Memorial managed by
the East Point Historical Society Inc.
The first African American Doctor in East Point, Ga. and the Grandfather of Dr. Hamilton Earl "Hamp" Holmes who along with another African American student, Charlayne Hunter desegregated Georgia State University.
East Point, Ga. gained its first black physician on June 1, 1910, when Dr. Hamilton Mayo Holmes moved to the city with his bride of one month, Pattie Lee Reeves Holmes. Dr. Holmes, a graduate of Leonard School of Medicine, Shaw University in Raleigh, North Carolina, had been told of the need for a doctor in the East Point area.
His wife, Pattie Reeves Holmes was a graduate of St. Augustine Nursing School in Raleigh and was one of the founders and a charter member of the National Nurses Association in 1910.
Upon arrival by train to Atlanta and East Point, the couple moved into a house at the corner of Georgia Avenue and Randall St. In 1923, Dr. Holmes and his family moved to Chapel St. (Northside Drive) in Atlanta, where he built a home and space for an office.
Dr. Holmes made the acquaintance of a young pharmacist at a drug store in East Point who recommended him to a white couple in need of medical treatment. However, the law prevented African-Americans from serving whites.
According to his daughter Alice Washington, the white man said, "I don't care about the law,I need some help for my wife." The couple was given directions to Dr. Holmes house on Randall St. Dr. Holmes, being very cautious, repeated the law to the white patient but to no avail, they wanted treatment and Dr. Holmes treated them.
His early rounds were made in a buggy until he purchased a Lincoln around 1922. Wilson Head wrote that when Dr. Holmes called on patients in East Point, it was almost like a festival or celebration.
Dr. Hamilton Holmes was active in organizing the Abram Grant Lodge No. 382, Knights of Pythias on July 5, 1912. This national fraternal order, founded in Washington D.C., in 1864, was active in East Point for several years and included separate lodges for white and black members as well as a junior order.
Pattie Lee Reeves Holmes
1886–1955 (m. 1910)
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