Archive for the ‘Quarantine’ Category


Black Diptheria at Stanhope

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The Fort Dodge Messenger: Aug. 13, 1904

Black Diphtheria at Stanhope

Dread Disease Made its Appearance There Some Time Ago

Many People Were Exposed

Malady Was at First Pronounced Tonsillitis and Many People Visited the Afflicted Homes, Exposing Themselves to the Disease

The town of Stanhope, a few miles south of Webster City, is in a high state of terrified anxiety over the appearance of several cases of black diphtheria, from which three deaths have already resulted. It is reported new cases are breaking out with terrible regularity and that many exposures have occurred thruout (sic) the town.

Every effort is now being made by the terrified citizens to put a stop to the spread of the malady, and it is hoped that from now on there will be no more eposures (sic). The disease is stated to be the most malignant type of that most dreaded of all the ills of childhood, black diphtheria.

The malady has not attacked children exclusively, but in one or two instances grown people have been infected.

Reports from the Leonard Hill home today indicates that Mr. Hill who is suffering from the disease, is no worse but appears to be holding his own. Little Mildred, who was buried Sunday last was the last of the Hill children, which fact makes the case particularly sad and elicits the sympathy of all.

It is feared that unless the officials in Stratford and Stanhope exercise the strictest quarantine and care in families who have the disease or have been exposed to it, that it will spread rapidly. It appears that when the disease first made its appearance in the Leonard Hill family it was pronounced tonsilitis (sic). Neighbors and other friends went in and out of the home in a very free manner. Of course all these have been exposed to the black diphtheria and if the authorities are to protect the people from an epidemic of diphtheria all persons who have been exposed should be promptly put under quarantine and kep there until it develops whether or not they have the disease. Black diphtheria is not a disease to be trifled with and the health of the community demands that all quarantine laws be strictly enforced regardless of how many or how prominent the people who may have been exposed to it.

Besides the little Chipman girl the daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Milburn is also suffering with the disease.


Small Pox Appears in the City

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The Fort Dodge Messenger: Jan. 7, 1907

Small Pox Appears in the City

Two Cases are Under Quarantine – Mayor Issues Warning to People.

Two cases of small pox have appeared in the city. One is at the residence of Grover Harris at 316 South 5th street where Mr. Harris is ill with the malady. The other is on North 7th street where Frank Devore a black smith employed at the Dan Noonan shop is confined.

Both cases were promptly placed under quarantine by city physician Mulroney, who pronounces them both of light form and not likely to become dangerous.

Neither of the afflicted parties have an idea as to where they contracted the disease. Sioux City has one hundred and twenty-five cases and it is thought probably that it came here from that city in some manner.

Mayor Bennett, desiring to warn the people says: “All should take very precaution to prevent the spread of contagious disease. Physicians inform me that soft weather like this makes it much more likely to spread. On the first appearance of sickness that gives indication of turning into scarlet fever, small pox or any other infectious sickness do not hesitate to call the city physician. If quarantine is promptly enforced the danger is small, whereas if the disease is let run three or four days it is likely to be transmitted to others.”

(Editor’s note: There was a related brief on another page of the same edition of the paper, in the “What They Say” section, which follows. It appears he is referring to the home of Frank Devore.)

“The other day I noticed a milk wagon drive up in front of a home on north 7th street where a family is quarantined for small pox. The milkman poured out a quantity of milk into the pitcher brought out to him, looked at it, then evidently thinking he had given too much, poured part of it back from the pitcher into the big can from which he supplies all his customers. He drove on then to peddle milk from that same big can all over town. It looks as if that were a pretty good way to spread disease in case there were any germs on the pitcher, for milk is said to be the worst medium for carrying germs known.”

-Robert M. Wilson


More Than Their Share of Misfortune

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The Fort Dodge Messenger: Dec. 24, 1903

Nore (sic) Tham (sic) Their Share of Misfortune

Home of W.H. Newsum, on Twelfth Avenue South, is the Scene of Many Troubles.

Misfortune seems to shadow the home of Mr. and Mrs. W.H. Newsum, at 622 Twelfth avenue south. Some time ago their little daughter was taken ill with scarlet fever. But a few days after the quarantine was raised, the same child was again quarantined, this time for diphtheria. A few days ago their little son met with a serious accident by falling from a horse, the most severe of his injuries being a fractured skull. Meanwhile the quarantine was lifted from the home. Wednesday quarantine was again established, another child being ill with diphtheria.


Doctor Kime Says Close the Schools

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The Fort Dodge Messenger: Dec. 2, 1903

Doctor Kime Says Close the Schools

Spread of Diphtheria Cannot be Stopped Otherwise, He Says.

Record of All the Cases

Weakness in the Quarantine Methods Shown by Increase in Cases.

The continuance of the diphtheria epidemic in Fort Dodge has given an uneasy feeling to all parents that something is wrong in the handling of the cases somewhere, the rigidity of the quarantines established being suspected chiefly. It is a difficult matter to get people to appreciate the responsibility that all owe to the public in preventing the spread of contagion. The rules of the health officers, if followed strictly, would soon stop the spread of diphtheria but while the general public is careless and indifferent it is very likely that with the start given in the last three months there will be more cases and perhaps a good many more. Doctor Kime has investigated the record of cases of diphtheria which have already occurred and believes that there is more danger of contagion from keeping the schools open than in any other way. In fact he says that the schools must be closes or the situation will become very serious. His communication given below, will be read with general interest.

