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Yellow Fever

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NEWS
March 7, 2016 | By Don Sapatkin, STAFF WRITER
In 1793, the Aedes aegypti mosquito carried yellow fever from the tropics to Philadelphia, killing 10 percent of the population and forcing much of the rest - including President George Washington and his entire government - to flee. That same mosquito is now spreading the Zika virus through Latin and South America. But the insect species no longer thrives anywhere near Philadelphia. What has changed? Modern living. Screens, air-conditioning, sewers, insecticide, and better health care combined to deprive this particular mosquito of its favored meal, human blood.
NEWS
February 1, 1993 | by Ron Avery, Daily News Staff Writer
It was the deadliest, most catastrophic, gut-wrenching event in Philadelphia history. For four months, just about everything else in what was then America's largest city - the capital of a new nation - stopped while the populace either fled in terror, died or fought for their lives. This year marks the 200th anniversary of the worst yellow-fever outbreak on the East Coast. Many local historians find the late summer and fall of 1793 the most fascinating and dramatic period in city history.
NEWS
April 3, 2012
IN A CITY that has made history a backbone of a multibillion-dollar tourist trade, it might surprise the average citizen how little he or she knows about Philadelphia's history outside the narrow window of 1776. That's one reason why we were quite taken with a new multipart documentary series on the city's history being produced by former mayoral candidate and Pennsylvania Intergovernmental Cooperation Authority board chief Sam Katz. Katz has produced two out of potentially 12 segments of "Philadelphia, the Great Experiment," a lively documentary on the city.
NEWS
November 1, 1993 | by Ron Avery, Daily News Staff Writer
Philadelphia has endured a lot of trauma: British occupation, anti- Catholic bloodshed, Spanish flu, Red scares, race riots, Mafia wars, MOVE wars, AIDS. But nothing approaches the devastation, drama and threat to the city's existence as the great yellow-fever epidemic of 1793. During late summer and fall of that year, commerce and government practically ceased. Half the population fled while 5,000 died. Just burying the victims was a challenge in a city paralyzed by fear.
NEWS
July 16, 1998 | By Lynn H. Yeakel
It took less than 100 days. Ten percent of Philadelphia's population died in the yellow fever epidemic that devastated this city in 1793. Memories of that disaster spurred Congress to create the Public Health Service 200 years ago: July 16, 1798. The small corps of physicians - the first group of federal employees who had to meet testing requirements to be hired - was charged with caring for merchant marines. We've relegated yellow fever to the history books, but the Public Health Service continues to be a not-so-silent partner in our challenge to the hazards that put our lives at risk every day. Across the street from Independence Hall, not far from the final resting place of many victims of that long-ago epidemic, the PHS wages its battle from the regional office of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.
NEWS
November 2, 1993 | By Jeff Gelles, INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
That chill wind that howled through window and tree all day yesterday was more than just a harbinger of winter. It was an echo of another cold snap 200 years ago - a frost that ended three months of disease and death in the City of Brotherly Love. The yellow fever epidemic of 1793 laid waste to the young republic's capital and largest city. It killed 5,000 of the Philadelphia area's 50,000 residents and sickened thousands more. About half the rest fled, including George Washington, Pennsylvania Gov. Thomas Mifflin, and others who could afford to leave.
NEWS
October 6, 2002 | By Joseph S. Kennedy INQUIRER SUBURBAN STAFF
During the last decade of the 18th century, there were a number of yellow fever epidemics in Philadelphia. Outbreaks of this dread disease occurred in 1793, 1797 and 1798, killing nearly 10,000 people, according to S.P. Wetherill's Philadelphia History (1916). City officials linked the epidemics to ships from foreign countries docking in the port of Philadelphia. The only way to deal with contagious diseases was to isolate victims. In 1799 the city government bought 10 acres in Essington on the Delaware to establish a quarantine station.
NEWS
May 17, 2008 | By Edward Colimore, Inquirer Staff Writer
She has held the same tortured pose for more than 130 years, her face contorted, her mouth open wide in a scream. Bony hands press against her sides, and strands of strawberry-blond hair fall behind her. Who is this mysterious woman at the Mütter Museum in Center City? How and when did she die? And what can modern science tell us about her? One night last week, after the museum closed, radiographers, forensics experts and technicians attempted to pry the secrets from the so-called "soap lady" using high-tech portable X-ray equipment.
NEWS
July 6, 2010 | By Allison Steele, Inquirer Staff Writer
It was the summer of 1798, and fear ruled in Philadelphia. For the second time in five years, a devastating epidemic of yellow fever was sweeping through the nation's capital. Wealthy and influential residents, including President John Adams, fled to the countryside in droves, as they had learned to do during prior outbreaks. Those who could not leave were at the mercy of the virus, which attacked the liver, caused bleeding and vomiting, and sent people running into the streets screaming in delirium.
NEWS
February 26, 2016 | By William C. Kashatus
The outbreak of the Zika virus in Central and South America has triggered an international public health emergency because of a possible link to microcephaly, a neurological disorder that results in babies being born with abnormally small heads, as well as to Guillain-Barre, a rare syndrome in which the immune system attacks the nerves. Although the virus was discovered nearly 70 years ago in the Zika forest in Uganda, most people had not heard of it until the past few months. But Philadelphians became very familiar with a similar mosquito-transmitted infection in 1793 when it claimed the lives of 4,400 residents, nearly 10 percent of the city's population Known as "Yellow Fever," the 1793 epidemic was traced to the Aedes aegypti mosquito, the same carrier of Zika.
