On December 28, 1921, 30-year-old housekeeper Belle Keehn died at the Chicago Lying-In Hospital from lung abscesses and septicemia caused by an abortion perpetrated by an unknown doctor on or about November 27.
Documents are unclear as to how it was determined that the perpetrator
was a doctor. The hospital was a reputable facility, not a seedy abortion mill, so Belle would have received superior care as doctors
tried to save her life.
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.
For more on pre-legalization abortion, see The Bad Old Days of Abortion