"Between 1872 and 1900 Miss Nightingale used, when she was able, to send an annual letter or address to the probationer-nurses of the Nightingale School at St. Thomas' Hospital, 'and the nurses who have been trained there.' These addresses were usually read aloud by Sir Harry Verney, the chairman of the Nightingale Fund, in the presence of the probationers and nurses, and a printed copy or a lithographed facsimile of the manuscript was given to each of the nurses present, 'for private use only.' A few also were written for the Nightingale Nurses serving in Edinburgh... Since Miss Nightingale's death... heads of nursing institutions and others have asked for copies of the addresses to be read or given to nurses, and her family hope that [this] publication of a selection may do something to carry further the intention with which they were originally written."--From the Preface.