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

Headline: “Close Schools First Day That ‘Flu’ Appears”

Source: Spokane Daily Chronicle, October 7, 1918, page 1

Subject: Preparing for the epidemic

Synopsis: Spokane’s health officer, Dr. J.B. Anderson, announced that all public gathering places will be closed as soon as cases of Spanish influenza appear in the city. The state health commissioner has promised aid to any city struck by the disease.

Notable Quotation:

• “‘The authorities will not wait for an epidemic of the disease before taking action.’”

• “‘Dr. J.E. Drake, school physician, reported this morning that every school child is being closely watched by the school nurses.’”

“Close Schools First Day That ‘Flu’ Appears”

Spokane Will Not Take Any Chances With Disease – To Shut Theaters.

            “All public gathering places in Spokane, including the schools and theaters, will be closed at the first sign that the Spanish influenza has struck this city,” said Health Officer Dr. J.B. Anderson, this morning. “The authorities will not wait for an epidemic of the disease before taking action.

            “Instructions received today from State Health Commissioner Tuttle include this order and state that the Red Cross and every possible agency will give immediate aid should an epidemic come. The federal health officials have sent warnings out [that] broadcast against the disease and offer help to local health officers or physicians.

            “Dr. J.E. Drake, school physician, reported this morning that every school child is being closely watched by the school nurses.”