LGBT People of History 27 - Alan L Hart
Alan L Hart
Alan Lucille Hart (1890 – 1962) was born in Kansas and was assigned female at birth. He spent an idyllic childhood dressing and behaving as a boy. At school he was obliged to dress and behave as a girl. He hated this. During his later school years he would write essays about ‘male’ subjects under a male pseudonym. He obtained an MD degree from the University of Oregon. The degree was issued in his female name and at the time this limited his opportunities.
In 1917, Hart and Dr Joshua Gilbert held discussions and Hart eventually convinced him that he required the removal of otherwise healthy tissue so that he could live as a man. (Previously Magnus Hirschfeld had set a precedent for sex reassignment surgery for female to male (FTM) for Karl Baer.) After his surgery, Hart changed his name and got married to Inez Stark.
After a traumatic start to his medical career (eg one of his old medical school classmates outed him as a woman forcing them to move) resulting in many moves and unreliable finances, Inez left him. They divorced soon after. He then married Edna Ruddick and this marriage lasted until he died. His career then took off and he specialised in tuberculosis and radiology at various locations throughout the US. He became one of the most eminent specialists in these fields of medicine and his research contributed to reducing the death rate from this horrible disease to one fiftieth of what it had been. Quite a man!
After WW2, synthetic hormones became available and because of this Hart could now grow a beard and his voice became deeper. He was also a writer of fictional stories and novels.
He died of heart failure in 1962 leaving his widow, Edna. He led a fruitful and fulfilling life.
Ian and Callum.
With thanks to Wikipedia.
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- LGBT People Of History Collection
Here are the links to each of the LGBT People Of History hubs that Ian and I have wrote. As mentioned above, each time a new one is published you will find it on here.