Capturing Cambridge
  • search
  • Facebook
  • Twitter

18 Portugal Street, Harper House

History of 18 Portugal Street


Miss C Lett



Irene Marguerite Keane, wife of Hugo Alfred Harper. Hugo died in 1918.

Hugo served as a 2nd Lt. with the Seaforth Highlanders and was killed at Bethune in France on 15th April 1918.


1919: Irene set up the Harper House library. It came to have the largest Empire Library after that of the Royal Empire Society.

She complete a BA at Cambridge in 1925 and an MA in 1928 with a thesis on the history of Fort Edmonton 1835-1905.

From 1936 she organised annual Cambridge Empire conferences.



Irene M Harper, b 1896, university lecturer (Ministry of Labour Registry Professional Services)

Hugo D H Harper, b 1918, university student



Victor W Dunn


Do you have any information about the people or places in this article? If so, then please let us know using the Contact page or by emailing