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Guide to the Louise Hortense Branscomb Papers, 1864-2002 and undated

Abstract

Louise Hortense Branscomb was a physician from Birmingham, Alabama, who was also heavily involved in community work and with the United Methodist Church. Her papers include diaries, medical notebooks, correspondence, and photographs documenting her and her family's activities during the twentieth century.

Descriptive Summary

Collection Number
RL.00145
Title
Louise Hortense Branscomb papers
Date
1864-2002 and undated
Creator
Branscomb, Louise Hortense, 1901-
Extent
7.95 linear feet, 2040 Items
Repository
David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library
Language
English.

Collection Overview

This collection includes Dr. Louise Branscomb's diaries, notebooks, correspondence, photographs, and personal papers relating to her medical career and civic service in Birmingham during the twentieth century. There is also a significant amount of material related to the Branscomb family, including correspondence and clippings from Louise's parents and siblings.

Dr. Branscomb's diaries and notebooks comprise the largest portion of the collection; they are held within the Bound Volumes Series. Her earliest diaries date from age thirteen, and continue off and on throughout her life. Along with personal diaries, Branscomb kept travel diaries documenting her various trips, including her World War II travels, Korea, China, India, Europe, Russia, Africa, and South America. Another notable portion of Volumes Series are Branscomb's medical notebooks, which she used as indices to assist her diagnoses and treatment of various illnesses. She also kept logs of her surgeries and baby deliveries. Along with Branscomb's diaries, the Volumes Series includes diaries and ledgers kept by her father, L.C. Branscomb, and her mother, Minnie Branscomb. L.C. Branscomb's notebooks log his sermons, baptisms, and travels, as well as his personal and family expenses.

The Correspondence Series has been arranged in loose chronological order, with some isolated events foldered separately. This includes courtship letters between Louise Branscomb's parents, L.C. and Minnie, as well as condolences following L.C. Branscomb's accident and death in 1930. The majority of the series are incoming letters to the Branscomb family, with only a small number of letters written by Louise.

The Family History Series is sorted by family member, including materials from Louise's parents, L.C. Branscomb and Minnie McGehee Branscomb, as well as some of her siblings: Harvie Branscomb, Richard Edwin Branscomb, Lamar Branscomb, Alline Branscomb, Emily Branscomb, Elizabeth Branscomb, Lewis Branscomb, as well as other relatives. The series also contains assorted ephemera collected by the family, including Confederate money and news clippings.

Louise Branscomb's Personal Papers Series documents her range of activities, including her travels, her medical practice, her work with the United Methodist Church, and her philanthropy to institutions like Birmingham Southern College. The series includes drafts of her speeches and writings, as well as clippings referencing her and her work. Some clippings collected by Branscomb include her annotations or reflections on the subject or event, often dating from later in her life.

The Photographs Series includes informal snapshots of the Branscomb family and their friends, as well as formal portraits of Louise Branscomb. This series also contains her various identification and membership cards.

Finally, the Oral History Series contains four audio cassettes containing an oral history conducted between September and October of 1985 in Birmingham, Ala., when Martha E. King interviewed Dr. Branscomb on behalf of the Women's Division Oral History Project for the United Methodist Church's General Board of Global Ministries. There is also correspondence, biographical information about Dr. Branscomb, as well as detailed descriptions of and an index for the interview. However, no transcript of the interview is available. Interview topics include family, education, missionary work, women's issues in the church, race relations, and Branscomb's representing the church on her travels to Africa.

Restrictions on Access & Use

A majority of collections are stored off site and must be requested at least 48 business hours in advance for retrieval. Contact Rubenstein Library staff before visiting. Read More »

warning Access Restrictions

Collection is restricted. Permission is required to access manuscript materials and must be requested in advance of a patron's visit by contacting the Rubenstein Library. The manuscript portion of the collection opens for unrestricted use in 2029. Oral history interviews are restricted under a separate gift agreement, and also require permission prior to use.

