time, so I understand why my mother never visited. But Stonehenge? The nurses had time off and the had transportation. She never got there. Then again she was 23 years old at the time as were most of the nurses. Too young to appreciate what was there I guess.

One thing I always want the British people to know is how much they were appreciated. Mom always spoke well of her treatment by the locals and the hospitality offered by folks who really couldn't afford it. She also related the trip south from Scotland by train. At every stop the nurses were plied with mutton pies. I hate to relate that these were unappreciated even though the people who gave them were. Apparently the pies arrived on one side of the train and were immediately discarded on the other.

As to the photo in question I tend to believe that it may be totally misrepresented. The older woman immediately in front of my mother looks suspiciously familiar as do some others. Obviously I can't be 100% sure as I really didn't know any of them as young women. Her married name if I'm correct was Gazella Keslinke and I believe her maiden name was Peltz. She was the senior officer in their group and she and my mother were lifelong friends. Gazella was from Chicago and was the same age as my father... Born in 1913.

My sincere thanks for your interest.

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