Lesley and John Brown, who lived in Bristol, were the first couple to successfully conceive using in vitro fertilisation (IVF). Louise Joy Brown was born on 25 July 1978.
The birth was a defining moment for reproductive technology pioneered by British researchers.
Louise’s birth followed ten years of experimentation, hundreds of failed attempts and many setbacks for the scientists responsible for this remarkable achievement.
The Lesley Brown Archive has recently been donated to Bristol Culture. Objects include presents from the Brazilian Embassy, and hate mail from America. A larger collection of documentary material - letters, news cuttings, photographs and film - is held at Bristol Archives (ref. 45827).
Cataloguing and conservation work for this collection was generously supported by the Wellcome Trust [grant 210447/Z/18/Z].