OLIVE ILLA POWELL

OLIVE ILLA POWELL
Reynolds Memorial Hospital
Class of 1918

(Uniform not identified - Red Cross?)


Submitted by Phil & June Wheeler.
(October 2003)

     Olive Illa Powell, born September 1, 1893 in Fairview, Marshall County, W. Va., was the daughter of William Ward Powell and Martha "Mattie" Alcinda Leggett.
     Following graduation from nursing school, Olive was employed by the Baltimore and Ohio Railroad during the flu epidemic that was raging at that time.
     Her career was shortened by her marriage to Charles M. Wheeler of Rowlesburg, Preston County, W. Va. on September 16, 1919. Their three sons and a daughter experienced the nursing skill of their mother. The three "H" enemas were the "cure-all" for childhood diseases!
     Olive resided in Rowlesburg for the remainder of her life. At one time she was a school nurse and she also performed nursing care for patients in their homes. She was known for her gentle care and tollhouse cookies that she always brought for the families.
     Until the 1950s, Olive was a relief nurse for several weeks a year at the Marshall County Infirmary. Her sister, "Bess" Powell Harris, was the director of the infirmary and, although not an R. N., she performed her duties well. The patient load was small, several women and maybe a dozen men. Their duties, besides nursing care, were to cook and feed the patients. It has been said that the floors were clean enough to eat from.



BACK