House Calls Without A Horse or Buggy

Susan Anderson house calls

That’s one of the legacies of Susan “Doc Suzy” Anderson, one of the first female doctors in the west. She found it hard to practice her profession after getting a medical degree from the University of Michigan in 1897—there was the prejudice against a female physician, as well as her own health struggles with tuberculosis. She eventually settled in the mountain community of Frazer, Colorado in 1907—its high altitude was cold and dry and good to arrest her disease–where she didn’t even tell anyone she was a trained doctor. But word got around and locals started asking for her help. Most of her patients required her to make house calls, and although she never owned a horse or buggy, or later, a car, she went on foot. She’d dress in layers and wear high hip boots, trekking through deep snow and freezing temperatures. She became a respected and beloved member of the community, but never got rich, for she often was pad in firewood and food. She died in Denver in 1960.

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