Monday, January 21, 2008

On January 21, ...

... 1908 (100 years ago today), the Sullivan Ordinance, a New York City law that forbade women from smoking in public, was passed by the city's aldermen, who voted 73-0 in favor of the ban. A subhead in a New York Times' article on the measure asked:

WILL THE LADIES REBEL
As the Ladies of New Amsterdam Did When Peter Stuyvesant Ordered Them to Wear Broad Flounces?

The "ladies" did indeed "rebel," and so New York's mayor vetoed the measure before 2 weeks had passed.
... 1840, Sophia Jex-Blake (right) was born in Hastings, Sussex, England. After attending Queen's College in London, she studied in the United States, where she was influenced by Dr. Lucy Sewall of Boston and worked as an administrator at the New England Hospital for for Women and Children, which had opened in 1862. On returning home in 1868, she attempted to earn a degree in medicine from the University of Edinburgh. That institution allowed her to sit in on classes but would not grant her a degree. She finally obtained an M.D. in 1877, from the University of Bern, and eventually, a British license to practice medicine. She practiced medicine in Edinburgh, Scotland, until her retirement in 1899. Jex-Blake died in 1912 in Sussex.

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