Monday, May 25, 2020

The American Influenza Epidemic of 1918: A Digital Encyclopedia

This site contains the stories of the places, the people, and the organizations that battled the American influenza epidemic of 1918-1919.

Niagara Square, with the old Central High School on the left,
used as an emergency hospital during the epidemic.

The section on Buffalo, New York , not far from where I live, includes an essay, a timeline and images. It also mentions my town (Niagara-on-the-Lake) which was hit first.
On September 20, with reports of an influenza epidemic raging at the nearby Niagara-on-the-Lake military facility and news of the disease’s spread throughout the Northeast, Buffalo’s Acting Health Commissioner Dr. Franklin C. Gram (appointed in April when Health Commissioner Dr. Francis Fronczak was commissioned in the Army) asked city physicians to report to the Health Department any and all cases of influenza they encountered. Health Commissioner Gram’s goal was not only to get accurate statistics on the disease in his city, but also to isolate and quarantine all cases and contacts. Thus far, there were no official reports of influenza in Buffalo, but the Health Commissioner expected that to change shortly. He told the public that influenza was a serious disease, and that symptoms should not be dismissed even if mild. To drive the point home, he called influenza a disease as contagious as measles, a malady with which most families had more familiarity.1 Ten days later, Buffalo physicians had reported fifty cases in the city.2 Gram braced himself for the onslaught he knew was coming. More
Via Everlasting Blort 

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