Spokane and the Nation: The Influenza Epidemic of 1918-1919

Headline: “Cheney Plans to Fight Influenza”

Source: Spokesman-Review, October 29, 1918, page 7

Subject: Plans at Cheney Normal to quell the epidemic

Synopsis: At Cheney Normal School (now known as Eastern Washington University), measures were taken by to fight the influenza outbreak and care for the sick. The girls are staying at the house of a woman named Mrs. Houck and the girls’ dormitory, Monroe Hall.

Notable Quotations:

• All of the food for the boys who are sick in the barracks is being prepared at the domestic science department of the normal school, under the direction of Miss Atkins, who has a number of students assisting her.

• The girls had escaped infection, but within the last 48 hours several cases appeared, and it was deemed best by President Showalter to adjourn school. The girls are being kept at Mrs. Houck’s and at the girls’ dormitory, Monroe Hall.

Cheney Plans to Fight Influenza”

Hospital Fitted Up on Normal School Campus and Patients Are Isolated

Spokane Red Cross [unreadable]

Classes Postponed and Students Permitted to Go Home – Mrs. Monroe Cares for Girls

            CHENEY, Wash., Oct. 28. – The influenza situation in Cheney, the S.A.T.C. [Students’ Army Training Corps] barracks and the normal school is satisfactory. About 50 of the boys in the army unit have either had or are having the disease. In no instance so far has there been any complication. A residence on the campus has been fitted for a hospital. The worst cases have been taken there and all are in some stage of convalescence.

            The Red Cross organization of Spokane has assisted in equipping the hospital, and in addition furnished full equipment for the barracks. The Cheney branch of the Red Cross society, of which Miss Stevens is president, has taken over the feeding of the boys in the hospitals, Mrs. N.F. Hinch being in charge.

            The public school building, which was given by the community for barracks for the S.A.T.C. unit, has been arranged for the care of the boys. Miss Dobbs, head of the health department of the state normal school, a graduate nurse, has been placed in charge of the barracks.

            Dr. Mel West, a Cheney physician, has been appointed by the government as acting surgeon. All of the food for the boys who are sick in the barracks is being prepared at the domestic science department of the normal school, under the direction of Miss Atkins, who has a number of students assisting her.

            Normal classes were postponed and students permitted to go home. The girls had escaped infection, but within the last 48 hours several cases appeared, and it was deemed best by President Showalter to adjourn school. The girls are being kept at Mrs. Houck’s and at the girls’ dormitory, Monroe Hall.

            Mrs. Mary A. Monroe of Spokane, president of the board of trustees, came here yesterday and is assisting in caring for the girls. The organization of the nurses for the girls will be under the direction of Mrs. Monroe and Miss Kirk, director of Monroe Hall.

            A number of cases are reported in the surrounding country.