Canadian Journal of Infectious Diseases and Medical Microbiology

Canadian Journal of Infectious Diseases and Medical Microbiology / 2000 / Article

Historical Review | Open Access

Volume 11 |Article ID 782978 | https://doi.org/10.1155/2000/782978

C Stuart Houston, Stan Houston, "The First Smallpox Epidemic on the Canadian Plains: In the Fur-traders' Words", Canadian Journal of Infectious Diseases and Medical Microbiology, vol. 11, Article ID 782978, 4 pages, 2000. https://doi.org/10.1155/2000/782978

The First Smallpox Epidemic on the Canadian Plains: In the Fur-traders' Words

Abstract

William Tomison, in charge of the Hudson's Bay Company's Cumberland House on the Saskatchewan River, described the devastating smallpox epidemic of 1781 and 1782. He understood contagion, practised isolation and disinfection, and provided mortality statistics during a 'virgin soil' epidemic. Above all, he showed remarkable compassion. He and his men took dying Indians into their already crowded quarters, and provided them with food, shelter and 24 h care. This article describes the epidemic and its aftermath.

Copyright © 2000 Hindawi Publishing Corporation. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


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