Caroline Skeel (1872–1951), graduate from Girton College, joined Westfield College in 1896 as a Visiting Lecturer in Classics, and soon after took sole responsibility for the embryonic History Department. She was also responsible for the College library from 1902, attracting gifts from learned societies and others which substantially improved the collection.
Skeel was promoted in 1919 to a University readership, and she contributed to the success of the Institute of Historical Research.
Characteristically, she viewed her election in 1921 to the overwhelmingly masculine council of the Royal Historical Society as a tribute not to herself but to women scholars in general. In 1929 she took early retirement.
The Skeel archives includes papers relating to Caroline Skeel’s research and teaching at Westfield. To find out more about women's education see the Women at Queen Mary Exhibition.