medicine STEM womens rights womens suffrage

Sophia Jex-Blake

Sophia Jex-Blake was an English physician and feminist who led the Edinburgh Seven, the first women to matriculate at a British university. Jex-Blake was dissuaded from pursing an education by her parents, who did not believe that women were entitled to equal education. She eventually managed to attend Queen’s College, where she impressed the faculty …

medicine STEM

Hilda Leyel

Hilda Leyel (also known as Mrs C F Leyel) was an expert on herbalism and founded the Society of Herbalists (now known as the Herb Society) Leyel developed a love of herbs and flowers at a young age, and after completing her education at Uppingham School went on to study medicine. She developed an interest in herbalism, studying …

black history medicine

Mary Eliza Mahoney

Mary Eliza Mahoney was the first black professional nurse in the U.S. She co-founded the National Association of Colored Graduate Nurses (NACGN), which worked to eliminate racial discrimination within the registered nursing profession. Mahoney was born in 1845 in Boston, Massachusetts. Her parents were freed slaves, who had moved north from Carolina before the Civil …

black history business medicine philanthropist

Bridget “Biddy” Mason

Bridget “Biddy” Mason was an African-American nurse, real estate entrepreneur and philanthropist. She was able to support her extended family for generations due to her financial success. Mason was born into slavery in 1818 in Mississippi. She was named Bridget and given no last name. Mason was owned by slaveholders in Georgia and South Carolina …

medicine STEM

Justina Ford

Dr. Justina Ford was an American physician who become the first female African American physician licensed to practice in Denver, Colorado, challenging and overcoming gender and racial barriers to succeed in her medical career. She practiced gynaecology, obstetrics, and paediatrics from her home for half a century. Ford was born in 1871 in Knoxville, Illinois. …

black history medicine

Mary Seacole

Mary Seacole was a Jamaican-born nurse who helped soldiers during the Crimean War by setting up a “British Hotel” behind the lines for sick and convalescent officers. She was posthumously awarded the Jamaican Order of Merit in 1991. Seacole was born Mary Grant in 1805 in Kingston, Jamaica. She was of Scottish and Creole descent …