Word of the Month: de Ribes Bag

Welcome to the RCM Heritage Blog’s newest feature: Word of the Week. In it we take an entry from The Midwife’s Pronouncing Dictionary and Encyclopaedia, beginning with the 1929 edition, and provide some historical context using the museum, archive and library collections of the Royal College of Midwives.

Mary Wroe: The Midwife’s Tale Oral History Collection

Our next look at the recently released Midwife’s Tale Oral History Collection is an extract of an interview with Mary Wroe covering her experiences as a community midwife. Mary was born in 1908 in a Yorkshire mining village. She was a miner’s daughter and trained as a midwife in 1931 before returning to her home…

Esther Silverton: The Midwife’s Tale Oral History Collection

A retired midwife delivers an exuberant and detailed account of her first solo delivery. Esther Silverton was born in Portsmouth in 1916, and trained as a nurse, then midwife, during the Second World War having been largely deprived of educational opportunities earlier in life. Apart from an initial spell in a small maternity hospital, she…

Eve Osborn: The Midwife’s Tale Oral History Collection

The second extract from The Midwife’s Tale Oral History Collection is taken from an interview with midwife Eve Osborn, recorded in 1986. In this extract Eve describes her experiences working as a midwife on the district in Bexleyheath, in the London Borough of Bexley, during the Second World War . Interview reference: RCMS/251/8 Transcript: Interviewer:…

Nursing Notes & Midwives’ Chronicle, December 1947: Home for Christmas

This month’s feature is brought to you by the December 1947 issue of Midwives’ Chronicle and Nursing Notes and by the themes of home and Christmas. It covers the growing popularity of hospital births during the mid-twentieth century, the role of domiciliary midwives in home births, and recipes for making a memorable Christmas dinner. The…

Nursing Notes & Midwives’ Chronicle, July 1908

This month’s post is taken from the July 1908 issue of Nursing Notes & Midwives’ Chronicle, and has a very strong Suffragette theme. ‘About twenty members started with the Treasurer from the Club to join the Suffrage Procession on the Embankment. We had a most delightful time and think it was a great pity that…

Midwives Chronicle & Nursing Notes: April 1969

This month’s post comes from the April 1969 issue of Midwives Chronicle and is very much about new beginnings. Most striking is the evidence of new maternity units and hospitals being opened throughout the UK at this time. Advertisements for staff and health professionals lie alongside articles on a new unit at Lincoln and the…