DATE OF EVENT: Sunday, Dec. 1, 1918
DATE PUBLISHED: Monday, Dec. 2, 1918, in The Kansas City Times
Editor’s note: As World War I drew to its close, the world faced another killer: the influenza epidemic of 1918-1919. Believed to have begun at Camp Funston in Kansas, the epidemic would take more lives than the war. More than one-quarter of the U.S. population would be infected. Although this story seems to indicate a decline, the epidemic wasn’t over yet; a week later, the disease would kill 248 persons. In Kansas City, the death toll would reach 2,400 over the course of six months.
Reports of the contagious diseases department of the health board showed a great decrease in the number of influenza cases yesterday. One hundred and fifty-nine new cases of influenza and three of pneumonia were listed yesterday. Twenty-six releases were made. More than a hundred influenza or pneumonia patients are in the isolation ward of General Hospital. Preparations are being made to use the fourth floor of the hospital for additional patients.
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J. B. Brown, commissioner of the health department on the Kansas side, has called a meeting of school principals to plan a fight against influenza in the schools. The schools are scheduled to open today. Mr. Brown may again ask state aid in combating the epidemic.
N. A. Harris, chief of police at Independence, who is putting up cards on houses where new cases of influenza are found, said twelve new cases were reported yesterday.