The Extraordinary Gertrude Bell

This is a historic exhibition. It is no longer available to visit and this page is only retained as a record of the previous event. For current and future exhibitions, visit our What's On page.

Discover the talented archaeologist, explorer, mountaineer and government official who helped found modern day Iraq



Until 3 May 2016 (historic exhibition)


Gertrude Bell, who was born at Washington Hall, County Durham, in 1868, led a remarkably full life and was a key figure in drawing up the political map of the Middle East in the early twentieth century. 

She was a talented linguist, archaeologist, explorer, mountaineer and government official and played a major role in the establishment of the state of Iraq, as well as writing Iraq’s first antiquities law and creating the National Museum in Baghdad. 

This new exhibition explores her fascinating story.

Image: Gertrude Bell on horseback, Kubbet Duris  1900, A_340 © Gertrude Bell Archive, Newcastle University

See the Gertrude Bell archive at: