Monday, June 13, 2011

1925: Two doctors, one dead woman

On June 13, 1925, 24-year-old Betty Fisher died in the Chicago office of doctors August Goetz and Henry Gautsen from an abortion performed that day. The doctors were acquitted on October 16. The documents don't indicate why.

Betty's abortion was typical of criminal abortions in that it was attributed to a physician.

Keep in mind that things that things we take for granted, like antibiotics and blood banks, were still in the future. For more about abortion in this era, see Abortion in the 1920s.

During the first two thirds of the 20th Century, while abortion was still illegal, there was a massive drop in maternal mortality, including mortality from abortion. Most researches attribute this plunge to improvements in public health and hygiene, the development of blood transfusion techniques, and the introduction of antibiotics. Learn more here.

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