Wednesday, March 17, 2010

(Not so) Wordless Wednesday: Ivis Moore Mew

This is the Moore sister missing from the photograph in last week's post. Ivis Moore Mew was born September 12, 1905, on a farm in Lewisville, Texas. Her family migrated to Bray, Oklahoma in 1918 as tenant farmers, and they later moved to East Ward, Marlow. Ivis played basketball at Marlow High School and in her junior year in 1923, she was named all-state guard after playing in the state semifinal championship game in Stillwater. After graduation, she took a job as a housekeeper for the Smythe family for a dollar a day, and later worked as a waitress at the Marlow Cafe.

In 1926, Ivis hitched a ride to Bayside, Texas, by horse and wagon, and then rode a trolley into Corpus Christi to Spohn Hospital . She was the first person accepted into the new Spohn Nursing School, on September 1.

To pay for her training, Ivis took a job as a cook at Mrs. Russell's Boarding House. As a nursing student, she received $8 a month for preparing oatmeal for the nuns and students. This increased to $10 the second year and $12 the third. She graduated on May 15, 1930, and was cited for "sacrifices made" as part of the first nurse training school ever for Corpus Christi.

After graduating, Ivis received $60 a month her first year and $120 a month the following year when she became a night supervisor. Initially, nurses worked seven days a week, and Ivis did not recieve a week off until her second year - and then was too busy to take it. She ended up working her first two years without a day off.

Ivis met her future husband, Benjamin George Mew, while she was a student nurse. He worked for Dr. Arthur E. Spohn, founder of the hospital, as a carriage man, taking care of the horses and carriage the doctor used for house calls and driving him on his rounds. They married on October 15, 1934. Ben was about 26 years older than Ivis, and he passed away April 14, 1949.

Ivis was a nurse at Spohn and at the Ada Wilson Crippled Children's Hospital in Corpus Christi until 1961, when she returned to Oklahoma to care for her aging parents. She worked in nursing homes in Marlow, Rush Springs, and Chickasha, and the Talley-Walker Hospital, and assisted in opening the Shannon Springs Nursing Center in Chickasha, serving as the first Director of Nursing. Ivis passed away on November 11, 2004, at age 99.

© Amanda Pape - 2010

1 comment:

  1. Amanda,
    What a beautiful story about a lovely, unselfish woman. I can't imagine 2 years without a day off. How tired she must have been, yet she persevered. How lucky her patients were to have such a devoted caretaker.
    Thanks for sharing!