Jane Todd Crawford project video thumbnail
Replay with sound
Play with
sound
$765 pledged of $30,000 goal
backers
By Joy Neighbors
$765 pledged of $30,000 goal
backers

About

Hello!  I’m Joy Neighbors and I’m writing a book about an incredible medical pioneer, Jane Todd Crawford. With this book, I intend to tell her story; how, because of her courage, abdominal surgery became acceptable.

I write a weekly blog about cemetery culture called A Grave Interest, http://agraveinterest.blogspot.com.  It was during my cemetery wanderings that I discovered the grave, and the amazing story, of Jane Todd Crawford. She was the first woman, the first person actually, to undergo and survive abdominal surgery. She underwent this operation for the removal of an ovarian tumor – a 22-pound ovarian tumor. I am writing this book because Jane's incredible story is being forgotten and lost.

It’s December 1809, Jane’s ‘pregnancy’ has gone beyond nine months - well beyond.  A country doctor diagnosis’s her with an ovarian tumor, a death sentence.  But he thinks he can operate and, maybe, save her.  He tells Jane that this surgery has never been done. But Jane has no other options; she agrees to take this chance.

Jane travels 60 miles on horseback, resting the tumor on the saddle pommel. The journey takes several days, during a snowy December, to reach the doctor’s house.  Anesthesia doesn’t yet exist; Jane agrees to be held down by several strong arms.  Outside, the cries of an angry mob can be heard as they await word that Jane has died.  They plan to lynch the doctor for having the nerve to 'play God.'  The operation takes 25 grueling minutes. In the end, the country doctor, who thought he could pull this off - does, and Jane has a second chance at life!

This is an astonishing story about a courageous woman, her life and times, and the challenges and risks she, and her doctor, Ephraim McDowell, undertook.  This book will look at Jane’s life, at a woman’s life, at the beginning of the nineteenth century in Kentucky and Indiana. The risks, the fears, the hardships endured when you have only your family, your faith, and your wits to sustain you.  In the Kentucky backwoods, in 1809, Jane risked it all – and won! And thanks to her courage, abdominal and ovarian surgery became accepted, and survivable.

This is a story I can’t shake, and one I want to tell.  That’s why I need your help!  In order to write this book, I will need to travel to conduct first hand interviews and research throughout Indiana and Kentucky.  I need to locate old photographs, newspaper images, and medical accounts about the surgery from the 19th and 20th centuries.  I want to search the National Archives for Dr. McDowell’s notes and information from the medical community about this and other questionable ovarian and abdominal surgeries of this era. Dr. McDowell is well remembered with statues, monuments, a museum, but Jane is not, and her legacy is being lost.

There is also the business aspect that needs taken care of; book costs including editing, layout, rights, printing, shipping, ISBN fees, license. Promotional costs including cover design, PR, marketing, rewards and shipping, travel to promote book. Administration fees for Kickstarter and Amazon, and, as always, taxes.

Together, we can revive Jane's story of incredible courage. I appreciate anything you can do to help!

Thank You!!

Risks and challenges

This is a project I've dedicated myself to and intend to follow through on. However, it could be a challenge to locate some information from the early 1800's. I will be traveling as I search for this material and may find it cost prohibitive to research it all completely, if items are few and far between. In addition, people may have pertinent materials, but choose not to release them to be printed in a book.

I am undertaking this project with the belief that none of these potential challenges are, in fact, the situation. In the end, it is up to you, the backer, to decide the validity and worthiness this project by deciding whether to fund it.

Learn about accountability on Kickstarter

Questions about this project? Check out the FAQ

Support

  1. Select this reward

    Pledge $10 or more About $10

    Interest Level:
    My appreciation and a public THANK YOU on the Jane Todd Crawford Project Facebook group page.

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    1 backer
    $
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  2. Select this reward

    Pledge $25 or more About $25

    Support Level:
    A soft cover version of the Jane Todd Crawford book and a public THANK YOU on the Jane Todd Crawford Project Facebook group page.

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    9 backers
    $
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  3. Select this reward

    Pledge $50 or more About $50

    Awareness Level:
    A hard cover version of the book, signed by the author, along with a 16" x 20" wall poster with Jane's original grave stone in the center, surrounded by photos and drawings pertinent to this project. And a THANK YOU on the Jane Todd Crawford Facebook page. (Please add $5 if shipping address is outside the United States.)

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    3 backers
    $
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  4. Select this reward

    Pledge $100 or more About $100

    Community Level:
    Two hard cover books, signed by the author with a message of your choice. A 24" x 36" wall poster with Jane's original grave stone in the center, surrounded by photos and drawings pertinent to this project, an audio CD of the book, read by the author, and a THANK YOU on the Jane Todd Crawford Facebook page. (Please add $10 if shipping address is outside the United States.)

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    1 backer
    $
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  5. Select this reward

    Pledge $150 or more About $150

    Remembrance Level:
    A mention of someone you wish to honor who had ovarian cancer in the Remembrance pages of the book, along with their photo. Two hard cover books, signed by the author with a message of your choice. A 24" x 36" wall poster with Jane's original grave stone in the center, surrounded by photos and drawings pertinent to this project, an audio CD of the book, read by the author, and a THANK YOU on the Jane Todd Crawford Facebook page. (Please add $10 if shipping address is outside the United States.)

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    0 backers
    $
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  6. Select this reward

    Pledge $250 or more About $250

    Patron Level:
    A DVD tour with the author along the Jane Todd Crawford Trail. Your name listed on the Patron page of the book plus, three hard back copies of the book, signed, with a message of your choice. Also an audio CD of the book, read by the author, a 24" x 36" wall poster and a THANK YOU on the Jane Todd Crawford Facebook page. (Please add $10 if shipping address is outside the United States.)

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    1 backer
    $
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  7. Select this reward

    Pledge $500 or more About $500

    Activist Level:
    A DVD video tour led by the author, covering those places most important in Jane's life, including her family home, the trail she rode to Danville, Kentucky, the McDowell House, where the surgery took place, and the cemetery where Jane is buried. Four hard bound copies of the book with original Jane Todd Crawford book markers, personal inscription, your name on the Activist page of the book, an audio CD of the book, read by the author. Also, a 24" x 36" wall poster and a THANK YOU on Jane Todd Crawford Facebook page. (Please add $15 if shipping address is outside the United States.)

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    0 backers
    $
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  8. Select this reward

    Pledge $1,000 or more About $1,000

    Leadership Level:
    A personal tour for you and three friends with the author and staff of the McDowell House and Museum. A DVD video tour led by the author, covering those places most important in Jane's life, including her family home, the trail she rode to Danville, Kentucky, the McDowell House, where the surgery took place, and the cemetery where Jane is buried. Also, four hard bound copies of the book, signed as you wish, with book marks. A framed 16" x 20" scanned gravestone rubbing from Jane's original stone, along with a 24" x 36" wall poster. Your name on the Leadership page of the book, an audio CD of the book, read by the author, and a THANK YOU on Jane Todd Crawford Facebook page.

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    0 backers
    $
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  9. Select this reward

    Pledge $1,000 or more About $1,000

    Speaking Level:
    For companies, businesses, groups - I will speak to ten people for each $1,000 pledged. (40 people = $4,000 Pledge) A soft cover book for each attendee, signed by the author. For the group, ten 24" x 36" wall posters (great for door prizes), an audio CD of the book, read by the author, and a THANK YOU on the Jane Todd Crawford Facebook page. (All travel and expenses to be paid by backer.)

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    0 backers
    $
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  10. Select this reward

    Pledge $2,500 or more About $2,500

    Historian Level:
    You set the date for a Nineteenth Century Dinner for you and three friends. Then the four of you will enjoy a personal tour with the author and staff of the McDowell House and Museum, where the surgery occurred. (You are responsible for all costs getting to and from Danville, Kentucky, including lodging and food.) A DVD video tour led by the author, covering those places most important in Jane's life, including her family home, the trail she rode to Danville, Kentucky, the McDowell House, where the surgery took place, and the cemetery where Jane is buried. Six hard bound copies of the book with original Jane Todd Crawford book markers, personal inscription, your name on the Historian page of the book, and an audio CD of the book, read by the author. Also, one framed 16" x 20" scanned gravestone rubbing from Jane's original stone, a 24" x 36" wall poster, and THANK YOU on the Jane Todd Crawford Facebook page.

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    0 backers
    $
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  11. Select this reward

    Pledge $5,000 or more About $5,000

    Dedication Level:
    You and five friends will enjoy a Nineteenth Century Dinner in Danville, Kentucky. Then all six of you will take part in a personal tour with the author and staff of the McDowell House and Museum, where the surgery occurred. (You are responsible for all costs getting to and from Danville, Kentucky, including lodging and food.) A DVD video tour led by the author, covering those places most important in Jane's life, including her family home, the trail she rode to Danville, Kentucky, the McDowell House, where the surgery took place, and the cemetery where Jane is buried, six hard bound copies of the book with original Jane Todd Crawford book markers, personal inscriptions, your name on the Dedication page of the book, and an audio CD of the book, read by the author. Also, one framed 16" x 20" Charcoal gravestone rubbing from Jane's original stone, a 24" x 36" poster, and a THANK YOU on the Jane Todd Crawford Facebook page.

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Limited 0 backers
    $
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  12. Select this reward

    Pledge $10,000 About $10,000

    Saint Level:
    Meet me in Danville, Kentucky for an amazing two day adventure for you and seven of your friends. Enjoy a chartered bus tour to where Jane lived in Boyle County, Kentucky. We'll follow her trail to Danville and enjoy a Nineteenth Century Dinner for all eight of you. There will also be a personal tour with the author and staff of the McDowell House and Museum, where the surgery occurred. (You are responsible for all costs getting to and from Danville, Kentucky, including lodging and food.) When your excursion is over, you'll have a DVD copy of your two-day adventure to enjoy, along with eight hard bound copies of the book with original Jane Todd Crawford book markers, personal inscriptions, your name and photo on the Saint page of the book, and an audio CD of the book, read by the author. Also, one framed 16" x 20" Charcoal gravestone rubbing from Jane's original stone, a 24" x 36" poster and a THANK YOU on Jane Todd Crawford Facebook page.

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Limited 0 backers
    $
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  13. Select this reward

    Pledge $10,000 About $10,000

    A special bonus reward, could be great for a Company or Business - I will travel to a location of your choice, within the U.S., (outside of the U.S., you pre-pay travel expenses) to give a 60 minute presentation on Jane Todd Crawford, her life and the journey I undertook to write this book. I’ll share stories, photos, and videos about my most amazing finds, my most surprising discoveries, and how it all came about. Plus, you will receive one hard bound copy of the book for each attendee with original Jane Todd Crawford book markers, author signature and personal inscriptions, your organization name and photo on the Saint page of the book. Also, three framed 16" x 20" Charcoal gravestone rubbing from Jane's original stone, ten 24" x 36" posters, 5 audio CD's of the book, read by the author, and a THANK YOU on Jane Todd Crawford Facebook page.

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    0 backers
    $
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.

Funding period

- (40 days)