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…

Pioneers: Ruth Nicholson, FRCOG 1931

This month’s Pioneers post explores the life and work of Dr Ruth Nicholson (1884-1963). Ruth was one of the foremost medical women in the North of England during the early 20th century. Recently, we were lucky enough to ask questions about Ruth to Rosemary Nicholson, wife of Ruth’s nephew and an advocate for the remarkable…

New addition to the Archive: Papers of Morris Myer Datnow

Earlier this month, the College received a remarkable donation of unique archives from the descendants of the late Morris Myer Datnow (1901-1962, FRCOG 1939). Datnow was a founder member of the College and a close colleague and friend of RCOG co-founder Professor William Blair-Bell. Datnow was born in South Africa in 1901 and did his…

Pioneers: Louisa Martindale (1873-1966) FRCOG 1933

Louisa Martindale was a pioneering surgeon, an ardent suffragist and one of the most influential figures in Brighton in the early 20th century. She was Brighton’s first female GP. She served with the Scottish Women’s Hospital at Royaumont during the First World War and as a surgeon in London during the Second World War. She…

Pioneers: Frances Mabel Huxley

This month’s Pioneer is Frances Mabel Huxley (1884-1969) Frances Huxley was a Manchester University educated gynaecologist whose work on postural apnoea in Glasgow earned her the MD with gold medal in 1912. She was respected and a brilliant medical student, however her application for a senior resident post at St Mary’s Hospital in Manchester caused…