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Dr. Rachel Keith

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Information about Dr. Rachel Keith

Profile image of Dr. Rachel Keith

Profession

Category:
MedicalMakers
Occupation(s):
Physician

Favorites

Favorite Color:
Red
Favorite Food:
Cobbler (Peach)
Favorite Time of Year:
Fall
Favorite Vacation Spot:
Florida
Favorite Quote:
That's Alright.

Birthplace

Born:
5/30/1924
Birth Location:
Monrovia,

Profession

Category:
MedicalMakers
Occupation(s):
Physician

Favorites

Favorite Color:
Red
Favorite Food:
Cobbler (Peach)
Favorite Time of Year:
Fall
Favorite Vacation Spot:
Florida
Favorite Quote:
That's Alright.

Birthplace

Born:
5/30/1924
Birth Location:
Monrovia
See how Dr. Rachel Keith is related to other HistoryMakers

Biography

Detroit physician Rachel B. Keith was born Rachel Hannah Celestine Boone on May 30, 1924, in Monrovia, Liberia; her parents, Reverends Clinton C. and Rachel Tharps Boone, were Baptist medical missionaries. Keith’s grandfather, Reverend Lemuel Washington Boone, was a founding trustee of Shaw University. Keith came to the United States at age three and began her schooling at Richmond, Virginia’s Paul Laurence Dunbar Elementary School; she graduated from Armstrong High School in 1938, at age thirteen. That same year, Keith lost her mother and moved in with her aunt, Dr. Bessie B. Tharps, in Rhode Island. Keith graduated second in her class from Houghton College in upstate New York in 1943; she completed her medical degree at Boston University School of Medicine in 1949.

In 1949, Keith was featured in The Boston Globe for achieving the highest score to that date on a medical school test. One-time president of the Blackwell Society, Keith was also featured in Look Magazine’s 1949 story about Boston University’s home medical service. After completing her internship at Harlem Hospital, Keith served at Brooklyn’s Coney Island Hospital before moving to Detroit in 1951. Keith completed a two-year residency in internal medicine at Detroit Receiving Hospital in 1953; in 1954, she joined the staff at Detroit Memorial Hospital and entered private practice with Dr. Thomas Batchelor in Conant Gardens. Keith’s hospital affiliations included Burton Mercy Hospital and Sinai Hospital; she was also a member of the Wayne County Medical Society, Michigan State Medical Society, American Medical Association, Detroit Medical Society, Detroit Gastroenterological Society, and the National Medical Association.

Active in the NAACP and the Links, Keith held memberships in the American Leprosy Mission; the Detroit Science Center; and the Detroit Symphony Orchestra. Keith also served on the Michigan Board of Medicine from 1986 to 1993. Keith and her husband, Judge Damon Keith, raised three daughters.

Keith passed away on Thursday, January 4, 2007.

See how Dr. Rachel Keith is related to other HistoryMakers
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  • Tape: 1 Story: 1 - Slating of Dr. Rachel Keith's interview
  • Tape: 1 Story: 2 - Dr. Rachel Keith lists her favorites
  • Tape: 1 Story: 3 - Dr. Rachel Keith describes her mother's family background
  • Tape: 1 Story: 4 - Dr. Rachel Keith describes her earliest childhood memory
  • Tape: 1 Story: 5 - Dr. Rachel Keith describes her mother's childhood and education
  • Tape: 1 Story: 6 - Dr. Rachel Keith describes her father's family background, pt. 1
  • Tape: 1 Story: 7 - Dr. Rachel Keith describes her father's family background, pt. 2
  • Tape: 1 Story: 8 - Dr. Rachel Keith describes her father's books
  • Tape: 1 Story: 9 - Dr. Rachel Keith describes her parents' personalities
  • Tape: 2 Story: 1 - Dr. Rachel Keith recalls her memories of Liberia
  • Tape: 2 Story: 2 - Dr. Rachel Keith recalls her piano lessons as a girl
  • Tape: 2 Story: 3 - Dr. Rachel Keith describes the sights, sounds and smells of her childhood
  • Tape: 2 Story: 4 - Dr. Rachel Keith remembers the Great Depression
  • Tape: 2 Story: 5 - Dr. Rachel Keith describes her education and decision to study medicine
  • Tape: 2 Story: 6 - Dr. Rachel Keith remembers her teachers at Armstrong High School in Richmond, Virginia
  • Tape: 2 Story: 7 - Dr. Rachel Keith remembers her parents' deaths and moving to Rhode Island
  • Tape: 3 Story: 1 - Dr. Rachel Keith recalls her education at Cranston High School and Houghton University
  • Tape: 3 Story: 2 - Dr. Rachel Keith describes her musical studies at Houghton College
  • Tape: 3 Story: 3 - Dr. Rachel Keith describes her decision to study medicine
  • Tape: 3 Story: 4 - Dr. Rachel Keith talks about women in medical school during World War II
  • Tape: 3 Story: 5 - Dr. Rachel Keith describes her courses at Boston University School of Medicine
  • Tape: 3 Story: 6 - Dr. Rachel Keith describes the Home Medical Service program at Boston University
  • Tape: 3 Story: 7 - Dr. Rachel Keith remembers being photographed by Look magazine
  • Tape: 4 Story: 1 - Dr. Rachel Keith recalls her professors at Boston University School of Medicine
  • Tape: 4 Story: 2 - Dr. Rachel Keith remembers interning at New York City's Harlem Hospital Center
  • Tape: 4 Story: 3 - Dr. Rachel Keith recalls her first impressions of Detroit, Michigan
  • Tape: 4 Story: 4 - Dr. Rachel Keith describes how she met her husband, HistoryMaker Damon J. Keith
  • Tape: 4 Story: 5 - Dr. Rachel Keith describes establishing her private practice
  • Tape: 4 Story: 6 - Dr. Rachel Keith recalls segregation in the medical field during the 1950s
  • Tape: 5 Story: 1 - Dr. Rachel Keith recalls the desegregation of Detroit hospitals
  • Tape: 5 Story: 2 - Dr. Rachel Keith recalls hearing HistoryMaker Reverend Jesse L. Jackson speak
  • Tape: 5 Story: 3 - Dr. Rachel Keith describes her work with the Detroit chapter of the NAACP
  • Tape: 5 Story: 4 - Dr. Rachel Keith describes health issues that impact the African American community
  • Tape: 5 Story: 5 - Dr. Rachel Keith recalls discrimination in Detroit, Michigan
  • Tape: 5 Story: 6 - Dr. Rachel Keith reflects upon her life.
  • Tape: 5 Story: 7 - Dr. Rachel Keith reflects upon issues with patients self-medicating
  • Tape: 5 Story: 8 - Dr. Rachel Keith reflects upon her legacy
  • Tape: 6 Story: 1 - Dr. Rachel Keith describes her committee positions
  • Tape: 6 Story: 2 - Dr. Rachel Keith shares her thoughts on socialized medicine
  • Tape: 6 Story: 3 - Dr. Rachel Keith talks about her family
  • Tape: 6 Story: 4 - Dr. Rachel Keith describes how she would like to be remembered
  • Tape: 6 Story: 5 - Dr. Rachel Keith narrates her photographs, pt. 1
  • Tape: 6 Story: 6 - Dr. Rachel Keith narrates her photographs, pt. 2