Susan McKinney-Steward

Dr. Susan McKinney-Steward, PhD

Dr. Susan McKinney-Steward was the third black woman physician in the United States and the first in New York.

She was born in 1847 to a family of farmers in Brooklyn. She started attending New York Medical College for Women in 1867, a few years after the Emancipation Proclamation was issued.

She faced harassment from her male classmates, but stayed strong and received her medical degree in 1870. Dr. McKinney-Steward founded the Women’s Hospital and Dispensary in Brooklyn was a member of the Kings County Medical Society and was the official physician at the Brooklyn Home for Aged Colored People.

Beyond medicine, Dr. McKinney-Steward was passionate about African-American and women’s rights. She was a member of the Equal Suffrage League of Brooklyn and gave a speech called “Colored Women in America” to the first Universal Race Congress.

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