Tuesday, June 28, 2022

June 28, 1946: Immigrant Dies at Harlem Hospital

According to the New York Index of Death Certificates, 17-year-old Alvena Clarke, a student, died at Harlem Hospital in Manhattan on June 28, 1946. Alvena, an immigrant from Jamaica, suffered a perforated uterus during an abortion and subsequently died of septicemia.

I've been unable to find newspaper coverage of Alvena's death. This might be because she was a young Black woman so her death was not considered important enough to cover in the newspaper. It might be because her abortion was performed legally due to some health problem she had. The fact that the abortion was not identified as criminal in the death records underscores this possibility.

Watch "Scant Information on 1946 Abortion Death" on YouTube.

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