Dr. William Henry Pickett

Dr. William Henry Pickett (1876-1949) was born in Lexington, KY to Henry and Susan (Goggins) Pickett. According to the 1880 Federal Census, he was an only child, and his father was working as a tailor. Pickett was a graduate of Simmons College of Kentucky and did graduate work at Cleveland Polytechnical Clinic and Rush Medical School in Chicago. He graduated from the old Louisville National Medical College in 1898. On June 27, 1901, Pickett married Lucy Bell Steward, daughter of William H. and Mamie (Lee) Steward (who are both featured this month), and together they had one child: Steward. In 1908, Pickett was a member of the National Negro-American Political League of Kentucky and was one of the delegates sent to the Negro-American National Conference that year. His wife, Lucy, was also active in politics. In 1923 and 1932, she was a delegate sent to the Republican State Convention. Pickett was a member of the Central Louisville Health Center, which provided health services to the vast majority of Louisville’s African Americans. Picket practiced medicine on S. Preston Street for 51 years. His last known office was located at 315 S. Preston Street, which is now the location of I-65. Blanton and his family lived at 528 E. Jacob Street and then at 421 E. Chestnut Street. Pickett was a member of the Fifth Street Baptist Church as well as Alpha Phi Alpha fraternity. He was also president of the American Volleyball Association. Dr. Pickett died on June 24, 1949 from lung cancer. He and Lucy were buried in the Steward family plot in Eastern Cemetery. Photo of Pickett is from a June 2, 1949 “Courier-Journal” article.