Alice Woodby McKane

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Alice Woodby in 1892

Alice Woodby McKane (1865–1948) was the first woman to work as a doctor in Savannah, Georgia.[1]

Childhood and education[edit]

McKane was born February 12, 1865Bridgewater, Pennsylvania. Her parents died before she reached the age of seven and she lost her vision for three years.[2]

Alice graduated from the Institute for Colored Youth in Philadelphia in 1889.[2] In 1892, she graduated from the Woman's Medical College of Pennsylvania with a medical degree.[3]


Alice moved to Augusta, Georgia where she taught at the Haines Normal and Industrial Institute, now the Lucy Craft Laney High School.[2] She met her husband, Cornelius McKane, and moved with him to his physician's practice in Savannah.[2] In 1893, the couple opened the McKane Training School for Nurses, a school for black nurses and the first one of its kind in Southeast Georgia.She died March 6, 1948.[4]

Alice also wrote and published Clover Leaves, a poetry book, in 1914.[5]


  1. ^ "McKane, Alice Woodby". Georgia Women of Achievement. Retrieved 3 January 2014. 
  2. ^ a b c d Howard-Oglesby, Pamela (2010). Savannah's Black First Ladies: The Past, Present, and Future, Volume 1. Denver, CO: Outskirts Press. ISBN 978-1-4327-3112-0. 
  3. ^ Elmore, Charles J. (Summer 2004). "Black Medical Pioneers in Savannah, 1892-1909: Cornelius McKane and Alice Woodby McKane". The Georgia Historical Quarterly. 88 (2). JSTOR 40584737. 
  4. ^ Cite error: The named reference First_ladies_. was invoked but never defined (see the help page).
  5. ^ McKane, Alice Woodby (1914). Clover Leaves. Boston, MA: Alice Woodby McKane.