Opening of Girton College at Cambridge

A photo of Girton College at the University of Cambridge

In 1869 the college of Girton at the University of Cambridge was founded by Emily Davies. Girton was the first women's college at Cambridge. Originally, Girton College was located at Hitchin, then shortly after opening moved to Girton where the campus remains today. Just two years later, in 1871, Henry Sidgwick opened a second college and residence for women in Cambridge which relocated to Newnham Hall and became known as Newnham College in 1875. In more recent times, the University of Cambridge opened two more women's colleges. New Hall opened in 1954 and Lucy Cavendish College opened in 1986.

Although Girton paved the way for women at Cambridge, Girton began admitting men into the school in 1977, while Newnham, New Hall and Lucy Cavendish all remain strictly women's colleges. In an article titled "English and American Colleges for Women," published in 1877, the writer talks about how even though Girton was a school at the University of Cambridge the students from Girton did not receive a University degree. In another article titled "Women at the University of Cambridge," it states that women did not receive degrees or full status until 1947. Women's acceptance into college was a step forward in the suffrage movement, giving women the right to attend classes, become more independent and have more job opportunities. When women finally received full status and degree, it became and an even bigger step forward, giving women and men a more equal education.

I received all of my information from articles "Women at the University of Cambridge," and "English and American Colleges for Women." All of the mapsites are women's colleges that I learned about in these articles along with Cambridge itself. 

 

Elaine D. Trehub. "Women at the University of Cambridge." The Victorian Web, November 27, 2016,         www.thevictorianweb.org/history/education/trehub/3.html

"English and American Colleges for Women." New York Times (1857- 1922), Feburary 18, 1877 pp. 6. ProQuest, https://search-proquest-com.ezaccess.libraries.psu.edu/docview/93591529?...

 

Associated Place(s)

Event date:

16 Oct 1869