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    • Laura Lewis

      Margaret Sanger, an author and social reformer, gave up nursing to devote herself full-time to the cause of birth control, a term she is credited with originating. In 1914 she fled to Europe when indicted for sending obscene materials through the mails. She returned the following year and opened the first U.S. birth control clinic in Brooklyn. In 1921, she established the American Birth Control League which later merged with other groups and became the Planned Parenthood Federation in 1942.

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    Margaret Higgins Sanger (September 14, 1879 – September 6, 1966), American birth control activist, sex educator, and nurse. She had been arrested on October 26, 1916 for disseminating information about birth control, shortly after opening a clinic (probably the one pictured) in Brooklyn.

    In 1916, Margaret Sanger opens the first birth control clinic in Brooklyn, New York. Ten days later, police raid it and shut down operations. Sanger received a month jail time under the Comstock Laws, which banned contraceptives and forbid family planning literature from circulating through the mail. In 1938, Sanger went to court yet again, and the judge ruled in favor of decriminalizing birth control, dissolving the repressive Comstock statutes.

    Birth control advocate Margaret Sanger has her mouth covered in protest of not being allowed to talk about birth control in Boston. 17 Apr 1929....

    Margaret Sanger (1879-1966) Every sexually-active person who doesn't think twice about parenthood can thank Margaret Sanger. As a nurse on New York City's impoverished Lower East Side, Sanger spent much of her time treating women who were injured during botched illegal abortions. As a result of this, she became convinced that contraceptive control was the primary avenue to freedom (and out of poverty) for women like her mother, who died young after giving birth to 11 children. Though she was born when contraception was illegal, by the time of her death, at 81, Sanger had founded the American Birth Control League — later known as Planned Parenthood — and masterminded the research and funding for the first FDA-approved oral contraceptive, Enovid

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    Katherine Dexter McCormick provided both the social justification and the money to develop “the pill,” in her quest to find a more reliable source of birth control than diaphragms offered. She allied with Margaret Sanger and helped support birth control projects intermittently for thirty years before sponsoring Gregory Pincus’ development of “the pill.” McCormick also funded the building of female dormitories at MIT in an effort to boost female enrollment.

    Birth control advocate, Margaret Sanger, standing next to a train in a station, 1917. DN-0067907.

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    Margaret Sanger - Best known as an activist for birth control and family planning, she pioneered the women’s health movement.