Jessie Castle La Moreaux (1866-1954)
DDS 1896 University of Michigan
A Girl from Battle Creek
Jessie Castle La Moreaux was the only woman in her 1896 dental class and the 35th woman to graduate from the University of Michigan since the founding of the College of Dental Surgery in 1875.
La Moreaux’s first dental practice was at the Battle Creek Sanitarium in Michigan. At the 1897 dental convention in Battle Creek, another dentist boasted to UM dental professor John Watling that he was the Sanitarium dentist. Watling was delighted to expose the lie saying: one of “our students [has] the position there, on a salary.”
Choosing Dentistry over Marriage
In 1897, La Moreaux followed her sister to Dallas and was the first woman dentist to practice in Texas. Jessie Castle married Frank La Moreaux but the marriage ended, childless, within a year. She never remarried although she kept his name. By 1902, she had relocated to Rockwall, Texas where she practiced until she retired from dentistry in 1917.