In addition, all or portions of this collection may be housed off-site in Duke University's Library Service Center. The library may require up to 48 hours to retrieve these materials for research use.

Researchers must register and agree to copyright and privacy laws before using this collection.

Please contact Research Services staff before visiting the David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library to use this collection.

warning Use Restrictions

The copyright interests in this collection have not been transferred to Duke University. For more information, consult the copyright section of the Regulations and Procedures of the David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library.

Contents of the Collection

1. Oral History Interviews, 1985 September-October

Martha E. King interviewed Louise Branscomb on September 13 and 14, and October 7 and 8, 1985, in Birmingham, Alabama. The interviews were part of the Women's Division Oral History Project. It was decided prior to the interviews that the focus would be limited to Branscomb's experiences in the Wesleyan Service Guild, the Women's Division, and the Board of Missions of the United Methodist Church, as it was believed her diaries and papers at Duke would illuminate the rest of her career and life.

The recordings (Acc. 2002-0250) are not transcribed. The interviews may be used only in the Rubenstein Library Reading Room, and may require digitization prior to use. Researchers wishing to cite, or quote from, the recordings must obtain permission. Contact Rubenstein Library staff for further information.

Interview with Louise H. Branscomb, M.D., conducted at Birmingham, AL, September 13-14, 1985, by Martha E. King, 1985 September 13-14
(90.0 minutes)

From interview worksheet:

"Tape 1 side 1. Explanation for filing her diaries which were kept in much detail. This interview is limited to her experinces with Guild, Women's Division and activities in the United Methodist Church. Family information: A church member from age 6, she attended regularly and was active in Epworth League. Account of a special religious experience. Brother Meanss was pastor and its interpretation by a professor later. Active in Sunday School and Missionary Society for children; reference to medical school and subsequent establishing her medical practice; local guild responsibility; difficulty with terminology of Guild, since it could not name a president; importance of Guild in her life. A concern for the timing of the Program Book's release resulted in a personal conference with Lillian Johnson. Soon thereafter Louise was invited to serve on Wesleyan Service Guild Committee and chair Com. on Missionary Education. Her response led to 8 years on Guild Com. and 8 more on Board of Missions. In 1956 the Guild Com. was chaired by a member of Women's Division who was not a Guild member. Effects of meeting at Buck Hill Falls and an interesting attempt to have a simpler style of food service.

Tape 1 side 2. Evaluation of Buck Hill Falls as a meeting place; interesting persons attending; difficulty in being present for full time as a professional person and the impatience the Division had for those who were not. Louise pleaded for meeting to be more convenient for working women to participate. Discussion on what the Black members of the Board preferred to be called. Incident of a roommate who snored and a comment on God-language. Martha's story of a young woman who attended the National Student Convocation. Role of Women's Society and Guild in educating women in race relations. Difficulties in relationships of Guild and WSCS since Guild was considered merely a committee, with limited meeting time; request for a promotion fund for the Guild Com. Guild membership in the Southeast was made up mostly of teachers and secretaries. Louise Branscomb was the only person in leadership trained in medicine and science. Reasons the Guild was attractive to Louise, the role of Lillian Johnson and others. Louise's attempts to organize Guilds in two textile industry towns; lack of understanding of the difference in a night circle and a Guild."

Original audiocassette
Box 1
Audio-cassette RL00145-CS-0001
Audiocassette copy
Box 1
Audio-cassette RL00145-CS-0005
Interview with Louise H. Branscomb, M.D., conducted at Birmingham, AL, Sept. 14 and October 7, 1985, by Martha E. King, 1985 September 14, 1985 October 7
(85.0 minutes)

From interview worksheet:

"Tape 2 Side 1, September 14, 1985 and October 7, 1985. Relationship of parent-child when a Society organized a Guild. Survey used with employed women to determine their needs and goals. Explanation of how Louise went directly from local to Wesleyan Service Guild Committee (National) and resulting resentment that she had not gone 'through channels." The Guild flourished partly because the times were right for women to organize. Of utmost importance to Louise was the cooperation of Guild and Society and, ideally, the the total church, the cooperation of men and women. She feels the Women's Division has been able to keep its identity, largely due to its income. Concern about apartheid in South Africa in 1967 resulted in a proposal to challenge banking practice. Compromise effected -- but 18 years later this is still an issue. Tension between Women's Society and Guild but the reason it worked was that church women made it work. Example of tension is shown in the history of North Alabama women which devotes only 2 of the 127 pages to the guild. Values of service on the Board of Missions to Louise. Her attempt to place two Guild members on the Board was defeated. Louise was named to represent the Board at the Geneva Conference on 'The Future of Man in a World of Science-Based Technology.' Scientists, theologians and public servants attended and the scientists seemed to be the authority. Only three women were in attendance among the one hundred persons participating.

Tape 2, Side 2, October 7, 1985. Conference had simulataneous translation. Her experience with Harvey Cox and participation in the communion service. Also, reaction to Margaret Meade. Louise's rebuttal to Dr. Hakm's stance that the women's movement was unnecessary. Dr. Warwick Kern of Sao Paulo spoke frankly on political torture and charged that the oppressors were trained by people from United States and financed by Porte Este. This distressed Louise. It seemed to Louise that the scientists were the particpants who were looking ahead and declaring that science, religion and government need to help each other. Reference to Eric Frohm's "Art of Loving" and Louise's conclusion on its popularity. Louise finds too many areas today which are too highly specialized. Reference to participation recently in a seminar at Vanderbilt University on 'The Professions and Ethics.' She explains that she finds it difficult to share the experience of a conference or seminar with others. Following the Geneva Conference, Louise visited in the home of Bishop Schaefer. An account of dinner with his family and the practice of discussing the events of the day together. She feels that abolishing the office on 'Status of Women' in the Women's Society was a mistake. With the formation of the Commission on the Status and Role of Women the responsibilities were transferred from Society to Commission. The latter had a three-fold function: advocacy, monitoring, and catalyst. Louise feels that the function of education was lost as the Commission did not have a network. She views as very important the joint effort of the Women's Division and the Commission on Status and Role of Women to prepare women for participation in General Conference. Her observation is that the local woman does not understand the work of supportive community as it deals with the 'status and role' function."

Original audiocassette
Box 1
Audio-cassette RL00145-CS-0002
Audiocassette copy
Box 1
Audio-cassette RL00145-CS-0006
Interview with Louise H. Branscomb, M.D., conducted at Birmingham, AL, October 7-8, 1985, by Martha E. King, 1985 October 7-8
(90.0 minutes)

From interview worksheet:

"Tape 3 Side 1, October 7, 1985. Louise was a participant in the Consultation in Africa in 1968, which emphasized Rhodesia. She relates an experience with Mildred Taylor, a missionary, and gives her first-hand observation of the rigid rules on separation of the races. Louise's realization that we think so differently from South Africans. Another missionary, Lorena Kelley, was Louise's rommate at the consultation and she was very helpful. The purpose of the consultation was two fold: (1) to listen to what the African said and (2) to help them understand what the Mission Board is doing and why. Incident she observed of a man's going through the garbage pails and finding only a small bit of banana left in its peel. Bishop Shunga and his district superintendents were present for the consultation. She felt that some of the requests made were unreasonable; e.g. request for a new Toyota to replace on which a district superintendent had driven into a stream and left. Louise felt that Bishop Shunga launched a verbal attack on her when she asked the group to tell her what they wanted. Then, the bishop requested (more nearly ordered) her to lead the devotional the next morning. Relunctantly she agreed and decided to use the topic 'What It Means to Me to Be a Christian.' After the consultation she felt that had not accomplished much but then realized that she had learned a great deal. Staff members were more optimistic of the outcome of the consultation. Reference to Maya Angelou's 'Heart of a Woman,' with emphasis on the 'palaver' over her situation. She concluded that she had failed to recognize the fact that the husband should made the decision rather than the wife. They recommended that she give the husband another chance. The Bishop concluded that the palaver plan called for too much talk and he had decided to do most of the talking himself. October 8, 1985. Louise was elected to the Board in 1964 and found her previous experience valuable. She was intensely interested in finding younger women to serve. Being named to the Board Executive Committee, she found herself in a new situation -- that of interpreting the position of the Women's Division on matters. The men treated her as a peer. She recounts appearing before the Council of Bishops in Nashville to relate the work of the Commission on Status and Role of Women.

Tape 3 Side 2, October 8, 1985. Louise felt good about the presentation and related that when the bishops reconvened they sang 'Rise Up, O Men of God.' She observed that humor is often a signal for the beginning of understanding. She cited Birmingham, Alabama, as a good example of cooperation among its citizens. She referred to the unrest among the Black persons on the Board of Missions and their attempt to speak to the Board. The youth on the Board invited Board members to a caucus and Louise was the only member to respond except the two Board Members assigned to the Youth. Following a confrontation with one of the young women Louise was better able to understand the attitude of the youth. Subsequently Louise was able to get the bishops to hear the youth in the plenary. In 1984 Louise was a delegate to the General Conference; previously she had been an alternate and had attended quite a number of conferences. At the Portland General Conference she gave the minority report on 'Term Episcopacy.' She had assistance especially from Augusta Carruth and Nan Self. Her own conference was very supportive of her as a person, although they did not agree with her report and its position. She believes that the ecumenical movement will bring term episcopacy. She reviewed her report to the Atlanta General Conference on 'abortion' in which she used reference to Albert Schweitzer's philosophy, 'reverence for life.' She stressed the need to consider quality of life for those affected in making the decision. She concludes from this experience 'It's all right to make a fool of yourself for Jesus.' Louise Branscomb has given 28 consecutive years on committees, agencies, commissions and/or Boards of the larger church. During these years she emphasized that women must be brought into the mainstream of both church and society. One group met in Chicago to discuss 'Status of Women' and a petition to the General Conference did set up a Study Committee but a proposal from the floor bo bypass the Study Committee report and go ahead and set up a working commission was made -- it passed. A technique which Louise finds useful is that of pretending she has come to Earth from Mars and she questions if what is being done makes any sense. She repeated her concern that United Methodist Women no longer has a leader to work with Status of Women. Another concern is for clergy women. She made an analogy of her own experience in thinking initially that she had to set up her medical practice in the same manner as did male physicians."

Original audiocassette
Box 1
Audio-cassette RL00145-CS-0003
Audiocassette copy
Box 1
Audio-cassette RL00145-CS-0007
Interview with Louise H. Branscomb, M.D., conducted at Birmingham, AL, October 8, 1985, by Martha E. King, 1985 October 8
(22.0 minutes)

From the interview worksheet:

"Tape 4 Side 1, October 8, 1985. She wants to help clergy women avoid the hierarchy existing among male clergy. Also she has watched with interest the Commission's use of the secretariat style and the use of consensus. Among her learnings are: She has learned 'to trust the process'; she trusts the relationship of the Women's Division and the Status and Role Commission; techniques and experiences have carry-over value into secular activities. There were difficult times in first quadrennium of Commission on Status and Role of Women. She appreciated the statement of Bishop DeWitt as he transferred to another assignment. An important activity was the Convocation for Clergy Women. Louise saw a need for laity to also be trained. A major learning for Louise centered on methods of bringing up a matter in varying arenas. With reference to her stay in India at one of the hospitals, she feels she received more than she could ever give. She explains that being 'Christian' is also being a liberal, with 'liberal' defined as willing to change. In closing she shared an anecdote from one trip to California in which she found a good slacks suit -- in fact, the first one she had ever bought. Bishop Goodson admired the suit and wanted one just like it for his wife."

