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Dr. Lucille Teasdale - Canadian Woman Surgeon of Courage

Dr. Lucille Teasdale was one of the first women in Quebec to become a surgeon


She spent 35 years in northern Uganda, where she and her husband, Dr. Piero Corti, built one of the most modern and best-equipped hospitals in the region. But the years she spent in Uganda were difficult and dangerous and, ultimately, cost her her life.

Lucille Teasdale was born in the east end of Montréal in 1929, the fourth of seven children. At age 12, some missionary nuns came to her school to speak about their work in a Chinese orphanage. Lucille was fascinated and decided at once to become a doctor.

She studied hard and eventually won a scholarship to enter the Université de Montréal medical school in September 1950. She was one of only eight women in her class of 110 students.

Lucille graduated with top marks. She specialized in surgery and interned at Montréal's children's hospital, Ste-Justine. After five gruelling years, she completed her training and became one of Quebec's first female surgeons.

Dr. Emily Howard Stowe - a Pioneering Canadian Physician

Dr. Emily Howard Stowe was a pioneering Canadian physician and suffragette


She was not only the first Canadian woman to practise medicine in Canada, but she was also a lifelong champion of women's rights. Her tireless campaign to provide women with access to medical schools led to the organization of the women's movement in Canada and to the foundation of a medical college for women.

Emily Howard Jennings was born in 1831 on a farm in Norwich Township in Upper Canada (now Ontario), the first of six daughters of a Methodist father and a Quaker mother.

Emily's mother had been well-educated at an American Quaker seminary and believed in a good education for her daughters. She was so dissatisfied with the local schools that she chose to instruct all her children herself.

At age 15, Emily became a teacher in a one-room schoolhouse in neighbouring Summerville, where she taught for seven years.

Dr. Charlotte W. Ross, Manitoba’s Pioneer Woman Doctor

The life of Dr. Charlotte Ross, Manitoba's first woman doctor who lived and practised in Whitemouth from 1881 to 1910


The dog team was abruptly halted before the log cabin over which the smoke hung low in the frosty night. The driver hurried to the door and upon admittance asked in agitated voice for the doctor. The woman standing by the stove, covering pans of dough, began removing her apron. A young girl hurried to an adjacent room and returned with a large satchel, while another brought her mother's heavy wraps. After giving a few quiet instructions to the girls as she dressed, with the young man carrying the bag, their mother went quickly into the night. Dr. Ross was on her way to assist another young pioneer mother in her travail.

Such occurrences were commonplace in the life of Dr. Charlotte Ross, Manitoba's first woman doctor who lived and practised in Whitemouth from 1881 to 1910. Set on the edge of the Shield country, through which a ribbon of steel was being threaded, Whitemouth, 67 miles east of Winnipeg, was only a construction headquarters when Dr. Ross first joined her husband there. The tiny population consisted only of loggers and railway workers and it was some time before she saw another woman.

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