exploring the history of pregnancy, birth, and infant care around the world.

Beatrice Baxter Ruyl was a progressive, well-educated woman who came of age at the turn of the 20th century. She worked as an illustrator and author, focusing on depictions of the Zuni Pueblo, but she is best recognized as the subject of breastfeeding photography by Gertrude Kasebier in the early 1900’s.

In 1913, breastfeeding was highly recommended by medical professionals due to the high infant mortality associated with cow milk substitutes. But how were new mothers educated about breastfeeding? The recommendations might surprise you. Boracic acid, anyone?