1918 Flu Pandemic History
At the conclusion of World War I, the planet encountered a new danger: the Spanish flu. What exactly was it that made the Spanish flu so intense? Where did it come from, and how did it begin?
Where Did the Spanish Flu Start?
It may surprise you to understand the Spanish flu did not actually start in Spain. In fact, it could have started in numerous nations. Scientists have traced it back to France, China, Great Britain, and the United States, but its exact origin is still unknown.
So why was it called the”Spanish flu”? The answer goes back to politics. Many world forces at the time were involved in World War I, and leaders did not want news of the flu to demoralize troops. Spain, on the other hand, managed to remain a neutral force and freely reported news of the flu.
On the Earth, it looked like Spain was the epicenter of the pandemic. Spain instead believed it originated in France and dubbed it the”French flu.”
An ambulance carriage carries a man with all the Spanish Flu of 1918.
What Led to the Spanish Flu?
Experts feel that Spanish influenza evolved from the bird flu, making it possible for birds to transmit the illness to humans. Its development lets it spread through droplets from the atmosphere caused by coughing, coughing, breathing, and talking.
Spanish influenza has this in common with other pandemics in the previous century. Influenza in 1957 mutated from a strain found in ducks, the Hong Kong flu of 1968 could have evolved from viruses infecting birds and pigs, and the swine flu in 2009 mutated from viruses located in pig herds. COVID-19 also might have evolved from animal viruses probably found in rodents.
How Long Would the 1918 Pandemic Last?
The 1918 pandemic started in the spring of 1918 and lasted through the summer of 1919, approximately 18 months total. In that time, you will find three major waves of this pandemic. The first wave occurred in the spring of 1918 when the virus had been released. The next and most acute wave occurred in the autumn of 1918. The third and final wave lasted throughout the winter and spring months of 1919.
Scientists anticipate similar waves across the COVID-19 pandemic. The initial instances of COVID-19 were reported in December 2019, together with the first wave of the pandemic hitting at winter and spring months of 2020.
Below are significant events that took place throughout the 1918 pandemic:
People today wear masks on trolleys throughout the 1918 Spanish Flu pandemic. March 1918
On March 4, the world’s first documented case of the flu is recorded at Camp Funston, Kansas, USA. One hundred additional soldiers at the camp have symptoms within a day, and you will find over 500 cases at the camp within a week. Throughout March, cases also start appearing elsewhere in the USA, Europe, and Asia.
Countless thousands of U.S. soldiers deploy to Europe for World War I. Examples propagate through France, Germany, Great Britain, Italy, and Spain. It afterwards reaches Russia, North Africa, India, and Japan. June 1918–July 1918
Outbreaks occur in China, Brazil, the South Pacific, and Australia. From July, the first tide starts to recede. September 1918–November 1918
The second and most acute wave of the virus stalks. International troop mobilization promotes the spread. Medical staff and resources are overwhelmed globally. Governments start implementing safety precautions, such as requiring masks, closing public spaces, and asking personal sanitization. November 1918
World War I ends, and people around the world celebrate. Public parties and soldiers returning home enable further spread of the influenza. January 1919–June 1919
The third wave of the pandemic starts. This tide is less severe compared to second and gradually tapers off, marking the end of the pandemic.
A woman wears a mask while she works during the 1918 Spanish Flu.