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The Ogden standard. [volume] (Ogden City, Utah) 1913-1920, July 18, 1914, 4 P.M. City Edition, MAGAZINE SECTION, Image 13

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Persistent link: https://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/lccn/sn85058396/1914-07-18/ed-1/seq-13/

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-ji i magazine section i THE OGDEN STANDARD f
4 I r- 1 . 1 I
i Guarding AiA ainsi ff I
Why is it we have feared raU
f through all ages?
The rat Is typical of all that is low
. and mean, and we would rather be
1 K left along In a dark room with a
I Black Hand murderer than with a
I rat. For ages the wise men of the
world have laughed at the iar nf
' rats. The fear was only an instinct-
I lve one, and we were told to get
rid of our instinct and listen to
Today it is the wise ones who are
urging us to kill the rat. Ab usual,
instinct was right. We feared the
I rat without knowing why and now
find he is a deadly enemy of man.
5 He is the agent of the bubonic
The other da the medical experts
! ; were alarmed with the news that
two cases of bubonic plague or sus
pected plague hai broken out In
I N'ew Orleans. Surgeon General Hu-
Ipert Blue of the Government
Health Service was rushed to New
Orleans to combat the possibility nf
the plague spreading all over the
United States.
America is a land practically free
from disease. Seldom, indeed, do
, the terrible Asiatic scourges cross
ver, .'he ocean and Invade our shores.
5 In We have been able to keep them
out by rigid Inspection at the port!
In- and by fighting th lerms of for-
i to eign plagues when they have gained
the foothold in this country.
rom Prior to the Civil War the United
way Btatef was invaded by Asiatic chol-
rton era, which swept the country, oarrv-
thft lug death In its path. It struck Vil
lages remote from the great popu
lation center, where the entire pop
elation was swept away.
jgm After the war there were yellow
lever ravages. The United States is
ot the home of yellow fever. With
he coming of winter the disease
would retreat to Cuba or Central
America and wait for another year
to invade our shores. Wo hv con
quered yellow fever and driven lf
"rom almost every part of the.
mm i I. an continent. The oU world
the seat of the most deadly
p piics, and It is from these we
have to watch for invasion.
Bubonic plague has its original
home in Siberia, the land of Russian
exiles. It lives among the prairie
dogs of that extensive land and
they keep It continually alive. The
onl way the disease can he forever
stamped out is to kill the prairie
dogs of Siberia. From Siberia the
disease from time to time crosses th
frontier into the western bounds of
Uhina. Last year it is estimated by
officials of the Chinese Republic
that 176,090 persons died of bubonic
It frequently goes west and crosses
into Europe by way of Russia. There
are strict quarantines against the
bubonic plague centers of Siberia,
however, and It rarely breaks across
the frontier.
The disease is transmitted to Eu
ropeans and Americans by the rat
through the agency of the flea The
question naturally arises, why tho
plague does not kill the rats. The
fact is, that every rat Is like "Ty
phoid Mary," who was a culture for
the typhoid bacillus, but did not get
seriously ill hersplf. The rat and
other rodents are plague cultures,
but they are not seriously ill. The
germs are transmitted from the rat
to man by means of the flea.
If there were no fleas and rats
there would be no danger from the
deadly scourge In Axnelea Man
iannot give the plague to his neigh
bor. Care of those sick from bu
bonic plague Is simple because the
nurses will not get the disease un
less thoy are bilten by fleas, which
In turn have bitten rats. The dis
..ivc n-'-.ls th- rat foi one Magi' of
its development, and that stage is not
fatal. It is fatal as the second Stage
is reached, and that stage is reached
In man.
WHEN M:rujlt; PORT.
Persona Ifl with juch a disease as
pleeiie are not allowed to en
ter the United States. In coming to
America they are examined before
reaching' port. Th.- advantage of an
examination Just before reaching
port is evident. While a oerBon in
the early stages of illness could pass
the examinations when boarding the
steamer they would have more dif
ficulty at this end of the journey,
where the disease would be further
developed. It is customary for an
examination to be made at the Eu
ropean port because a steamship line
has to tike the passengers hack to
Europe free of charge if they brine;
them to this side of the water In a
diseased condition.
The examinations on shipboard
are often very picturesque. Many
of the great liners reach port early
in the morning and miny of the
first class passengers ro to the physi
cian for examination before they
have dressed for breakfast. They
are anxious to have the ordeal of
examination over. Men of all kinds
and women, too, can be seen on such
a morning going for their examina
tion. The fact that bubonic plague
germs were found in America re
cently indicates failure of some
physician on hoard a vessel to make
perfect examination of the patients
or else a rat vas allowed to enter
