History of Medicine
This is an online version of an exhibit held at the National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, Md., Jan. 23-Sept. 4, 1999
Elizabeth Blackwell, aged 38.
Pencil drawing by Comptesse de Charnacee
Glasgow University Archives
On the morning of Tuesday, January 23, 1849, a young woman ascended the platform of the Presbyterian church in Geneva, N.Y., and received from the hands of the President of Geneva Medical College a diploma conferring upon her the degree of Doctor of Medicine. Thus, after many years of determined effort, Elizabeth Blackwell became the first woman to complete a course of study at a medical college and receive the M.D. degree.