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Tuesday, December 09, 2008

Map Quest

My favorite of the antique maps of Washington is the quarantine one, where each house is outlined and marked with the particular ailment that plagued it. In Georgetown this map hung on the wall of our house, a house that was, according to the map, a harborer of "Diarrhoeal Diseases" back in the day. Guests loved to look up the particular malady attributed to their own property. We all found the map's data simultaneously horrifying and amusing.

Last night I logged onto NCLive and watched a video on the Spanish Flu pandemic of 1918 in which the scientists stated firmly that another flu pandemic was imminent during the next decade. I did the math in my head: video from 2004 = 6 years at most. Then I wondered if the local Health Department would be making a map like mine, a quarantine map.

I'm not so sure I find my map amusing anymore.

NCLive (contact public library for access code)
Secrets of the Dead: Killer Flu
Forsyth County Department of Public Health
Winston-Salem State University's Pandemic Bird Flu Preparedness Plans
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