"One Blood traces the life of the famous black scientist and surgeon Dr. Charles Drew and the well-known legend about his death. On April 1, 1950, Drew, then forty-five years old, died after an auto accident in rural North Carolina. Within hours, rumors spread: he had bled to death because a whites-only hospital refused to treat him. The terrible irony that helped to fuel the rumor was that Drew had done pioneering research on the use of blood plasma and had helped set up the first American Red Cross blood bank on the eve of World War II. So the story grew that the man who had saved so many lives through his scientific work with blood had been refused blood when he needed it - only because of his race." "Drew was in fact treated in the emergency room of the small, segregated Alamance General Hospital. Two white surgeons worked hard to save his life, but his wounds were so profound that he died after about an hour. Though the tale is not true and his colleagues and family tried repeatedly to stop it, the Charles Drew legend is repeated to this day in newspaper and magazine articles, on radio and television shows, in churches, in schools, and at social and political gatherings all over the country." "Spencie Love explores in depth Drew's life, character, and achievements in order to explain the origins of the legend. Both oral testimony and extensive written documentation reveal that in a generic sense, the legend is true: throughout the first half of the twentieth century, African Americans were turned away at hospital doors, either because the hospitals were whites-only or because the "black beds" were full." "Providing a haunting parallel to Drew's life, Love describes the emblematic fate of Maltheus R. Avery, a young black World War II veteran who died after an auto accident that occurred in the same year and the same county that Drew's did, after being refused treatment at nearby Duke Hospital."--Jacket.