Pioneer Work in Opening the Medical Profession to Women by Elizabeth Blackwell

Dr. Elizabeth Blackwell’s memoir, Pioneer Work in Opening the Medical Profession to Women, describes in delicious detail her adventures and misadventures as she sought to become the first American women to be admitted to medical school and then establish a medical practice. Many passages are taken directly from her own diaries and letters.

Her memoir also provides glimpses of her famous siblings and in-laws: her brother Henry B. Blackwell, a suffragist who married suffragist Lucy Stone; Emily Blackwell, who followed Elizabeth into medicine and helped her establish a hospital; and sister-in-law Antoinette Brown Blackwell, the first ordained female minister in a mainstream Protestant denomination.

***We think everyone should read the Ask a Suffragist book series, but the first book in the series, America’s First Feminists, will not be available in bookstores until Spring 2019.  In the meantime, we’re sharing recommendations of our other favorite memoirs, biographies, history books and fiction by or about suffragists to get you in the mood for the upcoming 100th anniversary of the Nineteenth Amendment. Happy reading! Celebrate with us! Sign up for the Centennial Celebration Email List to get social media shareables honoring women in history and to be the first to know when new Ask a Suffragist books are available.

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April Young Bennett

April Young Bennett is the author of the Ask a Suffragist book series, host of the Religious Feminism Podcast and a writer for the Exponent II. For more information about April, see

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Pioneer Work in Opening the Medical Profession to Women by Elizabeth Blackwell