Cam, Helen M. (Helen Maud), 1885-1968

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Cam was a medieval historian, the first woman professor on the Faculty of Arts and Sciences at Harvard University, and a professor at Cambridge University in England, where she was active in local politics.

From the description of Papers, 1928-1969 (inclusive). (Harvard University). WorldCat record id: 232006945

Cam was a medieval historian, the first woman professor on the Faculty of arts and Sciences at Harvard University, and a professor at Cambridge University in England, where she was active in local politics.

From the description of Helen Maud Cam collection of English autographs, 1867-1927. (Harvard University). WorldCat record id: 612753300

From the guide to the Helen Maud Cam collection of English autographs, 1867-1927 and undated., (Houghton Library, Harvard College Library, Harvard University)

1909-1912 teacher at Cheltenham Ladies' College; 1912-1919 assistant lecturer at Royal Holloway College; 1919-1921 staff lecturer at Royal Holloway College; 1921-1926 Pfeiffer research fellow at Girton College, Cambridge; late 1920s fellow and lecturer in history for Girton College; 1929-1948 lecturer in history at Cambridge University; 1944-1948 vice-mistress of Girton College; 1945 elected to British Academy; 1948-1954 Zemurray Radcliffe professor at Harvard; 1949-1960 president of the International Commission for the History of Representative and Parliamentary Institutions; 1957 CBE

Epithet: historian

British Library Archives and Manuscripts Catalogue : Person : Description : ark:/81055/vdc_100000001394.0x000352

Helen Maud Cam [HMC] was born on 22 August 1885 in Abingdon, the fourth of nine children of the Reverend William Herbert and Kate Cam. The family moved to Birchanger in Essex in 1893. Educated at home, HMC then studied history at Royal Holloway College in London from 1904-1907. A fellowship in history at Bryn Mawr College, Pennsylvania, from 1908-9, was followed by three years teaching at Cheltenham Ladies' College. She returned to Royal Holloway College as a lecturer in 1912 and remained there for 10 years. It was during this period that she began research on local government in the 13thC, publishing Studies in the Hundred Rolls: Some Aspects of Thirteenth-Century Administration in 1921.

In 1921, HMC was offered the Pfeiffer Research Fellowship by Girton College, Cambridge, in order to continue her research into the Hundred Rolls. She was recognised from the mid-1920s onwards as a leading authority on medieval local government. She published The Hundred and The Hundred Rolls in 1930. After this there were very few further full-length books but her output of articles and papers was prolific.

HMC remained at Girton until 1948, undertaking both teaching and research. She became, in 1937, the first woman to gain the title of the Cambridge LittD. She supported numerous projects, including Romsey Town Labour Club in Cambridge and Hillcroft College for Working Women in Surbiton. A sabbatical year from Cambridge in 1936-37 took her as far afield as India. She was elected a Fellow of the British Academy in 1945.

HMC was appointed to the Zemurray Radcliffe chair of history at Harvard University in 1948, thus becoming Harvard's first female professor. On her retirement in 1954, she set up home with her sister Norah in Sevenoaks, Kent. Much of her time in 'retirement' was spent on work for the International Commission for the History of Representative and Parliamentary Institutions, of which she had become President in 1949.

Outside academic history, HMC enjoyed literature of a wide variety, including detective fiction. She published a pamphlet entitled 'Historical Novels' in 1961, the result of a lifelong fascination with the genre. The study of law also occupied much of her retirement years, giving her the opportunity to 'justify a long-standing devotion'. In particular, she edited for the Selden Society the records of the London Eyre of 1321.

Helen Cam died in Kent in February 1968.

From the guide to the Personal Papers of Helen Maud Cam, circa 1895-1995, (Girton College Library, University of Cambridge)

