Phoebe Pember

Phoebe Pember was considered one of the South's unsung heroes during the Civil War.

 

Phoebe Pember was one of the South's unsung heroes. Her wartime services might have gone unnoticed had she not later composed a memorable account, “A Southern Woman's Story,” relating her experiences as a matron at Chimborazo, the Confederacy's largest hospital. The task she assumed presented many challenges, not the least of which was her pioneering role as a woman working in a man's world.

Born Phoebe Yates Levy in Charleston, South Carolina, in 1823, she was the daughter of a prominent Jewish merchant and a popular actress. In 1856, she married Thomas Pember of Boston, who contracted tuberculosis. Like many women who offered medical care during the Civil War, Phoebe Pember received training at home, nursing a loved one. Her husband died soon after the conflict began, and she returned to live with relatives. In late 1862, she accepted the appointment at Chimborazo and began work at the huge Richmond hospital, spread over 40 acres and containing nearly 150 wards. Before the war ended, physicians there would treat some 75,000 sick and wounded soldiers.

(0) comments

Welcome to the discussion.

Keep it Clean. Please avoid obscene, vulgar, lewd, racist or sexually-oriented language.
PLEASE TURN OFF YOUR CAPS LOCK.
Don't Threaten. Threats of harming another person will not be tolerated.
Be Truthful. Don't knowingly lie about anyone or anything.
Be Nice. No racism, sexism or any sort of -ism that is degrading to another person.
Be Proactive. Use the 'Report' link on each comment to let us know of abusive posts.
Share with Us. We'd love to hear eyewitness accounts, the history behind an article.