(1868 - 1926)
Gertrude Bell was a prolific writer and inveterate traveler who over the course of her life made two steamship voyages around the world, directed a team of archaeological diggers in Turkey, learned six languages, climbed the Matterhorn, and explored Roman and Byzantine fortresses along the Euphrates. In her native England, she was a founder and president of a chapter of the Women’s National Anti-Suffrage League. After World War I, she served as Britain’s oriental secretary in Iraq after the nation’s creation, and she devoted the last years of her life to the creation of the National Museum in Baghdad. She died there in 1926 after taking a fatal dosage of sleeping pills.