Saturday, April 23, 2016

Two Typical Chicago Abortion Deaths

On Thursday, April 23, 1908, 32-year-old homemaker Annie Johnson was taken by private ambulance to Wesley Hospital in Chicago, suffering form complications of a criminal abortion. She died on Saturday night, April 25.  Albert Stevens, age 39, was arrested as an accomplice to the fatal abortion. Mrs. Laura R. Flinn, one of Annie's friends, was held as a witness. Laura, who said that the abortion had been performed over her protests, identified midwife Augusta Heiderich as the abortionist. Heiderich was arrested and held by the grand jury.

On April 23, 1920, 30-year-old homemaker Violet McCormick died at the practice of an abortionist named Achtenberg, leaving behind three children.  From information about other Chicago area abortion deaths, we can gather that the abortionist in question was Dr. Louise Achtenberg, who had already been implicated in the abortion deaths of Dora Swan in 1907 and Florence Wright in 1909.  After Violet's death, Achtenberg was held by the coroner and tried, but acquitted, freeing her to cause the 1924 death of Madelyn Anderson.

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