Papers of Lydia Ida Huber Torrance Allen, 1894-1986, physician and medical graduate, University of Glasgow, Scotland

Scope and Content

  • Savings bank passbook 1911-1915;
  • Various letters 1913-1923;
  • Degree and professional certificates 1913-1940;
  • Woman student's perpetual ticket for ward admittance 1915-1918;
  • Identity cards and registration cards 1915, 1918,and c1945;
  • Newspaper cutting of University of Glasgow Medicine degree passes 1918;
  • Testimonials 1918-1926;
  • Photograph of Dr Torrance Allen 1926;
  • Photocopy of obituaries of Dr Torrance Allen 1986.

Administrative / Biographical History

Lydia Ida Huber Torrance Allen was born on 26 April 1894  in Tiberias, Israel where her father, a physician, had established a missionary hospital. She was educated in Scotland and Beirut, and began studying Medicine at the University of Glasgow, Scotland in 1913  . At University she studied Zoology, Chemistry, Anatomy, Physiology, Materia Medica, Pathology, Medicine, Surgery, Midwifery, and Sick Children. She graduated MB ChB in 1918  and gained her MD in 1923  , both degrees were awarded with commendation. Her doctoral thesis was entitled The normal electrical excitability of the peripheral nerves in infancy and early childhood . Dr Allen worked in paediatrics and obstetrics in Glasgow; Manchester, England; Nottingham, England; and Birmingham, England from 1918-1923  . She then worked abroad, firstly at her father's hospital in Tiberias, for a short time in Colombo, Sri Lanka, and then in India as an obstetrician in the Women's Medical Division from 1928-1941  . After resigning from government service she continued to practice in Calcutta until 1950  when she returned to England. She worked as a consultant to the Woolwich group of hospitals for a further 10 years before retiring. Her husband Major Arthur J L Allen, Royal Indian Army Service Corps (RIASC) died in 1941  . Dr Allen was awarded the Kaisir I Hind Gold Medal (KIH) by King George VI, was a Fellow of the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists (FRCOG) and a longstanding member of the Medical Woman's Federation. She spoke German, Italian, French, Yiddish, Arabic and Hindustani. Dr Allen died on 06 May 1986  .

Source: Obituaries from the Medical Women's Federation Bulletin, and the British Medical Journal 1986.


The arrangement of this material reflects the original order in which it was received

Access Information


Acquisition Information

Deposit: National Archives of Scotland: December 1986

Other Finding Aids

Digital file level list available in searchroom

Alternative Form Available

No known copies

Conditions Governing Use

Applications for permission to quote should be sent to the Archivist.

Reproduction subject to usual conditions: educational use and condition of documents.

Appraisal Information

This material has been appraised in line with standard GB 0248 procedures

Custodial History

Held by the National Archives of Scotland (previously the Scottish Record Office) until 1986


None expected

Related Material

No related material

Location of Originals

This material is original


No known publications using this material

Additional Information

Fonds level description created by Andrew Thomson, Hub Project Archivist, 03 March 2005. Lower level descriptions compiled by Vikki Laidlaw, Hub Project Assistant, 03 March 2005. Catalogue edited by Michelle Kaye, Archives Assistant, 13 July 2012.

Geographical Names