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Biographical entry Jeffries, Lewis Wibmer (1884 - 1971)

9 August 1884
Derby, England
6 October 1971
Adelaide, South Australia, Australia
Physician, Surgeon and Military doctor


Lewis Jeffries was a leading Adelaide general practitioner and decorated war-time surgeon. Serving in the Australian Imperial Force from 1914 to 1920, Jefferies worked in France, Egypt, Gallipoli and London. From 1933-1947 he was appointed Inspector General of hospitals in South Australia, which included chairmanship of the Royal Adelaide Hospital Board. Jeffries was acting medical officer for the Red Cross Blood Transfusion Service until his death in 1971.


Jeffries graduated from Medicine at the University of Adelaide in 1907. He spent the next 6- 7 years working at various hospitals around the world including Kadina, South Australia; Johns Hopkins Hospital, Baltimore, United States of America; Children's Hospital, London, United Kingdom; and the Church Missionary Society Hospital, Kashmir. When war broke out in 1914 Jeffries promptly joined the Australian Imperial Force where he served for 6 years. This culminated in Jeffries being appointed lieutenant-colonel and assistant Director of medical services Australian Imperial Force Headquarters, London c1918-1920. Upon his return to Adelaide in 1920, Jeffries went back to general practice and held many prestigious positions, including Inspector General of hospitals in South Australia (1933-47). 1951 saw Jeffries return to the armed forces as camp hospital commander (1951-c1953). Jeffries once again returned to Adelaide where he died in 1971.


1900 - 1902
Education - Studied at Prince Alfred College. Location: Adelaide, South Australia
1903 - 1907
Education - Bachelor of Medicine (MB) and Bachelor of Surgery (BS) completed at the University of Adelaide. Location: Adelaide, South Australia
1914 - 1915
Career position - Captain in the Australian Army Medical Corps
1914 - 1920
Career position - Military service with the Australian Imperial Force
Award - Distinguished Service Order (DSO) received
December 1916 - January 1918
Career position - Major with the 12th Field Ambulance
20 December 1917
Life event - Married Shirley Frances Singleton. Location: St George's Church, Bloomsbury, London
1918? - 1920?
Career position - Leutenant-Colonel and Assistant Director of Medical Services at the Australian Imperial Force Headquarters in London
Award - Officer of the Order of the British Empire (OBE)
1920 - 1932
Career position - General Practitioner. Location: South Australia
1933 - 1947
Career position - Inspector General of Hospitals in South Australia and Chair of the Royal Adelaide Hospital Board. Location: South Australia
1950? - 1971
Medical Officer for the Red Cross Blood Transfusion Service. Location: South Australia
1951 - 1953?
Career position - Commander at the army camp hospital. Location: Korea?

Archival resources

Australian War Memorial Research Centre

  • Lewis Wibmer Jeffries - Records; Australian War Memorial Research Centre. Details

Private hands (Jeffries, J.S.)

  • Lewis Wibmer Jeffries - Records, 1884 - 1971; Private hands (Jeffries, J.S.). Details

Published resources

Book Sections

  • Gurner, C. M., 'Jeffries, Lewis Wibmer (1884-1971), Medical Practitioner and Soldier' in Australian Dictionary of Biography, Bede Nairn and Geoffrey Serle, eds, vol. 9 (Melbourne: Melbourne University Press, 1983), pp. 475-476. Details


McCarthy, G.J.