Download A Very Remarkable Sickness: Epidemics in the Petit Nord, by Paul Hackett PDF

By Paul Hackett

The region among the good Lakes and Lake Winnipeg, bounded at the north by way of the Hudson Bay lowlands, is usually referred to as the "Petit Nord." delivering a hyperlink among the towns of japanese Canada and the western inside, the Petit Nord was once a severe verbal exchange and transportation hub for the North American fur exchange for over two hundred years. even if new illnesses had first arrived within the New global within the sixteenth century, by way of the top of the seventeenth century shorter transoceanic trip time intended some distance larger variety of illnesses survived the adventure from Europe and have been nonetheless capable of infect new groups. those acute, without delay transmitted infectious illnesses, together with smallpox, influenza, and measles, will be accountable for a enormous demise and might eternally rework North American Aboriginal groups. old geographer Paul Hackett meticulously strains the diffusion of those ailments from Europe via critical Canada to the West. major buying and selling gatherings at Sault Ste. Marie, the alternate carried in the course of the Petit Nord by way of Hudson Bay corporation ships, and the go back and forth nexus on the pink River cost, all supplied major breeding floor for the creation, incubation and transmission of acute ailment. Hackett's research of facts in fur-trade journals and oral background, mixed together with his research of the diffusion behaviour and features of particular illnesses, yields a finished photograph of the place, whilst, and the way the astounding influence of those epidemics was once felt.

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Extra resources for A Very Remarkable Sickness: Epidemics in the Petit Nord, 1670-1846

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These greatly affected at least the patterns of diffusion into the interior, if not also the frequency of these epidemics. There is very little evidence for epidemics in either the Atlantic coastal area or in the interior between 1600 and about 1630, perhaps due in part to a lack of documentary evidence. It is also probable that Old World diseases were extremely rare in this part of North America at this time. The first widespread epidemic in northeastern North America occurred along the coast of New England between 1616 and approximately 1619, but failed to spread far inland, being limited to parts of present-day Massachusetts, 31 32 CHAPTER ONE Maine, and Rhode Island.

An analysis of the travel times from their final departure point in the British Isles to the first landing at the HBC posts during the period from 1719 to 1737 reveals a mean duration of just over sixty-seven days, or of more than seven weeks. Of thirty-two voyages during this period, only two lasted less than fifty days, both in 1731, when the journey was made in forty-six days. 4 The small potential reservoir to support the afflictions during the voyage was also a limiting factor. The HBC ships sailing to Hudson Bay were small and carried few passengers and crew, compared to the large colony ships sailing to the Atlantic coastal colonies or to the Pacific countries studied by Haggett.

There is very little evidence for epidemics in either the Atlantic coastal area or in the interior between 1600 and about 1630, perhaps due in part to a lack of documentary evidence. It is also probable that Old World diseases were extremely rare in this part of North America at this time. The first widespread epidemic in northeastern North America occurred along the coast of New England between 1616 and approximately 1619, but failed to spread far inland, being limited to parts of present-day Massachusetts, 31 32 CHAPTER ONE Maine, and Rhode Island.

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