Isaac D. Burrell: Opened First Black-Owned Drugstore in Southwestern Virginia

1 Posted by - June 4, 2019 - LATEST POSTS

Isaac David Burrell was the son of a former slave.  Burrell opened the first black-owned drugstore in southwestern Virginia.

Burrell attended the Leonard Medical College of Shaw University in Raleigh, North Carolina where he received an M.D. in 1893. After completing his studies, he moved to southwestern Virginia where he opened a drug store.

Because black patients were denied admission to the city’s white hospitals, he made the 220-mile journey by train to Freedman’s Hospital in Washington, D.C., where he died shortly after undergoing surgery for gallstones.

After Burrell died, black physicians of Roanoke worked together to open a hospital for their patients. The hospital was named in Burrell’s honor, Burrell Memorial Hospital, the ten-bed facility was on Henry Street. In 1919, the city leased the abandoned buildings of the Allegheny Institute to the doctors who ran the black hospital there from 1921 until 1955, when a modern brick hospital was constructed with the help of a woman’s auxiliary. The civil rights movement opened white hospitals to black patients, and Burrell Memorial Hospital closed in 1978.

In 1919, the city leased the abandoned buildings of the Allegheny Institute to the doctors who ran the black hospital there from 1921 until 1955, when a modern brick hospital was constructed with the help of a woman’s auxiliary. The civil rights movement opened white hospitals to black patients, and Burrell Memorial Hospital closed in 1978.

source:

http://www.lva.virginia.gov/public/trailblazers/2007/index.htm?bio=burrell

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