At first, many residents believed it was simply a common autumnal illness. African Americans worked tirelessly with the sick and dying as nurses, cart drivers, coffin makers, and grave diggers. The sport of indoor soccer was new on the national scene, but had a minor history in Philadelphia, where the defunct Philadelphia Atoms of the North … Thomas Jefferson observed: "Everybody who can, is fleeing from the city, and the panic of the country people is likely to add famine to the disease." Soon after, the governor, Thomas Mifflin, “embraced both ideas called for greater civic cleanliness and stricter quarantines and inspection of incoming vessels” as Bob Arnebeck noted. James Gathany / Centers for Disease Control, Conflict of Interest and Confidentiality Statement, A Few Good Women Social Studies Curriculum, Philadelphia Under Siege: The Yellow Fever of 1793, http://www.baltimorebasilica.org/index.php?page=benjamin-henry-latrobe>, http://www.nps.gov/history/history/online_books/declaration/bio42.htm>, http://pds.lib.harvard.edu/pds/view/7374219>, http://pds.lib.harvard.edu/pds/view/7319084>, http://pds.lib.harvard.edu/pds/view/7468293>, http://pds.lib.harvard.edu/pds/view/6483355>. In a matter of days, 600 sailors had the virus. Philadelphia was one of the hardest-hit US cities. 502 Paterno Library In response to his groundbreaking theory on the cause of yellow fever, Carlos Finlay was called a "crank" and a "crazy old man." Dr. Benjamin Rush, one of the city's most prominent physicians and a signer of the Declaration of Independence, was called to the home of Dr. Hugh Hodge on August 5. Details http://collection1.libraries.psu.edu/cdm4/document.php?CISOROOT=/digital... http://pds.lib.harvard.edu/pds/view/6483213>, http://pds.lib.harvard.edu/pds/view/6486492>, http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/aia/part3/3p1590.html>, http://sortor.com/benjamin_rush/source/yellow_fever_philly_1793.html>, Penn State Latrobe’s waterworks design removed water from the Schuylkill River by a steam-engine pump which pumped the water to a central pump house. Jones and Allen observed, “A woman died, we were sent for to bury her, on our going into the house and taking the coffin in, a dear little innocent accosted us with, mamma is asleep, don’t wake her; but when she saw us put her in the coffin, the distress of the child was so great, that it almost overcame us; when she demanded why we put her mamma in the box? In 1799, Benjamin Latrobe, Father of American Architecture, was hired to design and construct Philadelphia’s first waterworks and the first water system in the United States. The disease caused an estimated 5,000 deaths that year in Philadelphia, about a tenth of the residents of the city and its suburbs. In 1900, Lillian Rhoades, author of The Story of Philadelphia commented that, “the hearse and the doctor’s [carriage] were the sole vehicles on the street.” She also stated, “The hospitals were in a horrible condition; nurses could not be had at any price: to go into a house in which nearly every bed contained a dead body, and the floors reeked with filth, was courting death in its most dreadful form.”, In the history of Pennsylvania, no city has ever faced its own mortality to the extent that Philadelphia suffered under the Yellow Fever affliction. What could cause such a devastating epidemic to occur on Pennsylvania soil? Other factors contributed to the flu's spread, including high population and poor working and living conditions. As US troops came home from World War I, cases popped up in cities like Boston. The number of deaths changed from “ten victims a day in August to one hundred a day in October” and “sudden exit was of common occurrence” as depicted by Samuel Breck. By 1878, conditions were ripe for a powerful epidemic of yellow fever in the Mississippi Valley. Peacetime brought a boom of trade as improved rail service and shipping allowed people and goods — as well as disease — to travel easily in the united nation. The virus swept the world between 1918 and 1919. On August 21, he told Mayor Matthew Clarkson that unsanitary conditions in the bustling city were causing a yellow fever epidemic. Hope became dismal. The Yellow Fever epidemic of 1793 forever changed Philadelphia. "This deadly example shows the benefit of canceling mass gatherings and employing social distancing measures during pandemics," the CDC said. Streets became empty as business halted. More than 12,000 people died in six weeks, with about 47,000 reported cases, according to UPenn. By October 1, there were 635 new cases in Philadelphia, according to UPenn. Over the next two weeks, Rush saw many more patients with the same symptoms, several of whom also died. The answer is yes. Details Rush or Absalom Jones to fight the Yellow Fever were glorified heroes. Serving the Afflicted The prominent doctor of the time, Benjamin Rush, quickly identified the illness as Yellow Fever as more fell victim to its grasp. He often gave calomel, a mercury compound, as a method to purge the bowels. He later wrote several books on his experience with Yellow Fever. Water from the central pump house surged with the power to wash streets and docks.
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