The Saffron Scourge: A History of Yellow Fever in Louisiana, 1796-1905

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  • This ground breaking study is the first to comprehensively examine the history of yellow fever in Louisiana. As the state's largest city and principal port, New Orleans was frequently the center of yellow fever outbreaks. Brought in repeatedly via shipping from Latin American endemic centers, the disease spread from the city throughout the region, carried by infected persons or mosquitoes, along the expanding lines of trade and travel--river, coastal, and later rail. In its numerous attacks spread over more than a century of southern history, the saffron scourge destroyed thousands of lives, cost millions of dollars, and affected almost every facet of community life.

    Author Jo Ann Carrigan discusses every major epidemic from 1796 through 1905, with attention to the historical peculiarities of major visitations as well as similarities observed in all yellow fever epidemics. Saffron Scourge then shifts to topical discussions of medical theories and controversies, changing patterns of therapy, the social, political, and economic consequences of yellow fever, and the means by which medical science finally conquered the disease

  • Jo Ann Carrigan was the managing editor of Louisiana History (periodical) and editor of Alcee Fortier's History of Lousiana. She obtained her MA and Ph.D. in American History from Louisiana State University.