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Guttmann, Sir Ludwig (1899-1980)

Identity Statement

Reference code(s): GB 0120 PP/GUT
Held at: Wellcome Library
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Full title: Guttmann, Sir Ludwig (1899-1980)
Date(s): 1914-1981
Level of description: Collection (fonds)
Extent: 7 boxes, 1 large box, 1 oversize item
Name of creator(s): Guttmann | Sir | Ludwig | 1899-1980 | Knight | neurologist
Detailed catalogue: Click here to view repository detailed catalogue


Administrative/Biographical history:

Born, 1899; worked as medical orderly in the accident hospital at Konigshütte, 1917-1918; Studied medicine in Breslau, Würzburg and Freiburg; MD Freiburg, and began working with neurologist Professor Otfrid Foerster in Breslau, 1924; went to Hamburg to run a neurosurgical service in a municipal psychiatric hospital, 1928; returned to Breslau as Foerster's first assistant, 1929; Privatdozent, 1930; became neurologist and neurosurgeon to the Jewish hospital in Breslau, 1933; medical director of the Jewish hospital in Breslau, 1937; Witnessed the Kristalnacht, and was able to save a number of individuals by admitting them to the hospital, 1938; he and his family granted visas to go to England; invited to Oxford; started work in the Nuffield department of neurosurgery in the Radcliffe Infirmary under Hugh Cairns, 1939; invited to start a centre for paraplegics in the Emergency Medical Service Hospital at Stoke Mandeville, 1943; Centre opened and became an internationally renowned institution which revolutionised the treatment and management of paraplegia, 1944; Inception of sports programme at Stoke Mandeville, 1947; died, 1980.


Scope and content/abstract:

Papers of Sir Ludwig Guttmann covering most of his career, although there is relatively little on the earlier years in Germany before he emigrated with his family to the UK in 1939. There is some personal and biographical material, and a typescript autobiography. There are a number of items relating to Stoke Mandeville Hospital and its work in the rehabilitation of paraplegics, which Sir Ludwig pioneered. There is also some material, mostly photographs, relating to the International Paralympics which developed from his initiatives at Stoke Mandeville.

Access & Use

Language/scripts of material:

System of arrangement:

Arranged in sections as follows:
A. Personal and biographical
B. Stoke Mandeville
C. International Sports for the Disabled

Conditions governing access:


Conditions governing reproduction:

Photocopies/photographs/microfilm are supplied for private research only at the Archivist's discretion. Please note that material may be unsuitable for copying on conservation grounds, and that photographs cannot be photocopied in any circumstances. Readers are restricted to 100 photocopies in twelve months. Researchers who wish to publish material must seek copyright permission from the copyright owner.

Finding aids:

Archival Information

Archival history:

Immediate source of acquisition:

Given to the Wellcome Library in February 2004 by Guttmann's son Dr Dennis Guttmann.

Allied Materials

Related material:

Correspondence with Sir Ernst Chain PP/EBC.

Records of Stoke Mandeville Hospital are held in the Centre for Buckinghamshire Studies, County Hall, Walton Street, Aylesbury HP20 1UU England Website:

Publication note:

Description Notes

Archivist's note:
Copied from the Wellcome Library catalogue by Sarah Drewery.

Rules or conventions:
In compliance with ISAD (G): General International Standard Archival Description - 2nd Edition (1999); UNESCO Thesaurus, December 2001; National Council on Archives Rules for the Construction of Personal, Place and Corporate Names, 1997.

Date(s) of descriptions:
Jan 2009

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