Martha Minerva Franklin (1870-1968)
Pioneer of the movement for Black nurses (Inducted 2009)
Martha Minerva Franklin grew up on 63 Cherry Street. She graduated from the Women’s Training School for Nurses in Philadelphia in 1897. Following private duty work, she moved to New Haven and began to address the discrimination she and other African American women nurses faced. Not finding an ally in the American Nurses Association (ANA), she spent two years gathering information about working conditions. In 1908, she called a meeting to establish the National Association of Colored Graduate Nurses, serving as its first president. She continued her education at Lincoln Hospital and Columbia University Teacher’s College, working in the New York City schools. The ANA elevated her to their Hall of Fame in 1976. The Chi Eta Phi Sorority Hartford Chapter installed a plaque at her grave. It is a site on the Connecticut Freedom Trail. The residence is located at 63 Cherry Street in Meriden.
The Connecticut Women's Hall of Fame Historic Site Survey project was funded through generous grants from: