Optometry: not a new profession for a woman

Catalogue Number: 3462
Optometry: not a new profession for a woman
Category: Papers
Sub-Category: Biographical notes, obituary
Author: WEBBER Ann
Year Of Publication/Manufacture: c 1995
Time Period: 1940 to 1999
Place Of Publication/Manufacture: Brisbane
Publisher/Manufacturer: Unpublished
Description Of Item: Biographical notes about women optometrists especially for Miss Ella Lillian May Pink (1890-1986) (pictured) a woman optometrist who qualified in optometry in London in 1915 and practised optometry in Australia from 1917, 5 pages of A4 typescript, undated and without author attribution, but known to be authored by Dr Ann Webber.
Historical Significance: These biographical notes were made for a lecture to a Rotary Club and reflect on the emergence of women optometrists from the early decades of the 20th century to the 1980s when women optometrists began to become more common. The notes have their origin in the author taking possession of materials belonging to Miss Ella Pink (and now held in the Kett Optometry Museum). Ella Pink was one of very few women optometrists when she commenced practice in Australia in 1917. She qualified in optometry in London in 1915 by passing the examinations for Fellowship of the Worshipful Company of Spectacle Makers, a London guild that was founded in 1629 and also obtained the Dioptric Diploma of the British Optical Association (DBOA) by examination. Passing these examinations entitled her to the postnominals DBOA and FSMC. Fellowship of the Worshipful Company of Spectacle Makers also qualified her for admission to the Freedom of the City of London. She is almost certainly the first Australian woman optometrist to obtain these qualifications.The biographical notes draw heavily on newspaper articles (from about 1917) reporting verbatim interviews with Miss Pink and also reflect on the author's own experiences as a woman optometrist in the 1980s when women optometrists were still relatively uncommon. Picture is of Ella Pink.The author Dr Ann Webber qualified in optometry with honours at the Queensland Institute of Technology in 1984 and later in 2009 attained a PhD degree. She is now a part time member of the academic staff of the Queensland University of Technology and is also in private and hospital practice
How Acquired: Donated by Noel Dawson (Estate of Ella Pink)
Date Acquired: Jan 2018
Condition: Good
Location: Archive office. Pamphlet and ephemera filing cabinet. Drawer 8

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