Original audiocassette
Box 1
Audio-cassette RL00145-CS-0004
Audiocassette copy
Box 1
Audio-cassette RL00145-CS-0008

2. Bound Volumes, 1880s-1990s

Collection is restricted. Permission is required to access manuscript materials and must be requested in advance of a patron's visit by contacting the Rubenstein Library. The manuscript portion of the collection opens for unrestricted use in 2029.

Diary, 1914 May-Oct.
Box 2
Diary, 1914 Oct.-1916 Aug.
Box 2
Diary, 1916
Box 2
Diary, 1916 Dec.-1917 Sept.
Box 2
Diary, 1917 Sept.-1918 Apr.
Box 2
Diary, 1918 Sept.-1920 Aug.
Box 2
World War II Diary, 1944-1945
Box 3
Diary, 1945-1950
Box 3
Diary, 1950 May-1956 Nov.
Box 3
India diary, 1954
Box 3
Diary, 1957 Aug.-1963 July
Box 3
Europe diary, 1958 and 1970
Box 3
Korea diary, 1959
Box 3
Central and South America diary, 1961 Aug.
Box 3
South America diary, 1962 July-Aug.
Box 3
Diary, 1963 Aug.-1966 Dec.
Box 4
Scandinavia diary, 1966 July
Box 4
Diary, 1967
Box 4
Russia diary, 1967
Box 4
Africa diary, 1968 Jan.
Box 4
Bolivia diary, 1969 June
Box 4
Diary, 1972 Feb.-1976 Apr.
Box 5
China diary, 1974
Box 5
Diary, 1976 May-1978 June
Box 5
Diary, 1979 Feb.-1982 Jan.
Box 5
Diary, 1982 Jan.-1984 Mar.
Box 5
Diary, 1984 Mar.-1986 Jan.
Box 6
Diary, 1986 Feb.-1987 Jan.
Box 6
Diary, 1988 Jan.-1989 Nov.
Box 6
Diary, 1989 Feb.-1992 Feb.
Box 7
Korea diary, 1989 Oct.
Box 7
Diary, 1990
Box 7
Diary pages, 1993
Box 7
Diary inserts, 1992-1997
Box 7
L.C. Branscomb diaries, 1880s-1900s
Box 8
L.C. Branscomb ledgers and finances, 1890s-1920s
Box 8
L.C. Branscomb expense ledger for his children, 1914-1921
Box 8
L.C. Branscomb sermons preached, 1900s
Box 8
L.C. Branscomb appointment books, 1904-1905, 1914, 1930
Box 8
Branscomb guestbook, 1900s
Box 8
L.C. Branscomb record of baptisms, 1888-1912
Box 8
L.C. Branscomb travel diaries, 1897, 1927
Box 8
Minnie Branscomb ledgers, 1930s
Box 8
Scrapbooks (2), 1890s-1920s

Untitled, undated scrapbooks with collected clippings and ephemera dating from the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. Includes inserts.

Box 9
Alabama Christian Advocate, 1930 Sept.
Box 9
Diagnoses: notes, symptoms, treatments, undated
(2.0 folders)
Box 10
Diagnoses: notes, symptoms, treatments, 1968
Box 10
Diagnoses and Treatments of Gynecological Conditions, undated
Box 10
Obstetrics Case Book, undated
Box 10
Contagious Diseases, Eastern Fever Hospital, London, 1927
Box 10
Obstetrics: Pelvic Diameters, Miss Dearnley - Operations Rotunda, 1927; Hopkins, 1928
Box 10
Obstetrics/Gynocology, Woman's Hospital, 1928-1929
Box 10
Record of Operations at Franklin Square Hospital, 1930-1931
Box 10
Tropical Medicine, Army Medical Center, Washington, DC, 1944
Box 10

3. Photographs, 1890s-1990s

Collection is restricted. Permission is required to access manuscript materials and must be requested in advance of a patron's visit by contacting the Rubenstein Library. The manuscript portion of the collection opens for unrestricted use in 2029.

