A History of Women In Dentistry

Friday, March 18, 2016
A History of Women In Dentistry

Determination and passion drove these women to be trailblazers in the field of dentistry.

In honor of Women’s History Month, Penn Dental Family Practice would like to pay tribute to the women who paved the way for all women in dentistry past, present and future! Now, take a closer look at the women who impacted world of dentistry!

A History of Women In Dentistry

Lucy Beaman Hobbs Taylor (1833-1910)

Lucy Hobbs Taylor is known as the first women in the world to earn a Doctor of Dental Surgery Degree in 1866. As a teacher in Brooklyn, Michigan she roomed with a physician, and this sparked her interest in Medicine.  She moved to Cincinnati where she was going to enroll in medical school, but the school refused her entrance and told her to pursue dentistry. In 1861, Taylor then went onto The Ohio College of Dentistry, where the faculty refused to admit her. The dean of the college, Jonathan Taft, decided to teach Taylor in his office.  Taylor went on to open up her own practice in Iowa without a degree.  The Iowa State Dental Society succeeded at pressuring the Ohio College of Dentistry to enroll Taylor as a student. Lucy Hobbs Taylor was only required to attend one session before she graduated with her DDS.

Emeline Roberts Jones (1836 – 1916)

Emeline Jones is most likely known as the first woman to practice dentistry. Jones was interested in dentistry, but dental colleges at that time didn’t admit women.  Determined to learn dentistry on her own, Jones secretly practiced on discarded teeth she obtained through her husband’s dental practice. In 1855, her husband allowed her to join his practice. In 1864, Jones’ husband passed away and she continued the dental practice to support her children.  According to the Connecticut Women’s Hall of Fame, Jones was the first woman dentist nationally recognized at the 1893 World’s Columbian Dental Congress.

Lillian Lindsay  (1871-1960)

Lillian Lindsay was a pioneer for women in dentistry in the United Kingdom. In 1895, Lindsay graduated with LDS, and was the first woman to qualify as a dentist in the United Kingdom. Women from the United Kingdom would often travel to the United States to acquire training as a dentist. Lindsay also became the first woman to join the British Dental Association in November of 1895.

These brave woman and many more are the ones that paved the way for all women to pursue their love of dentistry. Taylor, Jones, and Lindsay didn’t allow others to get in the way of their dreams, and because of their determination, we at Penn Dental Family Practice, have some of the most experienced and dedicated women in dentistry on staff. Make your appointment today!