The Stethoscope Sorority: Stories from the Archives for Women in Medicine



Over the years, women have faced, and continue to face, many struggles in the field of medicine. Despite this ongoing adversity, they have emerged as strong leaders and helped revolutionize the profession. The Archives for Women in Medicine (AWM) at the Countway Library was created in 2000 to capture and preserve the untold history of the many women who have helped change the face of medicine in the United States. This exhibition highlights materials from the AWM that illustrate women’s experiences as mentors, pioneering researchers, healers, and strong voices speaking out for their beliefs. Using their own words, the exhibition presents stories from some of the women of the AWM and the people who have helped contribute to their successes.

As you go through the exhibition, listen to their stories. Consider how the field of medicine has advanced as a result of these women. How have these changes affected your life as a physician, scientist, patient, or future medical professional? What does the future hold for women in medicine?

The documents and images in this exhibit are from various collections of the Archives for Women in Medicine.


This is the online version of an exhibit at the Countway Library of Medicine from March to September, 2006. The exhibit was curated by Lesley Schoenfeld.



Strong Voices

"Strong Voices" presents women who spoke out about aspects of medicine that were greatly affected by their gender, such as equality in education and equal access to healthcare.


"Pioneers" describes how some of the earliest women in medicine not only paved the way for others, but also contributed to the advancement of the field and helped to expand women's rights.


"Mentors" discusses how these counseling relationships fostered personal and professional development for women in the field of medicine.