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The John McLean Archive

​​​​​The John McLean archive​​ project



The British Dental Association Museum is working with King’s College London Dental Institute to establish and maintain the 'John McLean Archive: a living history of dentistry'. 

The archive was established in memory of the leading dental practitioner and internationally renowned dental materials scientist, author and lecturer John McLean. 

Aim of the project

The project aims to document the history of dentistry since the start of the National Health Service. The project gathers reminiscences through a series of witness seminars and individual oral history interviews. 

Topics covered include: 

  • ​the start of the NHS and the rise of private dentistry

  • dental education

  • dental contracts 

  • and other significant events and changes.

Witness seminars

Five witness seminars have been held on a series of topics covering dentistry from the establishment of the NHS in 1948. The seminars involved experts in their field gathering together to discuss their reminiscences and share their knowledge. The discussions have been recorded and the edited transcripts are available to view on this site.

Oral history interviews

Individual oral history interviews have been recorded with prominent individuals from the dental profession as well as dentists and dental care professionals. Selected audio clips and corresponding transcriptions are available.