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At a time when only men were supposed to become doctors, Elizabeth Blackwell earned a medical degree in 1849 from Geneva Medical College in New York. She was the first woman in the United States to ever earn such a degree. After graduating, she struggled to find ways to expand her medical knowledge. She traveled to France to study at La Maternite hospital in Paris. A serious eye infection forced Blackwell to lose her left eye and ended her dreams of becoming a surgeon. In 1853, she founded a free dispensary in New York City, the first of her many efforts to help provide women and children with better health care. Throughout her career, she fought tirelessly to help other women gain opportunities in medicine. Book jacket.