Archival Resources
Role Title Holding Repository
creatorOf Helen Maud Cam collection of English autographs, 1867-1927 and undated. Houghton Library.
referencedIn Arthur Stanley Riggs Papers, 1929-1952, (bulk 1949-1951) Library of Congress. Manuscript Division
referencedIn Comstock, Ada Louise. Papers, 1818-1982 (inclusive), 1887-1982 (bulk). Harvard University, Schlesinger Library
referencedIn Papers, 1920-1995. Houghton Library.
referencedIn Records of Radcliffe Chapter of Phi Beta Kappa, 1907-1995 Radcliffe College Archives, Schlesinger Library, Radcliffe Institute
creatorOf Personal Papers of Helen Maud Cam, circa 1895-1995 Girton College Library, University of Cambridge
creatorOf Cam, Helen M. (Helen Maud), 1885-1968. Papers, 1928-1969 (inclusive). Harvard University, Schlesinger Library
referencedIn Harvard University Archives Photograph Collection: Portraits, ca. 1852-ca. 2004 Harvard University Archives.
referencedIn Cronkhite, Bernice Brown, 1893-. Transcript of oral history, 1976. Harvard University, Schlesinger Library
referencedIn Phi Beta Kappa. Massachusetts Iota (Radcliffe College). Records of Radcliffe Chapter of Phi Beta Kappa, 1907-1995 (inclusive). Harvard University, Schlesinger Library
referencedIn Radcliffe College Archives biography files, 1855-2007 Radcliffe College Archives, Schlesinger Library, Radcliffe Institute
referencedIn Records of the President of Radcliffe College, 1960-1972 Radcliffe College Archives, Schlesinger Library, Radcliffe Institute
referencedIn Riggs, Arthur Stanley, 1879-1952. Arthur Stanley Riggs papers, 1929-1952 (bulk 1949-1951). Library of Congress
creatorOf Cam, Helen Maud, 1885-1968,. Helen Maud Cam collection of English autographs, 1867-1927. Harvard University, Houghton Library
referencedIn Alger family. Papers, 1809-1984 (inclusive). Harvard University, Schlesinger Library
referencedIn Kitchelt, Florence Ledyard Cross, 1874-1961. Papers, 1885-1961 (inclusive). Harvard University, Schlesinger Library
referencedIn Jordan, W. K. (Wilbur Kitchener), 1902-. Records of the President of Radcliffe College, 1943-1960 (inclusive). Harvard University, Schlesinger Library
referencedIn Archives of the London Committee of the Missionary Settlement for University Women relating to provision of hostel accommodation for Indian women students in Bombay 1893-1990, 1893-1990 British Library
Role Title Holding Repository
Relation Name
associatedWith Ainsworth, William Harrison, 1805-1882 person
associatedWith Albert Mansbridge person
associatedWith Alger family. family
associatedWith Barker, Alfred. person
associatedWith Belloc, Hilaire, 1870-1953 person
associatedWith Bourchier, Arthur, 1836-1927 person
associatedWith Bright, John. person
associatedWith Brown, Arthur Whitten, Sir, 1886-1948 person
associatedWith Bunting, Mary Ingraham, 1910- person
associatedWith Clodd, Edward, 1840-1930 person
associatedWith Cobden, Richard, 1804-1865 person
associatedWith Comstock, Ada Louise. person
associatedWith Cronkhite, Bernice Brown, 1893- person
associatedWith Emily H. Smith person
associatedWith Fletcher, W. L. person
associatedWith George, David Lloyd, 1863-1945 person
associatedWith Harvard University corporateBody
associatedWith Harvey, Martin. person
associatedWith Housman, Laurence, 1865-1959 person
associatedWith Jerome, Jerome K. (Jerome Klapka), 1859-1927 person
associatedWith J. L. Paton person
associatedWith Jordan, W. K. (Wilbur Kitchener), 1902- person
associatedWith Kitchelt, Florence Ledyard Cross, 1874-1961. person
associatedWith Lang, Andrew, 1844-1912 person
associatedWith Levin, Harry, 1912-1994 person
associatedWith Loreburn, Robert T. Reid (Robert Threshie Reig), Earl, 1846-1923 person
associatedWith MacDonald, J. Ramsay (James Ramsay), 1866-1937 person
associatedWith Martineau, Gertrude person
associatedWith Meyer, Max. person
associatedWith Miss Paton person
associatedWith Mrs. Paton person
associatedWith Phi Beta Kappa. Massachusetts Iota (Radcliffe College) corporateBody
associatedWith Phi Beta Kappa. Massachusetts Iota (Radcliffe College) corporateBody
correspondedWith Riggs, Arthur Stanley, 1879-1952. person
associatedWith Robertson, F. W., Rev. person
associatedWith Scott, Robert Falcon, 1868-1912 person
associatedWith Smith, Emily H., person
associatedWith Smuts, Jan Christiaan, 1870-1950 person
associatedWith Stowe, Calvin E. person
associatedWith Stowe, Harriet Beecher, 1811-1896 person
associatedWith University of Cambridge corporateBody
associatedWith Wardlaw, Ralph. person
associatedWith Wells, . person
Place Name Admin Code Country
England
India, Asia
Gholvad, Bombay
Poona, India
Bombay, India
Subject
Medieval history,
Women
Women--Political activity
Education, higher
Women in education
History education
Autographs--Collections
Law
Occupation
College teachers
Historians
Collector
Function

Person

Birth 1885-08-22

Death 1968-02-09

Britons

English

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