10 Facts About Susie King Taylor: 1st Black Nurse

Susie King Taylor

“There are many people who do not know what some of the colored women did during the war. There were hundreds of them who assisted the Union soldiers by hiding them and helping them to escape.”

1. Susie King Taylor was born Susan Baker, and born into slavery, on the Grest Plantation in Liberty County, Georgia, on August 6, 1848. She was the eldest of nine children by Hagar Ann Reed and Raymond Baker.

2. Susie King Taylor was the first Black Army nurse. She tended to an all Black army troop named the First South Carolina Volunteers, 33rd Regiment, where her husband served, for four years during the Civil War. Despite her service, like many African American nurses, she was never paid for her work.

Susie King Taylor Class in Liberty County, GA

Susie King Taylor Class in Liberty County, GA

3. She was the first African-American to teach former slaves in a school openly in the state of Georgia. At this school in Savannah, GA she taught children during the day and adults at night.

4. Susan learned to read by attending secret schools in Georgia as a child. There she was taught by other educated Black women the fundamentals of reading and later she was educated by two Caucasian youths who instructed her despite that fact that this practice was illegal at the time.

5. While serving as a nurse for the Union during the Civil War she taught Union Soldiers how to read and write when they were off duty.

Susie King Taylor's Home & School in Savannah, GA

Susie King Taylor's Home & School in Savannah, GA

6. Mrs. Taylor often visited the sick and injured at the first regimental hospital for Black soldiers, in Beaumont, South Carolina. Here she met and worked alongside Clara Barton, who later founded the Red Cross. Susie continued to serve a nurse for the United States Army until the end of the war in 1865.

Clara Barton, Founder of the Red Cross

Clara Barton, Founder of the Red Cross

7. Mrs. Taylor was the only African American woman to publish a memoir of her wartime experiences. This memoir was entitled: “Reminiscences of My Life in Camp with the 33rd United States Colored Troops, Late 1st S.C. Volunteers”.

8. Susie King Taylor had two husbands during her lifetime. Her first husband was Sgt. Edward King, a Black non-commissioned officer in the Union, who died before the birth of their first child in 1866. Her second husband was Russell Taylor of Boston, MA whom she married in 1879. It is not known as to whether this second marriage produced any children.

9. Susie King Taylor also served as president of the Women’s Relief Corps in 1893. Previously she had served as guard, secretary and treasurer. The Women’s Relief Corps was an organization whose purpose was to give assistance to soldiers and hospitals. During the Spanish-American War, she furnished and packed boxes for wounded men in hospitals.

10. Susan Baker King Taylor died in 1912 at the age of sixty-four in Boston and she is currently interred at Mount Hope Cemetery in Roslindale, Massachusetts.

  • http://www.blackartblog.blackartdepot.com brianna

    this is really what susie king taylor is about i love this website

    • http://www.blackartdepot.com Haasim

      Thanks for the kind words and encouragement. We will continue to try to do our best everyday!

  • http://susiekingtaylor donovan

    it was great information

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  • Me

    Im doing a bibliography and I need to know who the author is so f you could post you name in a comment that would be awesome!

  • va_gal

    The article says she was born in 1848 and served all 4 years in the Civil War (1861-1865)…. that would make her 13 when she started serving. Is that correct???

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