Nova Scotia and the Great Influenza Pandemic, 1918-1920
A Remembrance of the Dead and an Archive for the Living
Ruth Holmes Whitehead
The definitive academic resource on the Great Influenza by the celebrated historian behind Black Loyalists in time for the pandemic's centenary.
It could kill in as little as ten hours. Extremely high fever, bleeding from eyes, nose, and ears, terrible pain, especially in the head and the joints, delirium—and then its victims literally drowned in their own fluids. Fifty to 100 million people worldwide died in this global pandemic in the early twentieth century.
The Great Influenza first entered Nova Scotia through ports. (Sydney, Cape Breton, received five hundred sick American troops in a single day.) For three years, the province coped with this vicious epidemic as it spread like wildfire. Local economies ceased functioning; fishing fleets, banks, and apple-canning factories reported all staff were suffering from the flu.
The heart of this book, however, is its human element. Oral histories, family memoirs, newspaper articles, and provincial death records tell, county by county, stories of those who died. Accompanied by 20 photographs, Nova Scotia and the Great Influenza Pandemic, 1918–1920 chronicles both provincial and personal efforts to cope during this most perilous time.