Dr. Mary Corinna Putnam Jacobi

Timeline: August 31, 1842 – June 10, 1906

Place of study: Female Medical College of Pennsylvania

École de Médecine of the University of Paris

Contributions to the field of medicine: 
  • Dr. Jacobi wrote her famous essay ‘The Question of Rest for Women during Menstruation’ in response to a book that claimed physical exertion in menstruating women could make them infertile and was awarded Harvard University’s Boylston Prize (1876).
  • She conducted an extensive study on menstruating women to study their cycles and women’s strength, agility, and flexibility at that time, thus fighting to dispel the myth of menstruation.
  • Dr. Jacobi continued to fight for women’s education and to be recognized for their contributions to the medicinal field.
  • When she was diagnosed with a brain tumor, she wrote another book, ‘Description of the Early Symptoms of the Meningeal Tumor Compressing the Cerebellum. From Which the Writer Died. Written by Herself’, which detailed the symptoms of her illness.


Association for the Advancement of the Medical Education of Women, President (1874 – 1903)

New York Pathological Society, Member

New York Academy of Medicine, (First female) Member

League for Political Education, Co-founder


Harvard University’s Boylston Prize (1876)

Fun fact:

Dr. Jacobi used to write fiction books!


1. Dr. Mary Corinna Putnam Jacobi. Available from: https://cfmedicine.nlm.nih.gov/physicians/biography_163.html. Accessed on 26 November 2020.

2. Davis PJ. DOCTORS AFIELD – Mary Putnam Jacobi. N Engl J Med 1965;273:1036-1038.

Image courtesy: https://cfmedicine.nlm.nih.gov/physicians/biography_163.html
For representation purpose only.