Episode 29: Meet Ellis Shipp

In this episode, Lindsay and Alyssa are joined by Liz Hammond (who blogs as Elisothel at FMH) as Liz relates the fascinating story of Ellis Shipp, a Mormon woman (1847-1939) who was one of the first female doctors in the Utah territory. As part of the growing national feminist movement during this era, new organizations known as the Ladies Physiological Reform Societies called for the need to educate women physicians. These benevolent societies were instrumental in the formation of the Boston Female Medical College and the Female Medical College of Philadelphia in 1850. These two colleges graduated hundreds of female physicians, including Ellis Shipp who is the subject of our podcast today. Come listen to this fascinating and inspiring story of one of our female foremothers and all the tremendous work she accomplished in Utah during her lifetime.

9 thoughts on “Episode 29: Meet Ellis Shipp

  1. That was fascinating! Thank you so much for the research and the inspiration.

    One thing I’m curious about – Ellis and her family lived through the Manifesto. Did she talk about the dissolution of polygamy and what that did to her sister-wives?

  2. First of all, thank you for quoting Jane Austen! And thank you for telling this important story. I especially appreciated the idea that healing is a womanly art and that being a physician enhanced her mothering, her spirituality, and her service in the church and community.

    Anti-feminist rhetoric suggesting that women who choose a career will forego bearing and raising children or that they will not be able to serve in the church is done away with this true story of how gaining MORE education prepares a woman’s mind and heart for MORE service.

    I was moved by the account of Ellis’s sons acting as her assistants and guarding her sleep. I read in another account of her life that they would sometimes have to carry her to a waiting carriage because she was too tired and ill to walk down the stairs, then carry her back in the house when she returned.

    Thank you Liz Hammond. I would love more podcasts about inspiring pioneer women.

  3. Thank you! I had been looking forward to this podcast since I saw it last fall on a list of upcoming episodes. I heard Ellis’s story when I was a child from the “great Mormon women” cassettes, and I fell in love with her story. I can relate really well to the insecurity of the younger Ellis; I hope I can continue to grow and find my calling like she found hers.

    Thank you again. I look forward to more of these stories.

  4. This podcast was well-researched, inspirational, and succinct. I would like to see more historical and biographical podcasts like this. Ellis Shipp’s education and service made me feel proud to be a Mormon woman. Thank you.

  5. Great podcast. I was thinking about leaving my husband and kids for six weeks to do some doctoral research in North Africa and I felt so guilty for even considering it. But hey, Ellis did it for years to complete her studies, with a prophet’s blessing! Amazing,

    (We hopefully will have enough funding to take us all, but should we not, I will face the challenge with the same steadfastness and dignity as Ellis)

  6. I am named after this amazing woman and always love hearing more about her. There are so many lessons to learn from her ordinary life of having faith and always striving to reach your full potential. If you are interested to learn more about Ellis you should read While Others Slept by Ellis R. Shipp and Not In Vain by Susan Evans McCloud. Thanks for the podcast, and I am interested in hearing more!

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