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100 years ago - 1918


I've been trying to make it a point every New Year to learn a little more about what happened 100 years ago.

For 1918, the story of the flu was a "highlight," almost overshadowing the end to WWI.

~~~~~~~~~~

The 1918 flu pandemic (January 1918 – December 1920) was an unusually deadly influenza pandemic, the first of the two pandemics involving H1N1 influenza virus. It infected 500 million people around the world, including remote Pacific islands and the Arctic, and resulted in the deaths of 50 to 100 million (three to five percent of the world's population), making it one of the deadliest natural disasters in human history.

~~

Hypotheses about source

The site of the very first confirmed outbreak was at Camp Funston, Fort Riley, Kansas, then a military training facility preparing American troops for involvement in World War I. The first victim diagnosed with the new strain of flu on Monday, March 11, 1918, was mess cook Private Albert Gitchell. Historian Alfred W. Crosby recorded that the flu originated in Kansas, and popular writer John Barry echoed Crosby in describing Haskell County, Kansas, as the point of origin, although already in the fall of 1917 there had been a first wave in at least 14 US military camps.

In contrast, investigative work in 1999 by a British team led by virologist John Oxford of St Bartholomew's Hospital and the Royal London Hospital identified the major troop staging and hospital camp in Étaples, France, as being the center of the 1918 flu pandemic. In the winter of 1917, military pathologists reported the onset of a new disease with high mortality that they later recognized as the Spanish flu. The overcrowded camp was an ideal site for the spreading of a respiratory virus with 100,000 soldiers in transit every day; a crowded hospital with thousands of victims of chemical gases where sick and wounded stayed together; as well as live piggery in the camp and live poultry in the nearby villages. These researchers postulated that a significant precursor virus, harbored in birds, mutated so it could migrate to pigs that were kept near the front.

Earlier hypotheses of the epidemic's origin have varied. Some hypothesized the flu originated in East Asia. Claude Hannoun, the leading expert on the 1918 flu for the Pasteur Institute, asserted the former virus was likely to have come from China, mutating in the United States near Boston and spreading to Brest, France, Europe's battlefields, Europe, and the world using Allied soldiers and sailors as main spreaders. He considered several other hypotheses of origin, such as Spain, Kansas, and Brest, as being possible, but not likely.

Political scientist Andrew Price-Smith published data from the Austrian archives suggesting the influenza had earlier origins, beginning in Austria in the spring of 1917.

In 2014, historian Mark Humphries of Canada's Memorial University of Newfoundland stated that newly unearthed records confirmed that one of the side stories of the war, the mobilization of 96,000 Chinese laborers to work behind the British and French lines on World War I's western front, might have been the source of the pandemic. In the report, Humphries found archival evidence that a respiratory illness that struck northern China in November 1917 was identified a year later by Chinese health officials as identical to the Spanish flu. However, a report published in 2016 in the Journal of the Chinese Medical Association found no evidence that the 1918 virus was imported to Europe from Chinese and Southeast Asian soldiers and workers. In fact, it found evidence that the virus had been circulating in the European armies for months and potentially years before the 1918 pandemic.

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~~~~~~~~~

"World History Project" -
]What Happened in 1918


12/26/2017, 8:34 pm Link to this post PM birdcharm Blog
 
Yobbo Profile
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Re: 100 years ago - 1918


The start of a rotten war was being processed.
12/26/2017, 11:00 pm Link to this post PM Yobbo
 
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Re: 100 years ago - 1918


Just the beginning of world transit disease by mass human intercontinental movement and contact. We live on the edge everyday where a runaway strain of some virus could be transported to all corners of the world in a matter of hours from a single starting point and no one seems to see that probability.
12/27/2017, 1:41 pm Link to this post PM cooter50 Blog
 
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Re: 100 years ago - 1918


The beginning was earlier when white men came to North America, many millions died from their diseases.
