David K. McDonogh was a slave when he came to Lafayette College in 1838. He graduated in 1844 as Lafayette’s first black graduate to go on to attend classes at the College of Physicians and Surgeons in New York. This institution would not grant him a degree, but his classmates treated him as a physician. He later received a degree from Eclectic Medical College of New York. After his death, McDonough Memorial Hospital was named in his honor and opened as New York City’s first hospital to admit physicians and patients without discrimination by race.
For this project, students will be assigned original letters from the first black students at Lafayette, which they will analyze and interpret. By the end of the class, students will prepare a time-line of the McDonogh experience with correlating social and historical information.
The exhibition: Tales of our Brothers, the Journey of David and Washington McDonogh, will follow on October 5th in Pardee Hall.