Mississippi Midwives: A Glimpse of Health Care History in the Segregated Community

Title

Mississippi Midwives: A Glimpse of Health Care History in the Segregated Community

Description

These three photos were taken during the summer of 1929 in Indianola and Ruleville, Mississippi. The photos are part of a research project focusing on the role played by African-American midwives in providing pre-natal, obstetrical, post-natal, and general health care in the Mississippi Delta during post-Plessy v Ferguson (1896) era of legally enforced segregation.

We post them here on the Museum of Public Service website not only to draw attention to this page of the US Public Health Service history and to celebrate the dedicated public servants who worked hard to increase access to health care for African-American population in the segregated South, but also in the hope that the website visitors might be able to identify some of the women in the photographs.

What we now know, is that the younger of the two white women in the photos was Ann R. Brown (1903-2001), R.N., a 26 year old native of Scotland who came to the United States in 1923. After graduating from the Henderson (KY) Hospital Nurses' Training School, she briefly held positions at hospitals in Kentucky and Tennessee before going to Sunflower County in the Mississippi Delta in 1929. There, in Ruleville and Indianola, she taught African-American women to be midwives, taught parents basic health and hygiene for their families, and conducted child care clinics for African-American children. Her later medical career was spent in Kentucky. She died in Springfield, Illinois in 2001.

Creator

John Phillips

Date

1929

Source

https://web.archive.org/web/20170708070502im_/http://www.vmps.us/sites/default/files/styles/medium/public/Ruleville%2C%20MS%2C%20%20Midwives%20Club%201929.jpg?itok=STpxnv58

https://www.sj-r.com/storyimage/LS/20130227/NEWS/302279818/AR/0/AR-302279818.jpg?MaxW=600

Relation

Publisher

John Phillips

Contributor

John Phillips

Format

Medium: Photograph

Language

English

Type

Photos

Identifier

Mississippi, African-Americans, Healthcare, Health, Segregation, Racism, Ann R. Brown

Coverage

Historic

Files

mississippimidwives1.png
https://www.sj-r.com/storyimage/LS/20130227/NEWS/302279818/AR/0/AR-302279818.jpg

Reference

John Phillips, Mississippi Midwives: A Glimpse of Health Care History in the Segregated Community, John Phillips, 1929

Cite As

John Phillips, “Mississippi Midwives: A Glimpse of Health Care History in the Segregated Community,” Virtual Museum of Public Service, accessed August 11, 2022, https://vmps.omeka.net/items/show/222.