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Allan, Robert Marshall (1886 - 1946)

Archival/Heritage SourcesPublished Sources
Obstetrician and Gynaecologist
Born: 24 February 1886  Brisbane, Queensland, Australia.  Died: 29 July 1946  Victoria, Australia.
Robert Marshall Allan was appointed Director of Obstetrical Research, Melbourne in 1925. From 1929-46 he was Professor of Obstetrics at the University of Melbourne and introduced the University's first diploma in obstetrics and gynaecology. Allan was awarded the Military Cross (MC) for his distinguished war service.

Career Highlights
Obtaining medical qualifications from the University of Edinburgh, Robert Allen began to specialize in obstetrics and gynaecology at the Rotunda Hospital in Dublin. In 1914 he was enlisted as a temporary lieutenant in the Royal Army Medical Corps and won the Military Cross for his service in Mesopotamia. He was eventually invalided back to Queensland in 1916, but briefly returned to military service (Australian Imperial Force) again in 1918. Allan came back to Australia towards the end of 1919 and once again specialised in obstetrics and gynaecology in Brisbane hospitals until 1925. A two year post as director of the Obstetrics Research Committee saw Robert Allan move to Melbourne. When the post finished he remained in Melbourne and started up a private practice (1928). Over the next 15 years Allan held many posts including honorary staff member of the Royal Women’s Hospital, honorary obstetrician to the Melbourne District Nursing Society, examiner of the Midwives’ Board, founding Chair in obstetrics at the University of Melbourne, State Director of obstetrics, consultant to the Women’s and Queen Victoria hospitals, central councillor of the Victorian Bush Nursing Association, membership and presidency of several boards and organizations. Allan also travelled widely during this time to increase his knowledge and teach others. He became a foundation fellow of the Royal College of Obstetrics and Gynaecology (FCOG) in London and honorary fellow of the American College of Surgeons (FACS), Fellow of the Royal College of Surgeons, Edinburgh (FRCSE) and Fellow of the Royal Australasian College of Surgeons (FRACS). The University of Melbourne named its top prize in obstetrics after him (Marshall Allan Prize) and the Royal Women’s Hospital named their library in his honour.

1909?Bachelor of Medicine (MB) completed at the University of Edinburgh, Scotland
1910Bachelor of Surgery with Honours (ChB (Hons)) completed at the University of Edinburgh
1911Diploma of Licentiate in midwifery completed at the Rotunda Hospital in Dublin, Ireland
1911 - 1914Assistant Master at Rotunda Hospital in Dublin
1914Doctor of Medicine (MD) conferred in absentia by the University of Edinburgh
1914 - 1916Military service with the Royal Army Medical Corps
1917Medical Superintendent at the Brisbane General Hospital
1918Captain in the Australian Imperial Force
c. 1918Fellow of the Royal College of Surgeons (FRCS)
1919 - 1925Specialist in Obstetrics and Gynaecology in Brisbane
1920Married Maryanne Eleanor Dines at St Augustine's Church in Hamilton
1925 - 1927Director of the Obstetrical Research Committee in Melbourne
c. 1925 - c. 1927Assistant Gynaecologist at Brisbane General Hospital
c. 1925 - c. 1927Honorary Obstetrician at the Lady Bowen Hospital, Brisbane
1928 - Private practice in Melbourne
1929 - 1946Professor of Obstetrics at the University of Melbourne
1937President of the British Medical Association, Victorian branch
1944 - Dean of the Faculty of Medicine at the University of Melbourne
1944Chair of the Federal inquiry into the medical aspects of the decline in the birth rate


Structure based on ISAAR(CPF) - click here for an explanation of the fields.Prepared by: McCarthy, G.J & Annette Alafaci
Created: 20 October 1993
Modified: 29 January 2007

Published by The University of Melbourne eScholarship Research Centre on ASAPWeb, 1994 - 2007
Originally published 1994-1999 by Australian Science Archives Project, 1999-2006 by the Australian Science and Technology Heritage Centre
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Updated: 26 February 2007

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