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ARTICLES BY DATE
NEWS
May 30, 2016 | By Tirdad Derakhshani, Staff Writer
It's hard to think of a contemporary writer as quintessentially Philadelphian as Diane McKinney-Whetstone. The Chestnut Hill resident, who grew up in West Philadelphia, creates characters firmly rooted in the city and its neighborhoods, its parks and streets, its slums and mansions. Anchored by the city, her stories explore the nitty-gritty of life for ordinary people who live on either side of racial and class divides. Her best-selling 1996 debut, Tumbling , was set in South Philadelphia during the 1940s and '50s.
NEWS
March 7, 2016 | By Don Sapatkin, STAFF WRITER
In 1793, the Aedes aegypti mosquito carried yellow fever from the tropics to Philadelphia, killing 10 percent of the population and forcing much of the rest - including President George Washington and his entire government - to flee. That same mosquito is now spreading the Zika virus through Latin and South America. But the insect species no longer thrives anywhere near Philadelphia. What has changed? Modern living. Screens, air-conditioning, sewers, insecticide, and better health care combined to deprive this particular mosquito of its favored meal, human blood.
NEWS
February 26, 2016 | By William C. Kashatus
The outbreak of the Zika virus in Central and South America has triggered an international public health emergency because of a possible link to microcephaly, a neurological disorder that results in babies being born with abnormally small heads, as well as to Guillain-Barre, a rare syndrome in which the immune system attacks the nerves. Although the virus was discovered nearly 70 years ago in the Zika forest in Uganda, most people had not heard of it until the past few months. But Philadelphians became very familiar with a similar mosquito-transmitted infection in 1793 when it claimed the lives of 4,400 residents, nearly 10 percent of the city's population Known as "Yellow Fever," the 1793 epidemic was traced to the Aedes aegypti mosquito, the same carrier of Zika.
ENTERTAINMENT
April 4, 2012 | Ellen Gray
Editor's note: Due to a production error, this story did not appear in Tuesday's Daily News. It is being repeated in full today. PHILADELPHIA: THE GREAT EXPERIMENT. 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, 6ABC. By ellen gray Daily News Television Critic IF FILMMAKER Ken Burns had had Sam Katz's budget, we might still be in the early innings of "Baseball. " But Katz, the former mayoral candidate, who, along with his son, Philip, has been at work for a few years on a documentary series on the history of Philadelphia, is making progress.
NEWS
April 3, 2012
IN A CITY that has made history a backbone of a multibillion-dollar tourist trade, it might surprise the average citizen how little he or she knows about Philadelphia's history outside the narrow window of 1776. That's one reason why we were quite taken with a new multipart documentary series on the city's history being produced by former mayoral candidate and Pennsylvania Intergovernmental Cooperation Authority board chief Sam Katz. Katz has produced two out of potentially 12 segments of "Philadelphia, the Great Experiment," a lively documentary on the city.
NEWS
April 1, 2012 | Inquirer Editorial
Who would have thought Sam Katz would become an accomplished documentary filmmaker? That talent was never on display when he ran for mayor again and again and again. But Katz has turned his efforts in a new direction, and it has been to Philadelphia's benefit. The second in his Philadelphia: The Great Experiment series of documentaries will air at 7:30 p.m. Wednesday on WPVI, Channel 6. The documentary, Fever: 1793, looks at the yellow fever epidemic that hit Philadelphia that year.
NEWS
April 1, 2012 | By Miriam Hill, Inquirer Staff Writer
In the summer of 1793, people in Philadelphia began dying of a mysterious disease, later identified as yellow fever. By the end of the year, the illness had killed one in 10 Philadelphians, yet the devastation also strengthened the city. Determined to prevent future outbreaks, leaders created the Water Works, revived public parks and improved hospital care. Former mayoral candidate Sam Katz and his son Philip tell this tragic, gruesome, yet inspiring story in the latest installment of their 12-part video documentary on this city's history titled, Philadelphia: The Great Experiment.
ENTERTAINMENT
March 23, 2012 | By Toby Zinman, For The Inquirer
Azuka Theatre's production of Hope Street and Other Lonely Places by Genne Murphy is exactly the kind of show I want to like. A small theater company, a new script by a local playwright, and under the direction of Kevin Glaccum, who runs the company. I arrived with my cheerleader pom-poms at the ready. And then the play began. About halfway through Act 1, I whispered to my friend in the next seat, "Did it start yet?" Hope Street , set in Philadelphia, is built on so many cliches, so much inaction, with so pointlessly inconclusive a plot, and performed in a style of acting so naturalistic that it seems to be anti-acting, that the answer to my question was both yes, obviously, and no, not really.
NEWS
March 5, 2012 | By Kristin E. Holmes, Inquirer Staff Writer
The historic Lazaretto, a 213-year-old building that once served as a quarantine hospital and that is unlike anything still standing in North America, almost didn't make it. When its owner balked at a surging tax assessment, developers snapped up the property, salivating at the potential of the 10-acre Tinicum Township tract as a parking lot serving neighboring Philadelphia International Airport. But in the end, preservationists and a stubborn Board of Commissioners won out. There will be no field of cars on the Delaware County site where, starting in 1801, thousands of immigrants were treated as they arrived in the New World.
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