The Influenza Of 1918 Essay

1595 words - 7 pages

After World War I had ended, American citizens celebrated with joy as they welcomed the American soldiers back home. What Americans did not realize was that the end of World War I was just the beginning of a year of devastation. Upon returning home from the fronts, the soldiers were not only welcomed home by the citizens of America, but also introduced a new threat that led to much desolation throughout the American nation. Following the return of the army, reported cases of the flu had significantly risen. The influenza was different from the other illnesses people faced, because it differed genetically from previous influenzas. At first, this was not a concern since physicians had already obtained vaccines and treatments for the flu. What these physicians did not consider was that each year the influenza changes because it becomes resistant to the antibiotics and changes in its genetic marker. This led to the importance of locating the source of the virus. Due to the lack of preparation and knowledge of technology in 1918, the plague was easily transmitted throughout the United States at a rapid speed, threatening the lives of numerous citizens. Because it caused such a widespread of fear and sickness among the American public, it encouraged scientists and physicians to discover a cure to prevent more deaths. Upon searching for the initial cause of the plague and the cure for it, which was critical to avoid spreading and causing further harm, it influenced newer technology to be created helping prevent a similar outbreak in the future.
There are many theories as to how the plague initially began. It is widely believed that the influenza originally started in Asia, since many pandemics prior to 1918 began in the Asian region. Those who believe the flu originated in Asia believe that it started spreading east towards Europe and the rest of the world. While the origins are still unknown, the first known cases of the flu appeared in Brest, France. As more cases surfaced, America and European countries kept quiet of the virus to eliminate fear and chaos among the citizens of those countries, especially since World War I was still occurring. Spain, acting as a neutral state during the war, was the only nation who reported the events of the influenza in their newspapers. As a result of their lack of censorship, the influenza was wrongfully associated with Spain. It was nicknamed “The Spanish Flu” despite not actually originating in Spain. The viral strain arose in America in Haskell, Kansas and was believed that the strain caused an outbreak in a close by army base. It was predicted that the American military men carried the virus into the states and soon spread eastwards. Unlike previous influenzas, the Spanish Flu occurred in three waves. The first wave occurred in the spring of 1918. During this particular wave, it was believed to have spread throughout the United States, Europe, and Asia over a six month period. The spring wave was not...

Find Another Essay On The Influenza of 1918

The 1918 Spanish Influenza Pandemic Essay

1946 words - 8 pages military camp in Kansas where soldiers were trained before being sent around the world to fight. The second wave commenced in three port cities in three countries; this second wave was a deadly evolution of the first wave and began the deadly phase of the pandemic. (The Great Pandemic) The Spanish Influenza has not been seen since the last pandemic ended in 1919. In 1918 the federal government required states and local health departments to

"Flu: The Story of the Great Influenza Pandemic of 1918"by Gina Kolata.

1919 words - 8 pages million people worldwide were killed in the great influenza pandemic of 1918. In spite of the horrific death toll, the flu pandemic of 1918 is often overlooked. Why this is the case, is but one of the many questions that Gina Kolata, a science writer for the New York Times, tries to answer in Flu: The Story of the Great Influenza Pandemic of 1918 and the Search for the Virus That Caused It (Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 1999). This paper is a

The Importance of the Influenza Vaccine

1632 words - 7 pages time was a search for the cure for influenza more frantic than after the devastating effects of the pandemic of 1918. The pandemic killed somewhere between twenty and a hundred million people, making it twenty five times more deadly than the ordinary cough and sneeze flu. The symptoms of this flu were like something straight out of a horror movie: the victim’s facial complexion changed to a dark, brownish purple, the feet turned black, and they

An Evaluation of the Seasonal Influenza Vaccine

2107 words - 8 pages During the frigid winter months, the flu takes ahold of the entire country, constraining it in a cough-ridden, congested grasp until taking its leave in the warm months of spring. Several strains of the influenza virus compose collectively of the flu, and these strains mutate — or alter their genetic composition — as the virus creeps into and out of the people and animals it infects. Throughout the year, researchers and doctors scramble to find

Influenza, Avian Influenza, and the Impacts of Past and Looming Pandemics

1843 words - 7 pages Influenza, Avian Influenza, and the Impacts of Past and Looming Pandemics Avian influenza is a disease that has been wreaking havoc on human populations since the 16th century. With the recent outbreak in 1997 of a new H5N1 avian flu subtype, the world has begun preparing for a pandemic by looking upon its past affects. In the 20th Century, the world witnessed three pandemics in the years of 1918, 1957, and 1968. In 1918 no vaccine