First Ramsey Class Banquet, Birmingham, 1909
Box 9
Miscellaneous family portraits and formal photographs, undated
Box 11
United Nations work in Greece, 1945 and undated
Box 11
Scrapbook pages, 1940s-1980s
Box 11
Identification cards and membership cards, 1920s-1990s
Box 11
Portraits of L.H. Branscomb, 1920s-1980s
Box 11
Miscellaneous family snapshots, undated
(3.0 folders)
Box 11

4. Family History, 1860s-1980s

Collection is restricted. Permission is required to access manuscript materials and must be requested in advance of a patron's visit by contacting the Rubenstein Library. The manuscript portion of the collection opens for unrestricted use in 2029.

Alabama Christian Advocate, 1930 Sept.
Box 9
Coin purse, undated
Box 9
Genealogies and obituaries, undated
Box 11
Confederate money and IOUs, 1860s-1900s
Box 11
First United Methodist Church, Birmingham, 1940s-1990s
Box 11
L.C. Branscomb, Southern University, 1884-1886
Box 11
L.C. Branscomb writings, 1890s-1920s
Box 11
Clippings re: L.C. Branscomb, 1920s-1960s
Box 11
L.C. Branscomb memorial book, 1930
Box 11
L.C. Branscomb memorials, 1940s-1950s
Box 11
Flower arrangement cards from L.C. Branscomb's funeral, 1930
Box 11
L.C. Branscomb and Minnie McGehee marriage, 1900 Jun. 5
Box 11
Minne McGehee, Epworth League, 1899
Box 11
Clippings re: Minnie McGehee Branscomb, 1950s and undated
Box 11
Clippings collected by Minnie Branscomb, 1960s and undated
Box 11
Minnie McGehee Branscomb, Children's Home Board of Directors, 1950s-1960s
Box 11
Minnie McGehee Branscomb, Fair Haven Methodist Home for Aging, 1959-1960s
Box 11
Condolences, funeral for Minnie McGehee Branscomb, 1966
Box 11
Lewis Branscomb, 1901-1912
Box 11
Harvie Branscomb, 1920s-1985
Box 11
Alline Branscomb, undated
Box 11
Richard Edwin Branscomb, 1980 and undated
Box 11
Elizabeth Branscomb's baby hair, undated
Box 11
Lamar Branscomb, 1940s-1956
Box 11
Emily Branscomb, 1918 and undated
Box 11
Nannie McAdory Branscomb, 1890s
Box 11
Elizabeth Murrell Branscomb, 1906
Box 11
Mrs. J.L. McGehee, undated
Box 11

5. Correspondence, 1870s-1990s

Collection is restricted. Permission is required to access manuscript materials and must be requested in advance of a patron's visit by contacting the Rubenstein Library. The manuscript portion of the collection opens for unrestricted use in 2029.

Correspondence, 1870s-1890s
Box 13
Correspondence, 1900s
Box 13
Courtship letters from L.C. Branscomb to Minnie McGehee, 1899-1900
Box 13
L.C. Branscomb to Minnie McGehee Branscomb, 1900-1912
Box 13
Correspondence, 1910s
Box 13
Correspondence, 1920s
Box 13
Correspondence, 1930s
Box 13
Correspondence re: L.C. Branscomb's accident and death, 1930 Sept.-Nov.
(2.0 folders)
Box 13
Correspondence, 1940s
(2.0 folders)
Box 13
Correspondence, 1950s
Box 13
Elizabeth Branscomb to Robert M. Cochran, 1955-1956
Box 13
Correspondence, 1960s
Box 13
Correspondence, 1970s
Box 13
Correspondence, 1980s
Box 13
Correspondence, 1990s
Box 13
Correspondence, undated
Box 13

6. Personal Papers, 1901-1999

Collection is restricted. Permission is required to access manuscript materials and must be requested in advance of a patron's visit by contacting the Rubenstein Library. The manuscript portion of the collection opens for unrestricted use in 2029.

