Thursday, 7 March 2013

Farewell to India

After five and a half years I’m hanging up my Digitisation Manager’s hat and saying goodbye to the Medical History of British India.

I’ve had a brilliant time and have been privileged to work with such amazing material and a group of very talented colleagues across the National Library. Special thanks must go to the procurement staff and the Digital Team, plus to Jan Usher who was one of the co-founders of the project.

I’ve been to some great places to talk about the project, including the Wellcome Collection in London and Brisbane, Australia, and have met some wonderful researchers along the way.

Most of all, I have been immersed in a world long gone but preserved in our reports, British India. I have met doctors and patients, pioneers of medicine, witnessed the horror of death and disease and the role of medicine in colonial power. From prostitutes who lived in rum barrels, to bowel gangs and rabid badgers, medical students, veterinarians and lunatics, it has been a colourful experience!

These reports are all still available for free on the website and on April 10th I will be giving a talk called Painful Tales from the Raj at the National Library’s George IV Bridge Building at 6pm.


I’m doing another podcast on the asylums and mental hospitals and will be promoting the vaccination reports which are due online next month.

I have a new post as Digital Projects Officer, still in the NLS, working to bring more of the Library’s collections online.

The Library is applying for more funding to add further reports to the website so this may not be the end of the journey….