The Origins of the Spanish Flu of 1918

2574 words - 10 pages and Its Times. Ed. Neil Schlager and Josh Lauer. Vol. 2. Detroit: Gale, 2001. U.S. History in Context. Web. 12 Mar. 2014. "Lessons Learned from the 1918–1919 Influenza Pandemic in Minneapolis and St. Paul, Minnesota.” Ott, miles. Association of Schools of Public Health, 2007. Taubenberger JK, Morens DM. 1918 influenza: the mother of all pandemics. Emerg Infect Dis. 2006 Jan. “The Influenza Pandemic of 1918.” Billings, Molly

The Failure of the German Spring Offensive of 1918

2988 words - 12 pages AbstractAfter a continual stalemate in 1916 and 1917 on the Western Front, Germany attempted to break through the deadlock and deliver the fatal blow to the Allies. Why did the Hundred Days Offensive successfully break through the German defenses? The reasons lie in the planning process and the operation process of the German Spring Offensive. Why did the German Spring Offensive of 1918 fail? This question would present the background to the

Henry Ford and the Senatorial Race of 1918

690 words - 3 pages In the early twentieth century a prominent Michigan business man fathered the American automobile industry. This innovative engineer and machinist would revolutionize the world’s manufacturing techniques with the advent of the “moving assembly line” technique for mass production. Henry Ford’s innovations would forever change transportation and American industry. With his acquired wealth and power, Ford turned his head towards politics. In 1918

National Influenza Immunization Program - The Swine Flu of 1976

4026 words - 16 pages the cell as fresh viruses, budding off the plasma membrane of the cell. While Scientists still do not know a great deal about the communicability of influenza, they do know that it can be spread by human-to-human contact, and has some airborne stability. (Silverstein: 59) Specifically, the characteristics of the influenza at Fort Dix was extremely discouraging. First of all, it was very similar to the 1918 swine influenza A pandemic, which

"Assess the impact of Nazism on the Army in the years 1918 - 1945."

1587 words - 6 pages Throughout the period 1918 to 1945, the Army was impacted both positively and negatively through the implementation of Nazism. Between the end of the First World War and the implications placed upon Germany under the signing of the Treaty of Versailles, the Army undertook significant restructure. Throughout both the National Socialist German Labour Party, known as the Nazi Party, and leader Adolf Hitler's rise to power, Hitler deliberately

Can the phrase "Incomplete revolution" be usefully applied to the events of November 1918 in Germany?

2049 words - 8 pages The German Revolution - Incomplete?November and December 1918 in Germany was a time of political turmoil as the masses took to the streets during the chaotic break up of war. Germany went from being a dictatorial Kaiser-Reich to a painfully democratic country in three months. However, it has been said that Germany had an incomplete revolution in 1918 as although there were political changes, economic and social factors were mostly left alone

Similar Essays

The Influenza Pandemic Of 1918 Essay

1078 words - 4 pages The influenza pandemic of 1918 had not only altered the lives of thousands, but the habitual lives of family and work as well. The Spanish Influenza collected more lives than all of the casualties of war in the twentieth century combined. After the disease had swept through the nation, towns that once began their days in lazy, comfortable manners had begun to struggle to get through a single day. What started as a mild neglect of a typical fever

Influenza Epidemic Of 1918 Essay

1497 words - 6 pages global disaster was nicknamed the “Spanish Flu,” or “La Grippe.” The nickname of the Spanish Flu came from one of the earliest countries to be hit hard by influenza; eight million people in Spain were killed in the May of 1918. There were also other nicknames for the epidemic. The French called it “purulent bronchitis,” the Italians named it “sandfly fever,” and the Germans labeled it “Blitz Katarrh.” The Influenza Epidemic of 1918, a virus that

The 1918 Influenza Pandemic Essay

2504 words - 10 pages The 1918 Influenza Pandemic The United States entered the War in 1918 and brought influenza to America that medical historian Roy Porter has called “the greatest single demographic shock mankind has ever experienced, the most deadly pestilence since the Black Death.”[1] In the late nineteen thirties, members of the Federal Writer’s Project (FWP) with the Works Progress Administration (WPA), interviewed people who remembered surviving the

The 1918 1919 Influenza Epidemic Essay

3520 words - 14 pages would go down there and play on those boxes; it was like playing on the pyramids.”2 Although business was booming for these professions, it was not because of the war. It was the result of an unexpected killer that swept across the world claiming victims at an unprecedented rate. The 1918-1919 influenza pandemic stretched its lethal tentacles all over the globe, even to the most remote areas of the planet, killing fifty million people or