Lottie Cornella Isbell Blake was born June 10, 1876, in
Appomattox Court House, Virginia, in the home of her maternal grandfather, John
Diuguid, a free man whose home was next to the famous Isbell Plantation where General
Lee surrendered to General Grant, thus ending the Civil War.
high school in 1894 she pursued a teacher’s course, completing this training in
1896. It was in this same year that she
became a member of the Seventh-day Adventist Church. It was her zeal to become a missionary nurse
that led her to Battle Creek, Michigan, and the famous Battle Creek Sanitarium,
where the noted physician, Dr. John Harvey Kellogg operated. It was he, who, noticing her scholastic
ability, encouraged her to pursue the medical course.
Her first missionary field led her to the
South where she labored as director of the Rock City Sanitarium at Nashville,
Tennessee (the forerunner of Riverside Hospital & Sanitarium). She was also a practicing physician in
Birmingham, Alabama. It was during this
period that frequent trips were made to Huntsville Oakwood Manual Training
School, now Oakwood University, to serve where she was needed.
After her marriage to David Blake, a
minister, who became a medical doctor, the couple engaged in self-supporting medical
missionary work in Central America and the Caribbean. After 10 years of marriage, her husband died,
leaving his wife with the responsibility of rearing their five children, which she did ably.
In 1975, in her honor, the “Lottie C. Blake
Medical Lectureships” were established at Oakwood University church. On June 10, 1976, Dr. Blake celebrated her
100th birthday. On the
morning of November 16, 1976, she quietly slipped away at the home of her
daughter in Huntsville, Alabama.
leaves to mourn their loss a sister, Mrs. Veola Cox; four daughters: Miss
Frances Blake, Dr. Sarah Blake, Mrs. Louise Neil and Mrs. Alice Brantley; one son,
Thomas Blake; nine grandchildren and 26 great-grandchildren. Perhaps her greatest legacy has been the
inspiration which she has given her family and others to serve mankind as
medical personnel: some of whom were, her husband, Dr. David Blake; an aunt who
was younger than she, Dr. Grace Kimbrough; her daughter, Dr. Sarah K. Blake; a
niece, Dr. Muriel Robinson; a grandson, Dr. Richard Neil; her grandson-in-law,
Dr. James Holmes; and a great-grandson, Dr. Keith Wood.
-"Obituaries," Southern Tidings, March 1977, pg. 26