Elizabeth Blackwell establishes a Women's Medical College

During the American Civil War, Blackwell trained many women to be nurses and sent them to the Union Army.

Many women were interested and received training at this time. After the war, Blackwell had time, in 1868, to establish a Women's Medical College at the Infirmary to train women, physicians, and doctors.

When Elizabeth Blackwell returned to the United States in 1859, she resumed work with the Infirmary. During the Civil War, the Blackwell sisters helped to organize the Women's Central Association of Relief, selecting and training nurses for service in the war. This venture helped to inspire the creation of the United States Sanitary Commission, and the Blackwells worked with this organization as well.

A few years after the end of the war, in November 1868, Elizabeth Blackwell carried out a plan that she'd developed in conjunction with Florence Nightingale in England: with her sister, Emily Blackwell, she opened the Women's Medical College at the infirmary. She took the chair of hygiene herself.

Dr. Blackwell founded The Women's Medical College in 1868, adjacent to the New York Infirmary. It was the first school devoted entirely to the medical education of women and later became one of the first medical schools in America to mandate four years of study. The first black woman to become a doctor, Rebecca Cole, was one of the first graduates of the Women's Medical College.