This week at Thackray we have introduced our new LEGO trail. As part of the A Healthy Future fundraising campaign, we have been steadily building Thackray out of LEGO Bricks. Visitors donate £1 per brick and with the help of our LEGO coordinator add their brick to our growing model. So as our LEGO museum gets ever taller we decided to inject a bit of LEGO love into the collections.
With their donation, visitors will be given a sheet of important medical mini-figures to find whilst they explore the museum. As well as supporting our renovation fundraising campaign, this was a perfect chance to learn about some lesser known medical icons.
Anandi Gopal Joshi for example! After being married at 9 and losing her first child at 14, Joshi was determined to study medicine and help other women and children who were not getting the care they needed. In 1885 she became one of the first Indian women to achieve a degree in western medicine and became a role model for other women.
And Daniel Hale Williams who was the first surgeon to perform successful open-heart surgery. He opened the first non-segregated hospital in the United States and in 1895 founded the National Medical Association, which to this day supports and represents the needs of African American physicians and patients in the United States.
And of course, Mary Seacole, a British-Jamaican nurse who set up the British Hotel during the Crimean war. Although rejected from Florence Nightingale’s nursing team because of racial prejudice, she travelled independently to Crimea to help the wounded and was voted the greatest Black Briton in 2004.