New Acquisitions to the Archive
Just a quick post to thank all the people who have donated to the archive over the last couple of years.
We regularly get offers of case registers, dug up in attics or discovered during house clear outs when relatives pass away or go into a home. These are always most welcome donations to the archive as they are such an interesting part of our social and medical history and whilst many of the books themselves can’t be made available for public access due to data protection they will, of course one day become accessible and without the personal information can still be an incredibly interesting research tool.
It is important to look at these collections from the various different angles they offer us. Not only are they medical notes on the health and physical conditions of mothers and babies but they are also historical information on the way this was recorded at various points in time. They tell us what kind of care women and babies received or could expect to receive, sometimes they even tell us personal information about a women’s life, such as her home circumstances. But they are also a record of the midwife and they can tell us a lot about her life as well.
Last week I was given a personal collection of papers which was such a wonderful accession to the archives. It contains not only the case registers detailing all the births she attended over her 30 plus year career, but also all her medical certificate, references she was given. It all builds up a picture of her professional career and gives us a glimpse into the person she perhaps was. The material is in an almost immaculate condition. I was told she kept it all wrapped in foil and stored in a tin, as many people did to protect in the event of fire.
As our displays at Union Street develop we will likely start searching for specific items to fill holes in the collections but in the mean time please do think of us if you come across historic midwifery material. We can not take duplicates items but we are always interested in developing our collections.
Please see the link for our current Collections Development policy