A Royal Baby

The Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists would like to congratulate our Royal Patron, the Duchess of Cambridge, and of course the Duke of Cambridge, on the birth of their third child, Prince Louis Arthur Charles born on the 23rd April 2018. The College was delighted when Her Royal Highness agreed to be our patron…

Morals and Medicine: a protest outside the RCOG in 1971

In honour of International Women’s Day, this month’s post is another fantastic find in the RCOG Archive. While sorting through a collection of press cuttings gathered by the College in the 1970s, I stumbled across a cutting showing the front of the College’s Sussex Place premises and featuring a very conspicuous group of protesters. This…

Pioneers: Dame Hilda Lloyd, PRCOG 1949

This is no better way to end our series of posts on our College’s historic female members than to profile the College’s first female President, Dame Hilda Lloyd. Consultant Obstetrician and Gynaecologist, Hilda Lloyd was a woman ahead of her time. She qualified in 1916 at Birmingham Medical School during a time when almost half…

Pioneers: Gertrude Dearnley, FRCOG 1929

This month’s Pioneer’s post looks into the life and career of the illusive Gertrude Dearnley, FRCOG. Dearnley is one of the most challenging women to research in our College’s history. Photographs of her are hard to come by (one of our annual reports gave us a glimpse of only her nose!) But her contributions to…

Pioneers: Louise McIlroy, FRCOG 1929

Anyone wanting to know about the involvement of medical women in the history of the RCOG should start at the beginning. And that beginning was Dame Louise McIlroy. As well as being one of the College’s first female Fellows and a foundation Fellow of the Colleg, McIlroy was also the first women on the RCOG…

A Joint Blog for Explore Your Archive Week 2017

To mark this year’s Explore Your Archive Week, the RCOG Archive has teamed up with its sister Colleges, the Royal College of Physicians (RCP) and the Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health (RCPCH). Our joint-blog post delves into what our individual archives hold and where researchers can go to find out more about the…

Safe, simple, reliable: the hidden history of tampons

In August 1941, College co-founder and then President William Fletcher Shaw was contacted by the British Medical Association for advice on the safety of Tampax brand tampons. The British Medical Journal had included an advertisement for the brand in their July issue. The full page advert reassured readers that its products were ‘entirely safe, simple…

Pioneers: Margaret Ida Balfour (1865-1945) FRCOG 1931

This month’s Pioneers post honours Margaret Ida Balfour, an early Fellow of the College whose efforts helped shape maternity care for women in India over a century ago. Margaret Ida Balfour – known to her family simply as ‘Ida’ – was born into a large family in Edinburgh in 1865, where her father, Robert, was…

World Day for Audiovisual Heritage

The 27th of October is the UNESCO World Day for Audiovisual Hertiage, where archives, libraries, museums and other collecting institutions around the world celebrate the special qualities of the sound and moving image collections they hold. “Through images and sound, audiovisual heritage provides unique insight to the past as the basis for looking to the…

Pioneers: Margaret Basden, FRCOG 1931 (1886 – 1974)

This month, Pioneers profiles the life and work of RCOG Fellow Margaret Mary Basden. Basden was a leading obstetric and gynaecological specialist, treating women around London, including in its poorest boroughs in the early 20th century. One of her greatest contributions to maternal health and wellbeing involved getting mothers up and out of bed during…

Changes to Library Opening Hours

From Monday 18th September, the Reading Room of the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists will be changing to 10am to 4pm Monday-Friday, excluding English bank holidays and College closure days. Researchers wishing to access archive, museum and library collections outside these hours should email the Library and Heritage team to request an appointment. Where…

Pioneers: Frances Ivens (1870-1944) FRCOG 1929

This month’s Pioneers profile focuses on another veteran of Royaumont Military Hospital: Frances Ivens. Before becoming a founding Fellow of the RCOG, Ivens was a recipient of the Legion of Honour for her heroic efforts treating wounded allied soldiers, often just miles from the front lines during the First World War. Born Mary Hannah Frances…