Friday, November 21, 2008

New Orleans Interments

Death and burial rituals may differ dramatically between countries, among cultures, and among religions. New Orleans, because of its location and varied culture, has always had unique and interesting cemeteries and customs. In her article, "New Orleans Interments," Judy Rosella Edwards explores burial practices in New Orleans during the mid-1800s when disease was rampant, and offers ideas and resources for research.

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Thursday, October 16, 2008

New Orleans: Healthy Life in a New World

In her article, "New Orleans: Healthy Life in a New World," Judy Rosella Edwards provides an overview of perils of disease and loss of life faced by emigrants crossing the sea bound for New Orleans, perils faced emigrants bound for any port. The article reports, "It was not until the latter part of the 1800s that ships were required to have a physician on board. Sickness on the larger, more crowded boats could quickly become and epidemic -- and did."

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Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Resources examine 1918 Flu

Today's article, "The Influenza Epidemic of 1918," on, Kimberly's Genealogy Blog provides some interesting additional sources for those researching ancestors during the 1917-1918 time period, including the Influenza Digital Archive out of the University of Michigan's Center for the History of Medicine and the Pandemic Influenza Storybook, among others. As noted in the article, "Most are aware that WWI had a devastating impact on our ancestral history, claiming an estimated 16 million lives. The influenza epidemic of 1918, however, killed an estimated 50 million people, nearly a fifth of the world's population. Yet, it is rarely afforded more than a footnote in the historical accounts of the time.

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Monday, August 25, 2008

Local area news can inform your genealogy

If you have early Michigan ancestry, you might be interested in the Detroit Free Press article, "This week in Michigan history: Cholera epidemic ravages Detroit." On Aug. 24, 1834, a second wave of the cholera epidemic struck Detroit, the article reports. Hundreds of Detroiters are believed to have died in August and September 1834 of cholera, which results from a bacterial infection of the intestine and can cause acute diarrhea, shock and severe dehydration in a short time. . . . City officials typically rang a bell when someone died. The custom was discontinued when the ringing became so frequent that it caused panic. The cholera epidemic, which first appeared in 1832, returned to Detroit several times from 1849 to 1865.

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