Thursday, February 27, 2020

Smallpox and Influenza Returned in February of 1920; City Hospitals Break Ground for New Buildings

Back in the winter of 1920, Salem faced a resurgence of two infectious diseases. The flu was not as intense as the bout of 1918-1919, either in quantity or in deadliness, but it was still more significant than "average" flu seasons in previous years. There was also an outbreak of smallpox, and the City initiated a vaccination campaign.

Smallpox prompts vaccination campaign
February 6th, 1920

Both influenza and smallpox on the increase
2000 residents vaccinated
February 10th, 1920

Quarantine a joke? - February 17th, 1920

Getting more serious about quarantine
February 21st, 1920

Short-handed at State offices - February 22nd, 1920

School closing averted
February 27th, 1920
See all previous notes on the influenza pandemic of 1918 and its sequels, especially "Creeping Doom: The First Influenza Headlines of 1918" and "100 Years Ago: No School, No Dance, No Movies - Influenza's Damper on Public Space and Association."

Meanwhile, both hospitals, on Center Street by the State Hospital and on Winter Street at the existing Hospital site, broke ground in February also on new buildings. McKinley School was still operating as a temporary hospital, but the District planned to start school there again in September of 1920.

Rendering for Deaconess Hospital on Winter Street
February 14th, 1920

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