Papers relating to the Gynaecological Visiting Society

Scope and Content

Papers relating to Professor Miles Harris Phillips' relationship with the Gynaecological Visiting Society, including records of GVS meetings, photographs, and related correspondence, including interesting papers relating to the appeal by the wife of Hans Hinselmann during his trial for Nazi crimes by the Allied Control Commission.

Administrative / Biographical History

The Gynaecological Visiting Society (GVS) first met on 24th April 1911. It was the inspiration of William Blair-Bell, Assistant Physician at Liverpool Royal Infirmary. Its aims as set out in its first meeting were:

The encouragement and demonstration of scientific research, and the study of methods employed in gynaecological duties.

Two centres to be visited each year in the Spring and Autumn.

A brief record of the meetings to be kept in a book belonging to the Society.

Although other gynaecological societies existed at this time, Blair-Bell felt there was a need for a peripatetic group that could discuss and disseminate information with fellow professionals. The annual visits allowed members to see other hospital departments and view at first hand their colleagues' research activities. With this cross-fertilisation of ideas it was hoped that the appalling statistics of maternal mortality could be tackled.

At a GVS meeting on the 2nd February 1925 several members of the society discussed the founding of a College of Obstetrics and Gynaecology. The College came into existence in 1929, with Blair-Bell as President. The GVS has continued to work closely with the College and today senior officers of the now Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecology are also members of the GVS.

As a Foundation Fellow of the RCOG, Professor Miles Harris Phillips was also a member of the Gynaecological Visiting Society and retained his links with the society beyond retirement, although not as an active member.

For further information see The Gynaecological Visiting Society 1911-1917 by John Peel, Dorset Press, 1992.


This material was originally received into the Archive in envelopes, as collated by Professor Phillips. The original order within envelopes has been retained and a system of arrangement imposed on the files to facilitate access.

Access Information

Open to researchers by appointment, Monday to Friday, 10am to 4pm. mailto:

Other Finding Aids

File level descriptions are available from the College Archivist. mailto:

Physical Characteristics and/or Technical Requirements

Some items are fragile and require careful handling.

Conditions Governing Use

Copyright is vested in the estate of Professor Miles Phillips.

Reproductions are available at the discretion of the College Archivist.

Custodial History

This is a composite series, retaining where possible original order and groupings of papers.

Related Material

Records of the Gynaecological Visiting Society are held in the College Archive [Archive Reference S26]