On June 20 or 24, 1908, 36-year-old Lillie O'Neill died in Dr. Albert C. Davis's Chicago office from complications of an abortion performed June 20. Davis was acquitted for reasons not given in the source document. A midwife named Cornelia Meyers was arrested, tried, convicted, and sentenced to Joliet.
Lillie's abortion was typical in that it was involved medical professionals, including a physician.
"Annie" traveled from New Jersey to New York to avail herself of the new law for a first-trimester abortion on June 24, 1971. Shortly after she was given anesthesia, Annie went into cardiac arrest, and attempts to revive her failed. She left behind three children.
We can see that starting in the 1940s, while abortion was still illegal,
there was a massive drop in maternal mortality from abortion. The death
toll fell from 1,407 in 1940, to 744 in 1945, to 263 in 1950. Most
researches attribute this plunge to the development of blood transfusion
techniques and the introduction of antibiotics. And as you can see from
the graph below, the fall in abortion deaths was in place long before
legalization. Legalization did nothing to change the number of deaths
each year; the trend had been in place for decades. Learn more here.