the port. I
When news 'f possibility of dis-
rase in New Orleans was given out.
health authorities did not wait for
the sickness to develop and spread
while they were making discoveries
They tlrst started to kill all rats in
sight. The home of ihe Volunteers
ef America was put under quaran
tine ar.d the house where they were
supposed to have contracted the dls
i sue was rat proofed and binned.
With the borne a a radius of a
zone extending four blocks in every
direction, the plans were for the
construction of a coBcratg- harrier
around the entire .ire; ftnn for a rat
drive towards the I enter.
Other ! arriers were erected as the
warfare progresses, so that when
the final onslaught was made every
rodent within the Infc-i'ted area was
destroyed. Poison and traps were
tlsed in the work of extermination,
drain pipes were screened to pre vent
the escape of a single rat, md
even expedient of scientific rat kill-
KKBBm sssssiiH
3.nd How the PUf 'JraP :;Jsms ssl
gjajBjfftlh;. Jj Eev. J - sassi 'f sbbbbbh
ABOVE Surgeon Gen
eral Rupert Blue. Be
low An early morning
medical inspection on ship
board, as the vessel is about
to enter port.
ing employed to prevent a spread of
the infection to other parts of the
c i t v.
Upper river cities were warned of
the possibilities of the spread of th
disease, and there campaigns were
started against the rat.
Plague kills the victim quickly.
It sometimes takes a month for the
disease to run Its course. At other
times the victim dies in a few hours.
The average time is three days. It.
Is not always fatal, but the course
is so quick that physicians have lit
tle time to fight the disease Until
fecaht years the victims were al
lowed to die. It was not known the
flea was a necessary contributor to
the spread of the disease, and whe,
one person had It all the others fled
and left him there None wished to
run the risk of caring for him. It
is the most falal of all disease.
In one of the ravages of Europe
It killed every person who took tho
disease In Southern Russia. In Bag
dad at the time of one epidemic, 55
per cent of the vlctclms died. It 13
supposed that tho number of fatali
ties in civilized countries has been
more than f0 per cent. But in the
last decade the disease has had lit
tle chance to spread. As soon as it
is discovered in a civilized port tho
precautions are taken which Insure
Its annihilation.
The disease has beoti Known from
the time of the Caesars. It swept
Armenia at the time of Christ Mar
cus Aurelius tells how it destroyed
the inhabitants Of Athens The de
scriptions of the disease, as h
writes It. are similar to those we
now know.
A moderately high temperature Ifl
necessary to the best development
of the disease.
Plague Is unknown In the tropics.
It has been heard of In Tcypt. but
never went south of Assouan. It
never crossed the plains of India
to the southern portions of the pen
insula In historic times. A tempera
ture of more than So degrees usually
checks the epidemic. It flourishes
under that temperature, but wheii
the thermometer drops to freezing
It quickly dies out In 1S7S. how
ever, It rngd In Moscow in the mid
dle of a severe winter. in dry
weather the temperature can gj
higher thin in damp weather It
nourishes in the Asiatic deserts at a
temperature of 11" degrees.
Until the discovery of bacteriology
a few years ago several heroic
physicians made post-mortem exam
inations of Victims of the dead In
Europe. Prior- to their examinations
It was supposed that tq h.indle a
dead person meant death it be
came almost impossible to Ret a
burying squad to take up the work
of caring for the dead, so terribly
frightened were the people. Bu ly
ing squads often worked in London
at the point of 4he bn.onel. The
fact that those who did the burying
were poor people, living in unsani
i , t- surroundings, accounts for tin
disease being conveyed to them.
They doubtless lived where there
were ficus, according to present daj
notions. The flea lurried th dis
ease to them from rats. They did K
nqj get it from the dead. K I
When physicians in their efforts RHt;
to study th.- causes of the disease Egg
D'egan to make post - mortem exam- Klft
lnatlons, they expected to die. The Bum
thought that they miaht be able to
learn something and tell of their
discoveries before they died, and Hu'
thej heroically set to work. To HflR
their surprise they did not die. Em:'
They came to the conclusion that mt:
their sanitary surrounding? were re-
sponsible' for their continued good H&j
health When the did get the dis- Bll
ease they noticed their families did
those; living with m
RATS ABE KM. I. I'D. 'M'-'
The plague evidently was a re- fi&Ff'
specter of persons. I hose with Jfl'
tnonej who lived in clean houses fife- $
and couid afford to kill the ratr did
not get the plague'. Thore who SHt
lived prions the rats and fleas got
the disease. It took a Ion? time Ht
to associate the disease with rats
and fleas, hut physicians Ions ago iH
BOoiated it With UW leanllno". 'H
Then the germ VgJ dicovaraL Bi
It la a vegetable growth like the ik
mellow rev.-, germ As the yellow RgQ
revet needs i rppAjulto tiv transmit
it. the plague nepda something to t--

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