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Emma Post, Illegal Abortion Death
Seducer arranged fatal abortion
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Emma Post, "about twenty years of age, daughter of one of our most respectable citizens, was sudeced by a young man living at Belleville." He called on her at the family home for about a year before learning that she was pregnant.

He convinced her to leave Brooklyn with him. She told them she was going to visit somebody in Dover. Instead, "she was kept in two houses of ill repute in this city." From there she was taken to Boston, where she submitted to a surgical abortion. She was spirited off to Newburyport on Wendesday. On Thursday, June 11, 1857, she "paid the forfeit of such acts, dying in excrutiating agony."

Her baby's father, F.R. Kickason, was arrested, as was Dr. Lewis Dix, believed to have performed the abortion.

Illegal by Doctors Illegal by Paramedical Illegal by Amateurs Self Induced

I have no information on overall maternal mortality, or abortion mortality, in the 19th century. I imagine it can't be too much different from maternal and abortion mortality at the very beginning of the 20th Century.

Note, please, that with issues such as doctors not using proper aseptic techniques, lack of access to blood transfusions and antibiotics, and overall poor health to begin with, there was likely little difference between the performance of a legal abortion and illegal practice, and the aftercare for either type of abortion was probably equally unlikely to do the woman much, if any, good.

For more on this era, see Abortion Deaths in the 19th Century.

For more on pre-legalization abortion, see The Bad Old Days of Abortion

Source: "Seduction, Abortion and Death -- Another Doctor in Trouble", The Brooklyn Eagle, June 17, 1857

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