Pleasant Plains in Washington, District of Columbia — The American Northeast (Mid-Atlantic)
Medical Care for All
“Lift Every Voice”
óGeorgia Ave./Pleasant Plains Heritage Trail ó
During the Civil War (1861-1865), thousands of formerly enslaved people came to Washington in search of new lives. They needed work, education, shelter – and health care. In 1862 the U.S. government responded with Freedmenís Hospital, located at 12th and R Streets, NW.
Less than a decade later, Freedmenís moved near Fifth and W Streets and became Howard Universityís teaching hospital. At a time of strict segregation, Freedmenís, like the university itself, was open to all, offering high-level care and education.
Freedmenís focused on training physicians, but also became a top research institution. Pediatrician Roland Scott pioneered studies on sickle cell anemia, the genetic blood disorder that primarily affects African Americans. Washingtonian Charles R. Drew, who developed life-saving methods for mass blood banking during World War II, headed Freedmenís Surgery Department from 1941 until his death in 1950. From 1908 until 1975, Freedmenís operated in the building across the lawn from this sign, closing when Howard University Hospital opened on Georgia Avenue.
Among the Howard-associated physicians who cared for their community was Ionia Whipper, a graduate who sheltered unwed mothers in her home/clinic nearby at 511 Florida Avenue during the 1940s. Former faculty member Simeon Carson opened a
Just east of here is the edge of what oldtimers called Howardtown, an area of wood-frame houses that grew from a settlement of formerly enslaved people during and after the Civil War. The Kelly Miller Dwellings replaced much of Howardtown in the early 1940s.
A 1930 class of nursing students stood for a Scurlock portrait on Freedmenís Hospitalís front steps, left. Above, a Freedmenís orderly pushes a convalescent. Scurlock Studio Records, Archives Center, National Museum of American History * National Archives and Records Administration.
Dr. Charles R. Drew, left, poses with the Red Crossís first mobile blood-collecting unit during World War II. Scurlock Studio Records, Archives Center, National Museum of American History.
Dr. Roland Scott (wearing eyeglasses) receives an incubator for Freedmenís Hospitalís babies, 1941. Afro-American Newspapers Archives and Research Center.
Howard-associated physicians Ionia Whipper, bottom right, and Simeon L. Carson, right. Below, Carsonís private hospital. Collection of Carole Ione Lewis * Moorland-Spingarn Research Center, Howard University * Moorland-Spingarn Research Center,
A portion of old Howardtown. DC Housing Authority.
Inspectors examine the new V Street Houses, right, also visible as the horseshoe-shaped development near Griffith Stadium, far right. Just south, the Kelly Miller Dwellings are under constructions, 1941. Washingtoniana Division, DC Public Library * DC Housing Authority.
Erected 2011 by Cultural Tourism DC. (Marker Number 6 of 19.)
Location. 38° 55.218′ N, 77° 1.162′ W. Marker is in Pleasant Plains, District of Columbia, in Washington. Marker is on Bryant Street, NW east of 6th Street, NW, on the left when traveling east. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 525 Bryant St., NW, Washington DC 20059, United States of America.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Freedmen's Hospital (about 500 feet away, measured in a direct line); Ed Murphy Way (about 800 feet away); Cleaning Up Cowtown (approx. 0.2 miles away); Howard University (approx. 0.2 miles away); "Strike!" (approx. 0.2 miles away); Centennial Year, Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority (approx. 0.2 Teachers and Preachers (approx. 0.2 miles away); Best in the Country (approx. 0.2 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Pleasant Plains.
Also see . . .
1. Howard University College of Medicine - History. (Submitted on January 18, 2012, by Richard E. Miller of Oxon Hill, Maryland.)
2. C. B. Powell (1894-1977). - physician, publisher, entrepreneur, and benefactor (Submitted on January 18, 2012, by Richard E. Miller of Oxon Hill, Maryland.)
3. Maj. Alexander Thomas Augusta, MC, U.S. Army. - Civil War medical officer, and the only Black physician among the College's original five faculty members, 1868. (Submitted on January 18, 2012, by Richard E. Miller of Oxon Hill, Maryland.)
Additional keywords. Alexander Thomas Augusta; C. B. Powell
Categories. • African Americans • Education • Science & Medicine • War, World II •
Credits. This page was last revised on March 4, 2017. This page originally submitted on January 17, 2012, by Richard E. Miller of Oxon Hill, Maryland. This page has been viewed 586 times since then and 36 times this year. Photos: 1, 2. submitted on January 17, 2012, by Richard E. Miller of Oxon Hill, Maryland. 3, 4. submitted on January 18, 2012, by Richard E. Miller of Oxon Hill, Maryland. 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15. submitted on July 3, 2015, by Allen C. Browne of Silver Spring, Maryland. • Bill Pfingsten was the editor who published this page.