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Louisiana's First Black Nurses (2013)

Louisiana: The State We're In



Genre: Newsmagazine

Place Covered: Baton Rouge, East Baton Rouge Parish, Louisiana

Copyright Holder: Louisiana Educational Television Authority

Date Issued: 2013-12-13

Duration: 00:07:50

Subjects: Segregation | Discrimination | Baton Rouge General Medical Center | Hospitals | African American nurses | Health Care


  • Sanford, Shauna Host
  • Whinham, Charlie Host
  • Sanford, Shauna Producer
  • Woods, Virnado Photographer
  • Forbes, Joann Interviewee
  • Joseph, Earl Dean Interviewee
  • Jackson, Catherine Interviewee
  • Rucker, Ethel Interviewee
  • Miller, Gwendolyn Interviewee
  • Clark, Lucinda Interviewee


This segment from the December 13, 2013, episode of the series “Louisiana: The State We’re In” features Shauna Sanford's interviews with five of the first black nurses in Louisiana during the 1950s, Earl Dean Joseph, Catherine Jackson, Ethel Rucker, Gwendolyn Miller and Lucinda Clark. They discuss: their training at the Capital Area Trade School in Baton Rouge, the first nursing school available to African Americans; their work at the Baton Rouge General Hospital in the Four South unit, the only hospital unit available to black nurses and patients; caring for their patients with inferior equipment; and the integration of the hospital’s cafeteria. Hosts: Shauna Sanford and Charlie Whinham