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Elizabeth Blackwell


Archival Collections

Listed below are finding aids to archival collections that contain primary source materials about or related to Elizabeth Blackwell or the Geneva Medical College. Use these finding aids to discover what documents are available to researchers at various archives.

Digital Collections

The digital collections below contain scans of materials by or about Elizabeth Blackwell. Some of these collections are the digitized materials from the finding aids listed in Archival Collections (above). Use these collections to view digital copies of actual documents held in various archives.

Board of Trustees ledger with list of 1849 Geneva Medical College graduatesGeneva College Board of Trustees meeting minutes ledger, open to the page listing the 1849 graduates of Geneva Medical College. Elizabeth Blackwell is listed first.

Helpful Definitions

archive (n): a physical or digital collection of historical records, organized and preserved because of their continuing value

collection (n): a group of materials with some unifying characteristic; a single collection can contain a variety of materials and material types

finding aid (n): a description of records in an archival collection; finding aids usually include a records inventory and other contextual information about the materials

Why Cite Sources?

Citations are an important aspect of every research paper: 

  • Credit must be given to the original author or creator of a source or it could be considered plagiarism
  • Anyone reading your paper must have the correct information to locate the sources you referenced
  • Using and citing a variety of sources in your paper adds to the credibility of your research by showing that the ideas included are shared or supported by others

Next Steps

A great way to learn more about Elizabeth Blackwell is through her own words and the words of people who knew her. The archival and digital collections listed above contain many such documents, which is why using these types of resources is so important. These collections contain documents such as correspondence to and from Blackwell, photographs of the Blackwell family, and diaries from various Blackwell family members that are priceless when conducting research on the first woman to graduate with a medical degree in the United States. Several of these collections also contain many of the of the publications Elizabeth Blackwell authored throughout her medical career. For a chronological list of works by Elizabeth Blackwell, continue to the next tab in this guide.