Flu Pandemic Of 1918
On this date in 1918, Albert Mitchell, an Army cook at what is now Fort Riley in Kansas, fell sick with the flu. By noon that day, 107 soldiers reported the same symptoms and, two days later, 415 more had fallen ill. Soldiers at other military bases were similarly afflicted, as were seamen moored off the East Coast, prisoners at Alcatraz penitentiary in San Francisco and every state in the Union. Next the disease spread to China, Japan, Africa and South America. At the time, doctors knew little about the disease. The flu pandemic of 1918 claimed 675,000 American lives and more than 20 million worldwide before vanishing as quickly as it began.
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