H.M. Queen Mary’s Committee for District Nursing Medal, silver-gilt and enamels, hallmarked for London with date letter ’n’ for 1912, mounted on silver bar also hallmarked for 1912, with ribbon, and housed in its fitted case. Rare. Condition: Good Very Fine. In 1859, Liverpool merchant and philanthropist William Rathbone employed a nurse named Mary Robinson to care for his wife at home during her final illness. After his wife's death Rathbone decided to employ Robinson to nurse people in their own homes who could not afford medical care. The success of this early experiment encouraged him to campaign for more nurses to be employed in the community. This was the beginning of organised district nursing. By the end of the 19th century, with the help of Florence Nightingale and the approval of Queen Victoria, the movement became a national voluntary organisation responsible for setting standards and training nurses. In 1887 'the women of England' raised a Jubilee Fund of £70,000 to mark Victoria's Golden Jubilee. The Queen announced that the money should be used for nursing, and Queen Victoria's Jubilee Institute for Nurses was chartered in 1889. Rosalind Paget was the first Superintendent, and later Inspector-General. Queen Alexandra agreed to be patron in 1901, and a Queen has been Patron of the charity ever since. From 1928 the Institute was known as The Queen's Institute of District Nursing, until it assumed its present name in 1973.