Susannah Lattin

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Susannah Lattin (1848-1868) was an American woman who died of a postpartum infection at an illegal abortion and adoption clinic at 6 Amity Place in New York City. The clinic was operated by Henry Dyer Grindle. She was told to pay $150 (the equivalent of $4,000 in 2020) for an abortion. Grindle determined that she was too far along in her pregnancy, and she stayed at the clinic until she gave birth. The child was anonymously adopted. Her death led to an investigation which resulted in the regulation of abortion and adoptions in New York City in 1868.

Quotes about Lattin

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  • A Coroner's inquest is now being held on the body of Miss Susannah Lattin, from the evidence at which it appears that since January, twenty children have been born in the house and that they were all adopted out to strangers. No questions were asked and no record was kept of the children's whereabouts.
  • George Lattin testified that deceased was his sister; he had heard that she left home, but, did not know to what place she had gone; in company with one of his sisters he went in search of her, but failed to find her; about the 5th of June he received a letter from her, dated New-York, in which she stated that the young man who had been keeping her company left her and went away to Maryland; that she was in a destitute condition, and that the landlady threatened to turn her out; she also mentioned the delicate condition in which she was; witness sent his brother-in-law to bring her away, and when she came home and stated that a young men with whom she had been keeping company put her in that condition; his name he thought was George Holten, clerk in Whitehouse's shoe store, Fulton-street, Brooklyn; she told him the whole story of her acquaintance with the young man, how he had sent her packages of medicine to produce a miscarriage, and when she wrote to say she had found the medicine of no avail, he returned answer, telling her to come down at once to Brooklyn as something else should be done; she also interned witness that two doctors had had a consultation in her case in reference to producing an abortion, but the operation was not performed.
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