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Dr. Justina Ford

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Courtesy of Denver Public Library
Dr. Justina Ford

Dr. Justina Ford, Denver’s first African American female doctor, delivered seven thousand babies during a career that was anything but easy. When she paid for her medical license in 1902, the examiner said he felt dishonest taking her money as she had two strikes against her: gender and race.

Justina Ford was indeed denied access to Denver hospitals, and all the medical societies turned down her application. So she saw patients in her home in Five Points and made house calls. She treated people of all ethnicities, and learned a few languages to communicate with those who did not speak English.

Dr. Ford treated those who couldn’t pay, and even bought groceries for those going through hard times. It took nearly five decades for the Colorado and Denver Medical Associations to admit Dr. Justina Ford, who continued practicing until just before her death in 1952. Her home now houses the Black American West Museum and Heritage Center.

About Colorado Postcards

Colorado Postcards

Colorado Postcards are snapshots of our colorful state in sound. They give brief insights into our people and places, our flora and fauna, and our past and present, from every corner of Colorado.