One hundred years ago, during the final days of the First World War, a microscopic menace attacked humanity on a global scale: the Spanish Influenza. The conditions of the war (overcrowding and global troop movements) hastened the rapid spread of this disease. Because of the lack of reliable healthcare and sanitary practices in the public-at-large, this disease quickly escalated into a public health crisis.
Posts Tagged With: pandemic
It is week 22 in the 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks writing challenge. This week’s writing prompt, Uncertain, is an appropriate adjective to describe these past few months. The world is turning topsy-turvy. Amid pandemic, prejudice, and protests live unease, unrest, and uncertainty.
For days, I have tried to focus on genealogy and write about the past, but the present, so chaotic and psychotic, has kept me in the here and now. So instead of writing about our ancestors this week, I will instead highlight the lives and experiences of the living…
It is Week 18 in the 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks’ writing challenge. This week’s writing prompt is Where There’s a Will.
The first thing I thought about when I saw this week’s theme was all the William Williams ancestors there are in the family tree. However, as I had already covered some of these William Williams, specifically William Williams, son of Welsh Quaker immigrants, who was born in 1749, in Chester County, Pennsylvania, perhaps I should write about someone else.
What about some famous Williams? Well, I have already written about William of Longespee, William I of Scotland, William III of Aquitaine, and William IX of Aquitaine. Did I really want to feature another well-known William?
No, I would rather highlight an every day Will. Someone who would rarely appear in the pages of history. As I had already written about William Christian, William L. Goss, William Ferguson Taylor, William H. Taylor, James Bernard Williams, Philip Williams, and a slew of other Williams, would there be any left about whom I could write?
The following post deals with some seriously sad times in humanity’s history.
To help lighten up an otherwise gloomy piece, I have included a bit of British humor for your viewing entertainment.
The Black Death, also known as the Great Plague, was one of the most devastating pandemics in human history.
In October 1347, about a dozen Italian merchant ships returning from the Black Sea, one of the key trade routes to China, docked at the port of Messina, Sicily. Many of sailors aboard these ships were either dead or seriously ill. Although the authorities ordered these ships to leave the harbor immediately, it was already too late. Within days, the disease had spread throughout Sicily and onto the mainland. One eyewitness told this grim tale:
“Realizing what a deadly disaster had come to them, the people quickly drove the Italians from their city. But the disease remained, and soon death was everywhere. Fathers abandoned their sick sons. Lawyers refused to come and make out wills for the dying. Friars and nuns were left to care for the sick, and monasteries and convents were soon deserted, as they were stricken, too. Bodies were left in empty houses, and there was no one to give them a Christian burial.”