An account of the deadly influenza epidemic of 1918, which took the lives of millions of people around the world, examines its causes, its impact on early twentieth-century society, and the lasting implications of the crisis.
#1 New York Times bestseller “Barry will teach you almost everything you need to know about one of the deadliest outbreaks in human history.”—Bill Gates, GatesNotes.com "Monumental... an authoritative and disturbing morality tale."—Chicago Tribune The strongest weapon against pandemic is the truth. Read why in the definitive account of the 1918 Flu Epidemic. Magisterial in its breadth of perspective and depth of research, The Great Influenza provides us with a precise and sobering model as we confront the epidemics looming on our own horizon. As Barry concludes, "The final lesson of 1918, a simple one yet one most difficult to execute, is that...those in authority must retain the public's trust. The way to do that is to distort nothing, to put the best face on nothing, to try to manipulate no one. Lincoln said that first, and best. A leader must make whatever horror exists concrete. Only then will people be able to break it apart." At the height of World War I, history’s most lethal influenza virus erupted in an army camp in Kansas, moved east with American troops, then exploded, killing as many as 100 million people worldwide. It killed more people in twenty-four months than AIDS killed in twenty-four years, more in a year than the Black Death killed in a century. But this was not the Middle Ages, and 1918 marked the first collision of science and epidemic disease.
The Story of the Great Influenza Pandemic of 1918 and the Search for the Virus That Caused It
Author: Gina Kolata
Pubpsher: Farrar, Straus and Giroux
Category: Social Science
The fascinating, true story of the world's deadliest disease. In 1918, the Great Flu Epidemic felled the young and healthy virtually overnight. An estimated forty million people died as the epidemic raged. Children were left orphaned and families were devastated. As many American soldiers were killed by the 1918 flu as were killed in battle during World War I. And no area of the globe was safe. Eskimos living in remote outposts in the frozen tundra were sickened and killed by the flu in such numbers that entire villages were wiped out. Scientists have recently rediscovered shards of the flu virus frozen in Alaska and preserved in scraps of tissue in a government warehouse. Gina Kolata, an acclaimed reporter for The New York Times, unravels the mystery of this lethal virus with the high drama of a great adventure story. Delving into the history of the flu and previous epidemics, detailing the science and the latest understanding of this mortal disease, Kolata addresses the prospects for a great epidemic recurring, and, most important, what can be done to prevent it.
In 1918, a devastating world-wide influenza epidemic hit the United States. Killing over 600,000 Americans and causing the national death rate to jump 30% in a single year, the outbreak obstructed the country's participation in World War I and imposed terrible challenges on communities across the United States. This epidemic provides an ideal lens for understanding the history of infectious disease in the United States. The Flu Epidemic of 1918 examines the impact of the outbreak on health, medicine, government, and individual people's lives, and also explores the puzzle of Americans' decades-long silence about the experience once it was over. In a concise narrative bolstered by primary sources including newspaper articles, eye-witness accounts, and government reports, Sandra Opdycke provides undergraduates with an unforgettable introduction to the 1918 epidemic and its after-effects. Critical Moments in American History is a series of short texts designed to familiarize students with events or issues critical to the American experience. Through the use of narrative and primary documents, these books help instructors deconstruct an important moment in American history with the help of timelines, glossaries, textboxes, and a robust companion website.
Natural, Technological, and Societal Disasters in the Volunteer State
Author: Allen R. Coggins
Pubpsher: Univ. of Tennessee Press
Category: Social Science
A one-of-a-kind reference book, Tennessee Tragedies examines a wide variety of disasters that have occurred in the Volunteer State over the past several centuries. Intended for both general readers and emergency management professionals, it covers natural disasters such as floods, tornadoes, and earthquakes; technological events such as explosions, transportation wrecks, and structure fires; and societal incidents including labor strikes, political violence, lynchings, and other hate crimes. At the center of the book are descriptive accounts of 150 of the state’s most severe events. These range from smallpox epidemics in the eighteenth century to the epic floods of 1936–37, from the Sultana riverboat disaster of 1865 (the worst inland marine accident in U.S. history) to the 1968 assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Included as well are stories of plane crashes, train wrecks, droughts, economic panics, and race riots. An extensive chronology provides further details on more than 900 incidents, the most complete listing ever compiled for a single state. The book’s introduction examines topics that include our fascination with such tragedies; major causes of death, injury, and destruction; and the daunting problems of producing accurate accountings of a disaster’s effects, whether in numbers of dead and injured or of economic impact. Among the other features are a comprehensive glossary that defines various technical terms and concepts and tables illustrating earthquake, drought, disease, and tornado intensity scales. A work of great historical interest that brings together for the first time an impressive array of information,Tennessee Tragedies will prove exceptionally useful for those who must respond to inevitable future disasters.
In the dying months of World War I, Spanish flu suddenly overwhelmed the world, killing between 50 and 100 million people. German soldiers termed it Blitzkatarrh, British soldiers called it Flanders Grippe, but globally the pandemic gained the notorious title of 'Spanish Flu'. Nowhere escaped this common enemy: in Britain, 250,000 people died, in the United States it was 750,000, five times its total military fatalities in the war, while European deaths reached over two million. The numbers are staggering. And yet at the time, news of the danger was suppressed for fear of impacting war-time morale. Even today these figures are shocking to many - the war still hiding this terrifying menace in its shadow. And behind the numbers are human lives, stories of those who suffered and fought it - in the hospitals and laboratories. Catharine Arnold traces the course of the disease, its origins and progress, across the globe via these remarkable people. Some are well known to us, like British Prime Minister David Lloyd George, US President Woodrow Wilson, and writers Robert Graves and Vera Brittain, but many more are unknown. They are the doughboys from the US, gold miners in South Africa, schoolgirls in Great Britain and many others. Published 100 years after the most devastating pandemic in world history, Pandemic 1918 uses previously unpublished records, memoirs, diaries and government publications to uncover the human story of 1918.
The Journal of the Civil War Era Volume 4, Number 1 March 2014 TABLE OF CONTENTS Articles Nicholas Marshall The Great Exaggeration: Death and the Civil War Sarah Bischoff Paulus America's Long Eulogy for Compromise: Henry Clay and American Politics, 1854-58 Ted Maris-Wolf "Of Blood and Treasure": Recaptive Africans and the Politics of Slave Trade Suppression Review Essay W. Caleb McDaniel The Bonds and Boundaries of Antislavery Book Reviews Books Received Professional Notes Craig A. Warren Lincoln's Body: The President in Popular Films of the Sesquicentennial Notes on Contributors
At the turn of the twentieth century, smallpox claimed the lives of two million people per year. By 1979, the disease had been eradicated and victory was declared across the globe. Yet the story of smallpox remains the exception, as today a host of deadly contagions, from polio to AIDS, continue to threaten human health around the world. Spanning three centuries, The End of Plagues weaves together the discovery of vaccination, the birth and growth of immunology, and the fight to eradicate the world's most feared diseases. From Edward Jenner's discovery of vaccination in 1796, to the early nineteenth-century foundling voyages in which chains of orphans, vaccinated one by one, were sent to colonies around the globe, to the development of polio vaccines and the stockpiling of smallpox as a biological weapon in the Cold War, world-renown immunologist John Rhodes charts our fight against these plagues, and shows how vaccinations gave humanity the upper hand. Today, aid groups including the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and the World Health Organization have made the eradication of polio a priority, and Rhodes takes us behind the scenes to witness how soon we may be celebrating the eradication of polio.