If you’re in the area, please stop by the Swanson Library in Omaha (https://omahalibrary.org/locations/ON/) and check out the Dr. Susan LaFlesche Picotte Exhibit. Then check out all the work being done to restore her hospital into a community center (https://www.drsusancenter.org).
Dr. Picotte seems to finally be getting her due as one of America’s heroes. She fought against racism and gender discrimination to become the first Native American to earn a medical license in the U.S. After returning from her studies on the east coast, Dr. Picotte worked hard to serve the people of northeast Nebraska and northwest Iowa. Eventually in 1913, Susan established and oversaw the first non-government funded hospital on a reservation.
Recognizing the importance of this structure, individuals from in and around it’s home in Walthill, NE started organizing to restore. Currently, that restoration effort is in full-swing. A $100,000 USDA grant went a long way to booster the project. Shortly there after in spring 2019, a $50,000 grant from the Shakopee-Mdewakanton nation fully funded roof replacement. Now the project team looks to use a $589,675 RBD grant from the USDA to refurbish the exterior.
The non-profit working to restore the hospital welcomes opportunities to spread the word about Dr. Picotte and the restoration project. Please let us know if you are aware of events or projects in your area that speak to her greatness or could use a booth or exhibit that does.
And please don’t forget to get plenty of fresh air and sunshine–Dr. Susan LaFlesche Picotte’s most trusted treatment for all that ails.