E. Neige Todhunter, PhD


Elizabeth Neige Todhunter

Elizabeth Neige Todhunter (1901-1991) was a nutritionist, teacher, author, and lecturer. Her biographical and historical writings and lectures greatly promoted interest in history of nutrition science.

Elizabeth Neige Todhunter was born on a dairy farm near Christchurch, New Zealand in 1901. She attended the Christchurch Technical High School and received the B.Sc. and M.Sc. from the University of Otago, located in Dunedin, New Zealand. At Otago, Neige played on the girl's basketball team and was a star debater. In 1924, she was the first woman chosen to represent her University in a debate with visiting students from Oxford and Cambridge. The topic debated was "That Woman Has More Than come Into Her Own." It was reported by the local press that "Miss Todhunter won the debate for Otago with wit and eloquence."*

After receiving her masters degree, Neige taught in the Home Science Department at Otago for several years. In 1928 she left New Zealand to attend Columbia University in New York. At Columbia, Neige was a student of Professor Henry S. Sherman and received a Ph.D. in nutrition in 1933. Dr. Todhunter taught at Washington State University and at the University of Alabama, where she was Dean of Home Economics for many years. When she retired in 1966, she came to Vanderbilt as Visiting Professor of Nutrition. In her retirement she devoted much of her time and energy to the development of the Eskind Biomedical Library's History of Nutrition Collection.

The Eskind Library also has a collection of Elizabeth Neige Todhunter's personal papers. For more information, please consult the .

Elizabeth Neige Todhunter, Technical College Kitchen. University of Otago, New Zealand 1921.

Technical College Kitchen. University of Otago, New Zealand 1921.

*Todhunter Collection. Newspaper Clipping, dated 1924. Vanderbilt Medical Center Archives.