Caroline Still Anderson was one of the first black women to become a physician in the United States in 1878. Anderson was also an educator and activist in her local community. Today, for Black History Month, we celebrate her amazing accomplishments.
Anderson was the first born child to Letitia and William Still on November 1, 1848. Her parents were leaders in the American abolitionist movement and her father led the Philadelphia branch of the Underground Railroad. Anderson finished her primary and secondary education by the age 16, she went on to attend Oberlin College, where she was the only black student in her class.
She earned her Bachelor of Arts degree by age 19 and was elected as the first black president of the Ladies’ Literary Society of Oberlin. Anderson went on to become a teacher of elocution, drawing, and music in Philadelphia.
In 1875 Anderson decided to go back to school. She matriculated at the Howard University College of Medicine. Then, in 1876, she transferred to the Woman’s Medical College of Pennsylvania where she earned her Doctor of Medicine degree in 1878. She went on to open a dispensary and founded a private medical practice.
This groundbreaking pioneer is an amazing example of determination and tenacity. Thank you, Caroline Still Anderson, for leading the way.
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