Blair-Bell’s Cancer Curiosities

Today’s Explore Your Archive post follows the theme of scientific innovation and advancement. Not surprisingly, the heritage collections of the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists are full of treasures, curiosities and mysteries concerning the history of medicine. Our collections cover a wide range of specialties in addition to our extensive papers and publications on…

Fantastic Finds for Friday: An extra special Honorary Fellow!

This week’s Fantastic Find is not so much a ‘find’ but rather an exciting and generous donation to the RCOG Archive! The gift came from Ian Harley FRCOG, during his visit to the College from Ireland earlier this week, and came in the form of a tube containing rolled up certificates. On closer examination, these…

Fab Find for Friday: Ovarian Cancer Awareness Month

Forget about the month of March being dedicated to the Roman God, Mars, who was the god of agriculture and warfare – it is undoubtedly the month for women worldwide! The list of dates observed during March include International Women’s Day and Mother’s Day, as well as Women’s History Day, and the whole month is…

Blair-Bell 13: A man of different hats….

As I draw to the end of this phase in the cataloguing project, I begin to understand just how this collection of papers of Professor William Blair-Bell provides a wonderful story of him as a medic and a man during the 1920s and 1930s. The same themes recur over the three series of papers (S1,…

Blair-Bell 12: Important Connections in International Cancer Research Work

Two more boxes of papers relating to the career of Professor William Blair-Bell have been catalogued and repackaged since the last posting to this blog, and some quite exciting professional connections have been unearthed! As well as correspondence between 1926 and 1928 from random members of the public to Professor Blair-Bell, giving their own opinions…

Blair-Bell 11: ‘What does cause Cancer? Is it cold?’

This question was put to Professor William Blair-Bell by an anonymous correspondent sometime in 1926 or 1927, and serves as quite a good summary of the variety of letters received by him during his time spent on research work during the late-1920s. Newspapers throughout the country ran a story on the work on cancer treatments…

Blair-Bell 10: Blood Transfusions and Cancer Research

And so the cataloguing continues, and the overriding theme of these series of papers relating to Professor Blair-Bell seems to be his connection with the Liverpool Medical Research Organisation ath the University of Liverpool, including its administration, and his involvement in research into the use of lead preparations as a treatment for cancer. Some of…

Blair-Bell 7: Dirt and disarray!

This blog covers the end of this first stage in providing a comprehensive catalogue to the papers of Professor William Blair-Bell held here at the RCOG. This part of the project looked at material originally catalogued and referenced S1, and is composed of records bought by the College at auction in 1986. Catalogue descriptions consisted…

Blair-Bell 3: Letters of a very personal nature….

While in these early stages of the project almost all the files seem to have something of an interesting or unexpected nature, I am beginning to suspect that Blair-Bell’s material will produce nuggets of gold right to the end! This week, with eight more files catalogued and repackaged, it is Blair-Bell as the esteemed doctor…