Science Fair Project Encyclopedia
Antoinette Brown, later Antoinette Brown Blackwell (May 20, 1825 - November 5, 1921), was the first female to be ordained as a minister in the United States, when she was called to be the pastor of the Congregational church in South Butler, New York in 1853.
Brown was born in Henrietta, New York, daughter of Joseph Brown and Abby Morse. She spoke in church in her youth. She studied at the Monroe County Academy and taught for a few years.
She graduated from Oberlin College in 1847 and studied at the Oberlin Seminary until 1850, when she was refused a degree and ordination due to her sex. In 1851 she left that church to become a member of the Unitarian Church.
In 1853 she married Samuel C. Blackwell, brother of Elizabeth Blackwell, one of the first female graduates of a medical school in the United States. Her husband's brother Henry B. Blackwell had married Antoinette's college friend, Lucy Stone. She and her husband resided in New York City and New Jersey. They had seven children, but two died in infancy.
She was a prominent speaker at many Women's Rights and Abolitionism meetings. Oberlin College awarded her honorary degrees in 1878 and 1908. She was elected to the American Association for the Advancement of Science.
Antoinette Brown Blackwell died in Elizabeth, New Jersey.
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