Midwife's Tale: Ruby Crenin

Scope and Content

Transcript of an interview given by Ruby Crenin of her experiences of childbirth between 1918 and 1932, including attitudes to sex and marriage, hospital conditions, attendance by doctors, nurses and handywomen, abortion, preparations for the baby and delivery at home, social conditions, and breastfeeding.

Administrative / Biographical History

Ruby Crenin was born in Belfast in 1900. Her father was an engineer and her mother a court dressmaker. Ruby married a policeman in 1917 and between 1918 and 1924 she had four children, al born at home.

Conditions Governing Access

Transcripts and Sample Audio: Free to view and download from the website of the Royal College of Midwives: https://www.rcm.org.uk/library-and-information-services

Audio of Full Interviews: Accessible for free and by appointment at the library of the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists.

Opening hours: Monday-Friday, 9am-6pm (contact: archives@rcog.org.uk)

Write, call or email us to book an appointment, make an enquiry, or to order digital copies (free via Dropbox) for personal and non-commercial research.

Conditions Governing Use

Copies for private study purposes only are available from the Archivist (contact: archives@rcog.org.uk). Copyright permission is required for commercial use of audio and transcripts.

Copyright lies with the authors Billie Hunter and Nicky Leap.

Related Material

The Midwife’s Tale: an Oral History from Handywoman to Professional Midwife, by Nicky Leap and Billie Hunter (2nd edition, 2013) [Available at the RCOG library, reference WQ11 LEA]