Baby book, 1901 and undated
Box 12
UN Relief and Rehabilitation Administration, 1945-1946
Box 12
Huntingdon College, 1950-1993
Box 12
Birmingham medical practice, 1940s and undated
Box 12
Travel to Korea, 1959-1960
Box 12
Travel to Korea, 1989
Box 12
Travel to China: speech notes, article, 1974-1975
Box 12
Speeches: Church-related, 1967-1986
Box 12
Speeches: Laity Day, 1973-1983
Box 12
Speeches: Political/Equal Rights Amendment, 1973-1976
Box 12
Speeches: Medical, 1974-1977
Box 12
Speeches: Miscellaneous, 1970s-1980s
Box 12
Research/medical journal articles, 1948-1960
Box 12
Clippings with published writings, 1947-1986
Box 12
Clippings re: L.H. Branscomb, 1920s-1990s
(7.0 folders)
Box 12
Johns Hopkins reunion, 1978-1979
Box 12
Housing Authority of Birmingham District, 1970s-1980s
Box 12
100 Women in Mission, 1986
Box 12
Wesleyan Service Guild, other Methodist Church ephemera, 1950s-1970s
Box 12
Birmingham Southern College Branscomb Collection, 1980s
Box 12
Birmingham Southern College scholarships, 1990s
Box 12
Notes and dictionary, 1967, 1986
Box 12
Southern Women's Archives, 1979
Box 12
90th Birthday, 1991
Box 12
Research paper re: L.H. Branscomb written by Anne Mitchell, 1990
Box 12
Address books, etc., undated
Box 12
Notes re: travel, trips, etc., undated
Box 12
Sale of house, Birmingham, 1992-1993
Box 12
Kirkwood by the River, 1990s
Box 12
Resume/CV, 1950s-1990s
Box 12
Awards/certificates, 1949-1980s
Box 12
Diplomas and certificates, 1921-1931
Oversize-folder 1
Clippings saved by L.H. Branscomb, undated
Box 12
Vital and legal records (incl. will, Power of Attorney), 1966-1990s
Box 12
Obituaries/funeral/memorials, 1999
Box 12

Historical Note

Louise Branscomb (1901-1999) was a gynecologist and surgeon from Birmingham, Alabama. She attended Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine and opened her own practice in Birmingham in the 1930s. During World War II, she served as a major in the United States Public Health Service, and was stationed with the United Nations Relief and Rehabilitation Agency in Greece from 1944-1945.

Following the war, she continued practicing medicine in Birmingham, and traveled throughout the world working in clinics and hospitals. Branscomb was also very active in the United Methodist Church, including the Methodist Board of Missions and the United Methodist Commission on the Status and Role of Women. She was named as one of one hundred outstanding United Methodist Women in 1986.

Branscomb was born in 1901 to parents Lewis Capers and Minnie McGehee Branscomb, and was one of nine children in the Branscomb family. L.C. Branscomb was a pastor with appointments in several regional churches in and around Birmingham.

Subject Headings

Preferred Citation

[Identification of item], Louise Hortense Branscomb Papers, David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library, Duke University.

Provenance

The Louise Hortense Branscomb Papers were received by the David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library as a gift between 1985 and 2007.

Accession numbers included in this collection: 6-17-85, 1987-0163, 1989-0122, 1990-0045, 1995-0067, 1998-0513, 1999-0335, 2002-0226, 2002-0250, 2007-0169.

Processing Information

Processed by Meghan Lyon, March 2015.

Completed 1987-2003

Encoded by Joshua A. Kaiser

This collection is unprocessed: materials may not have been ordered and described beyond their original condition.