Mother of pearl Rising Sun sweetheart brooch : Sister Lilian Leitch, Australian Army Nursing Service

Accession Number REL23046.006
Collection type Heraldry
Object type Heraldry
Physical description Mother of pearl (shell)
Maker Unknown
Date made c 1918
Conflict First World War, 1914-1918

A hand carved mother of pearl rising sun badge with a brooch-pin fitting.

History / Summary

This brooch was made in Palestine, likely in Bethlehem and was was given to Sister Lilian Leitch by a member of the AIF.

Lilian Leitch was born in Brisbane in 1887 and enlisted in the Australian Army Nursing Service (AANS) in May 1915. Sister Leitch served with the AANS on Lemnos, in France and in England during the First World War and returned to Australia on 8 December 1918. She was engaged during the war but her fiance died of wounds, in France and she nursed him until his death.

She founded a private hospital in Brisbane after the war and later served as a matron in a boys' boarding school at Toowoomba, Queensland. Sister Leitch was awarded a civil OBE for services to nursing in Australia.