Rebecca Crumpler

Physician from United States of America

Rebecca Davis Lee Crumpler (February 8,1831 – March 9, 1895) was an American physician. She was the first African American woman to become a physician in the United States. (Rebecca Cole was the second and Susan McKinney Steward the third.) Her publication of A Book of Medical Discourses in 1883 was one of the first by an African American about medicine. When she graduated in 1864, Crumpler was the first African American woman in the United States to earn an M.D. degree, and the only African American woman to graduate from the New England Female Medical College, which merged with Boston University in 1873. Crumpler was born in 1831 and raised by an aunt who spent much of her time caring for infirm neighbors. The aunt likely influenced her choice to go into the medical profession, especially since medical care for the needs of poor blacks was almost non-existent during the antebellum years. In her A Book of Medical Discourses (1883), Crumpler gives a summary of her career path: "It may be well to state here that, having been reared by a kind aunt in Pennsylvania, whose usefulness with the sick was continually sought, I early conceived a liking for, and sought every opportunity to  ( Wikipedia article )


Personal facts

Known as
Dr. Rebecca Crumpler
Date of birth
Place of birth
United States of America


Institution From To
Boston University School of Medicine


Date of death
Place of death
Hyde Park

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