1927 Buck vs. Bell trial, Paul Lombardo
Interviewee: Paul Lombardo. Carrie's one-hour sterilization took place in 1927, the same year that Babe Ruth hit 60 home runs and Charles Lindbergh flew solo across the Atlantic. (DNAi Location: Chronicle > Trial of Carrie Buck > Outcome > Carrie's sterilization in context. )
In 1927, Babe Ruth hit 60 home runs. Charles Lindbergh crossed the Atlantic in the first solo flight, and Calvin Coolidge was president. And in 1927 Carrie Buck was brought to this building and sterilized in an operation that would make legal and medical history. Carrie spent about an hour in surgery. She was given morphine to calm her and deaden the pain. The operation itself was quick and short, done by surgeon John Bell, the director of the Colony.
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Paul Lombardo talks about Amherst County Courthouse was the first step of a legal case that would lead all the way to the Supreme Court.
Paul Lombardo discussed Carrie Buck's state of mind before the Buck vs. Bell trial.
Paul Lombardo talks about twisting the truth at Buck vs. Bell.
Paul Lombardo talks about although she tried several times, Carrie was never able to bring her mother Emma home from the Virginia Colony.
mma and Carrie Buck were committed to the Virginia Colony because they were unmarried mothers and were considered morally delinquent.
Paul Lombardo talks about the only photograph of Carrie Buck with her mother Emma, taken the day before she would stand trial before the collective onslaught of the American eugenics movement.
Lombardo discusses the emotions that Carrie Buck may have been feeling before the Buck vs. Bell trial.
Carrie Buck, who was stripped of her right to reproduce, was born only blocks away from Jefferson's rotunda at the University of Virginia, a symbol of American freedom.
Paul Lombardo talks about although the Virginia statute included safeguards, many people deemed "unfit" were sterilized without their knowledge.
Virginia Sterilization Act. Source: Paul Lombardo, University of Virginia.