Editor Messenger: – The true situation as to diphtheria in the city at the present time is this:

During September, beginning September 7, there were three cases.

During the month of October there were sixteen cases.

During the month of November, there were twenty-six cases.

On the first day of December, three new cases were quarantined.

This makes a total of forty-eight cases since September 7. Of these, seven have died, or at the rate of about fifteen per hundred cases. There are now under quarantine twenty-three cases, of these perhaps three or four will die. The total mortality of the present epidemic, including those that will probably die among those now sick will be in the neighborhood of twenty per cent.

During the past ten days, fourteen new cases have been quarantined. If this rate holds good for December, as it probably will, the total for December will be forty-five. If the pace set by the first day of December is carried out for the entire month, as it will not (missing word) likely to be, the month of December will show ninety new cases.

(Editor’s note: There was more to the article, a list of cases from Sept. 7, 1903, to the time of the article.)

The Fort Dodge Messenger: Dec. 1, 1903

Diphtheria Causes Anxiety

Spread of Disease Rapid During Past Few Days

Five New Cases Reported at the City Hall Today – Schools May Be Fumigated Saturday.

Five new cases of diphtheria were reported on the bulletin board at the city hall today. Quarantine was established at the following homes:

Nels Greber, 235 South Thirteenth street, West Fort Dodge.

Gotleib Proeschold, 427 Third avenue south.

Mrs. J.W. Flaherty, 1726 Fifth avenue south.

H.M. Limm, 1216 Eleventh avenue south.

The Kirkpatrick home, 1227 Fifth avenue south.

The rapid spread of the disease has again attracted the attention of physicians, the health authorities and the public in general. The character of the quartine (sic) maintained on homes where the disease exists has not been allowed to relax and so far the health authorities can give no reason for the recent unexpected spread when the disease was thought to be well in  hand. Some physicians say that while diphtheria is not what is usually termed a contagious disease it is nevertheless more contagious than has been supposed.

It is not unlikely that Saturday all the schools of the city will be fumigated and allowed to be aired the following day.

(Editor’s note: Diphtheria was the cause of death of my great-grandmother’s father and sister, and quite likely her two brothers as well, in 1879. All four died in about a three-week period. It is part of the recommended immunization schedule for children in the U.S. and currently there are only about five cases a year. However, this is one of those shots you have to renew about every 10 years, so if you haven’t had one in that time, you might want to see your doctor.)


Dread Smallpox Appears Near Vincent

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The Fort Dodge Messenger: March 31, 1903

Dread Smallpox Appears Near Vincent

John Simon and Family, Five in All, Have Been Closely Quarantined.

Vincent, March 31 – Vincent people are greatly agitated over the breaking out of two genuine small pox cases at the John Simon Home one half mile south and three miles east of that place.

Mr. and Mrs. Simon and son Joseph and daughter Edith and Stora have all broken out with the malady. The place has been quarantined, but many of the neighbors and some Vincent people are said to have visited at the Simon place before it was discovered that the Simons were stricken with the dreaded disease. As practically all Vincent people have been vaccinated many cases of the genuine smallpox cannot break out.

The Fort Dodge Messenger: March 23, 1904

Measles at Orphans’ Home

An Epidemic of the Malady Exists There.

The Disease Has Been Exceptionally Severe – Pneumonia a Frequent Complication.

An epidemic of measles in a most violent form has broken out among the babies at the German Lutheran Orphans’ home on Sixth avenue north, and one of the little ones lies at death’s door with complications resulting from the disease.

The malady appeared at the home some time ago, and at the present time every baby in the institution is seriously ill with the complaint. The disease has been exceptionally severe, and in every case has left the little on a victim to some complication or other. Pneumonia is the most common of these complications, while in some of the children, diseases of the middle ear are the after effects.

In the case of the child  which is at present in the worst condition, and which will undoubtedly die, the measles first became complicated with pneumonia, and later, in spite of all that medical science and the best of care could do, farther complications set in and the child has meningitis in addition to measles and pneumonia.

The disease as it has appeared at the home is said to be the most violent nature possible to the malady, being the worst that has appeared in the city for some years. There is, however, no danger of a spread of the disease, as the home is kept thoroughly isolated by quarantine.


A Deadly Disease at Brushy

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The Fort Dodge Messenger: March 17, 1906

A Deadly Disease at Brushy

Anthrax Breaks Out Among Animals on Pratt Farm.

Is Contagious Disease Deadly to both Animals and Man – Place is Quarantined.

On being called to the farm of Charles Pratt at Brushy, Thursday afternoon by the news that a strange disease had broken out among the animals on the farm, Dr. Baughman of this city found the malady to be anthrax, a deadly contagious disease which attacks both animals and human beings. Already a number of animals have died from its effects.

Dr. Baughman, who is assistant state veterinarian took the case in hand at once and has imposed a strict quarantine n the place. All stock on the farm will be confined to it until it is certain that the disease has been stamped out. The sheds, pens, etc., will be torn down either placed in a strong antiseptic solution or burned and the dead animals will be burned in lime to prevent the disease germs from again coming to the surface.

The malady appeared on the same place some fifteen or sixteen years ago, and it is supposed that it reappeared through being brought to the surface by earth worms. It attacks those who are taken with it in the form of a malignant ulcer which spreads rapidly and soon brings death. There are practically no symptoms to give warning of the approach of the disease. The first that the farmer knows of it when he finds the dead animals which have succumbed to it.