12/27/2017, 6:19 pm Link to this post PM katie5445 Blog
 
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Re: 100 years ago - 1918


quote:

Yobbo wrote:
The start of a rotten war was being processed.



"Substantial evidence suggests the existence of an ambitious biological warfare program in Germany during World War I."

(I will note source on subsequent post.)
12/27/2017, 8:49 pm Link to this post PM birdcharm Blog
 
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Re: 100 years ago - 1918


quote:

katie5445 wrote:

The beginning was earlier when white men came to North America, many millions died from their diseases.



Awful.

"... during the French-Indian War (1754–1767), Sir Jeffrey Amherst, the commander of the British forces in North America, suggested the deliberate use of smallpox to diminish the native Indian population hostile to the British. An outbreak of smallpox in Fort Pitt led to a significant generation of fomites and provided Amherst with the means to execute his plan. On June 24, 1763, Captain Ecuyer, one of Amherst's subordinate officers, provided the Native Americans with smallpox-laden blankets from the smallpox hospital. He recorded in his journal: “I hope it will have the desired effect”. As a result, a large outbreak of smallpox occurred among the Indian tribes in the Ohio River Valley. Again, it has to be recognized that several other contacts between European colonists and Native Americans contributed to such epidemics, which had been occurring for over 200 years. In addition, the transmission of smallpox by fomites was inefficient compared with respiratory droplet transmission."


]Source
Biological warfare and bioterrorism: a historical review


12/27/2017, 8:53 pm Link to this post PM birdcharm Blog
 
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Re: 100 years ago - 1918


And still nothing to chastise the comment I made. No INTENTIONAL distribution just the accidental distribution as due to the massive amount of population always in transit, sets up the entire globe, not just the local sites/regions as shown for catastrophe.
12/27/2017, 9:35 pm Link to this post PM cooter50 Blog
 
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Re: 100 years ago - 1918


There are several instances of intentionally spreading disease.
12/27/2017, 9:41 pm Link to this post PM katie5445 Blog
 
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Re: 100 years ago - 1918


The over use of antibiotics is not a good practice. Mutated strains of viruses could find their way across the globe by whatever means, imo.



Last edited by birdcharm, 12/27/2017, 10:49 pm
12/27/2017, 10:47 pm Link to this post PM birdcharm Blog
 
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Re: 100 years ago - 1918


Anyone who has an MD that uses an abx for every little thing, ought to find a new doctor, that practice ended a couple decades ago. My grand son at 15 has had one abx and my grand daughter at 13, two times. Doctors that my family and I attend all have posters, that come down to, don't be begging for an abx, you won't get one unless I said it is needed, the kids peds doctor also suggests you might want to go somewhere else.
12/28/2017, 12:49 am Link to this post PM katie5445 Blog
 
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Re: 100 years ago - 1918


It's good to hear that U.S. doctors are not prescribing as many, but I've read that they are still be used more than they should be in Europe or other countries, which is still a problem.

12/28/2017, 3:03 am Link to this post PM birdcharm Blog
 
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Re: 100 years ago - 1918


I tried to find something but all I found was articles chastising just about everyone for overuse. I noted where in the US 30% are not needed, most for ear infections and sinusitis. Before I stopped working they had quit doing that. I wonder if it is dependent on the area, we have a medical school and quite a few hospitals, clinics, etc. compared to most who have far less for the same population. It may make a difference, those fresh out of school often tend to stay and youth brings in new ideas.
12/28/2017, 3:49 am Link to this post PM katie5445 Blog
 
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Re: 100 years ago - 1918


Our MD and his NP staff do not routinely treat with abx, the preference is for rest, fluids and the considered norm of let the virus run and treat symptoms for comfort as any virus will have to run its course where abx do little to nothing. Has to have severe complications or side issues/infections due to reduced immune response to warrant abx script.
12/28/2017, 10:01 am Link to this post PM cooter50 Blog
 


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