Previous Treasures Of The Month

2018 is the 10th Anniversary of the first male students arriving at St Hilda's College

 In 2006, St Hilda's Governing Body voted to change the College's statues and admit male students. In Michaelmas Term 2008, a mixed group of Freshers matriculated for the first time in our history.

Our first men's sports teams were established in 2008 and like the women's teams, they have gone from strength to strength. Members of the 2008 cohort remembered that they never did very well in Cuppers but did gain some memorable victories over big colleges. They spoke of their pride on hearing that in 2015 St Hilda's were Cuppers runners up in the 5-a-side football, Cuppers runners up in Men's Hockey and winners of 7s Cuppers in Rugby, which would have been 'unimaginable in our day'. Success continued into 2016 when our mixed Hockey Team won Cuppers and 2018, when St Hilda's won mixed touch rugby Cuppers.

At the start of Michaelmas Term 2018, we are delighted to welcome all our new students to St Hilda's College. Never miss a St Hilda's Treasure of the Month! Follow us on instagram.

The Cherwell 9 June 2006, Matriculation at St Hilda's in 2008, St Hilda's wins Mixed Touch Rugby Cuppers in 2018

Mary Niblett Plaque

To celebrate our 125th anniversary, we have put some of our precious objects on display in the Jacqueline du Pré Building Foyer. This memorial plaque commemorates Mary Nisbett, who was Head Maid at St Hilda's College (then St Hilda's Hall) from 1893 until 1911.

Mary Nisbett plaque

St Hilda's Book Plate

Should you open an early book from our special collections, you will likely find on the inside cover this wonderful bookplate featuring St Hilda of Whitby (614-680) , after whom the College is named. The Annual Report 1925–1926 noted its creation: 

"Mr New has designed a beautiful common seal with a full length figure of St Hilda, a book-plate and a badge for note paper adapted from the seal design, as well as a less elaborate badge for the College blazer." [PUB 001/29]

Artist Edmund Hort New (1871–1931) was a prominent book illustrator and member of The Birmingham Group of Artists which was associated with the Arts and Crafts Movement. 

St Hilda's book plate (1926) by E.H. New

A Snowy South Building in the mid-1920s

This picture shows a calm and frosty winter  view  across the front of South Building in the mid-1920s. In 1919, it got so cold that the water on the surrounding meadows froze over. Student Ethel Collinson wrote in a letter to her mother on the 16th February 1919:

“The frost held for about a week here.  The University Skating Club flooded Long Meadow, and let it freeze, and while it held all the world went skating.  I could not get there until the end of the week.  I spent about an hour one afternoon falling about on Marjorie’s skates.  Then just as I had arranged with Doris Coleman to borrow her skates during the afternoon, as she could not ever use them till after four, of course the thaw came!  She had a gorgeous time that week.  She and her colleagues and their friends, some of them male, used to have moonlight supper parties on the ice!” [PP 13/52]

South Building at St Hilda's in the mid 1920s

'Gambia Studies' by Dr Florence Mahoney

Our alumna Dr Florence Mahoney (nee Asi Peters) was born in Bathurst (Banjul), The Gambia, the daughter of Sierra Leoneon parents. She was educated in The Gambia and then in Derbyshire, England. In 1951, she received her first degree, BA (Hons) in History from Westfield College, University of London, and the Diploma of Education at the Department of Education and St Hilda's College a year later. In 1963, she was awarded a PhD in History from the School Oriental African Studies, University of London.

Dr Mahoney became the first Gambian woman to earn a PhD, and one of the first African women to earn such an advanced degree in History. She has had an extensive teaching career. Dr Mahoney taught History at Gambia High School for a number of years. From 1972-73, she was Fulbright Professor of African History at Spelman College, Atlanta, Georgia, USA.

Dr Mahoney's published books include Stories of Senegambia (1982), The Liberated Slaves and the return to Africa (2001), Creole Saga: The Gambia's Liberated African Community in the Nineteenth Century (2007) and 'Gambian Studies' (2008), a collection of essays on some salient aspects of 19th century Gambian history, which we are proud to count as one of the treasures of our library.

Gambia Studies by Dr Florence Mahoney