Letters by Florence Nightingale held at Special Collections are now available to view online.

Special Collections holds six complete and five partial letters from the famous nursing reformer, which have now been digitised and made available on our catalogue.  Explore the Florence Nightingale letters.

The letters are also available as part of the international digital collaborative The Florence Nightingale Digitization Project, hosted by the Howard Gotleib Archival Research Center at Boston University.

The aim of the project is to create a comprehensive database of digitised Nightingale correspondence – so far we are one of 18 partners who have added their letters to the database, which is available to search online. All of our letters can be found here.

The letters we hold originate from two separate archive collections. The first set of letters are all to Flora Masson, (1857-1937), who was a nurse and author from Edinburgh. She trained at St Thomas’ Hospital, London, and went on to become Matron at the Radcliffe Infirmary, Oxford, and at the Eastern Fever Hospital, Homerton. The letters date from c.1880-1910, and one of them is a reference Nightingale supplied to Flora Masson for her application to the role of Matron at the Radcliffe Infirmary (dated 3rd August 1891).

There are also two letters within the BC Egerton Leigh Autograph Collection – one to a Mrs Richard Morris, and one to Lydia Leigh (d 1893).