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Women in Biochemistry: Archival Guide and Bibliography

For the second stage of this project, I compiled a bibliography of relevant secondary literature and a guide to archival sources.

I searched for pertinent archival material on individual authors using Access to Archives and Archives Hub. The information this yielded was highly variable. For prominent figures such as the nutritionist Dame Harriette Chick, complete archival collections and an extensive bibliography could be located. However, relatively little material could be located for even some of the more active authors. My database revealed that the most prolific woman author to the Biochemical Journal between 1906 and 1939 was Katharine Hope Coward, who contributed 42 articles. Little could be found on Hope Coward except for a chapter on her pioneering role in chromatography. Likewise, Marjorie Helen Dennison and Gladys Annie Hartwell, the fourth and fifth most prolific authors with 26 and 25 articles respectively, remain largely opaque figures. In these instances, the database helps remedy the paucity of archival and bibliographic data by collating evidence of publications, collaborators and institutional affiliations.

Much of the remaining archival evidence is fragmentary, consisting of isolated letters, details of a prize or photographs situated in other archival collections. For example, Vera Reader, who authored 17 articles in the Biochemical Journal, appears only in set of photographs taken of UCL staff in 1925, in which Phyllis Kerridge and Katharine Hope Coward also appear (Wellcome Library: SA/PHY/Z/2/3/1-28). The only archival traces I could find for Grace Palmer Eggleton are the reminiscences she provided of her former colleague Sir Charles Arthur Lovatt Evans (Wellcome Library: PP/CLE/A.16: Box 2).

I also took steps to identify other pertinent archival holdings, including those relating to the institutions in which women worked and the societies to which they belonged; this information has been included in the guide to archives.

I have also compiled a bibliography which is intended as an introduction to further reading. This guide is divided into sections on biographical sources, histories of biochemistry and the biochemical society, histories of the departments, institutions and laboratories in which women worked and a few of the key publications on women in science and medicine.

Guide to Archival Sources(PDF Document)

Bibliography(PDF Document)