The next iconic figure we would like to feature for Women’s History Month is someone whom Quest thanks for her work pioneering the exposure of neglect and abuse to women. Her work enabled future support and funds for all those who cannot speak out for themselves.
Elizabeth Cochran Seaman, was an American investigative journalist. Using her pen name, Nellie Bly, she worked for Joseph Pulitzer’s “New York World”. She is known for going undercover to expose the cruel and inhumane treatment of patients in Blackwell’s Island Asylum in New York in 1887.
Afraid she would be hard to find if her experiment were to go wrong, she kept her initials but used the name Nellie Brown. Nellie’s journey started when she publicly displayed irregular behaviors to get herself committed at the Temporary Home for Females.
After policemen escorted her to the courthouse, she was ruled to be not in her right mind and was admitted to Blackwell’s Island Asylum where she kept note of her findings from within. What she saw was terrible and shocking to the naïve public. For 10 days she witnessed the despicable treatment of patients, some she believed were in a typical mental state.
Her discoveries were published in her book called “Ten Days in a Mad-House”. The book went on to be a best seller and earned her fame. Her brave reporting also ignited a $1,000,000 increase in funds to the institution.
Quest applauds Nellie for taking action. Be on the lookout for our blog post this week highlighting more dynamic women as we wrap up our celebration of Women’s History Month 2019!