The 1918 Spanish Flu Pandemic

The Corona Times – March 25, 2020

SPECIAL NOTE: Mitchell County has its first confirmed case of COVID-19. The Toe River Health District made the announcement at 8:30 this evening.

COVID-19 is not the first major pandemic in our region. Many of you have heard of the Spanish Flu Pandemic of 1918. This Corona virus came home with our soldiers as they left Europe. There were two waves of infection, with the worst happening in the fall.

Photo of Rod Mullins

Rod Mullins

Photo of Steve Gilly

Steve Gilly

We could tell the story in words, but we have a special resource to share about the pandemic. Steve Gilly and Rod Mullins, a couple of good friends of the Mitchell County Historical Society, produce an audio podcast called Stories, A History of Appalachia. In the episode out when this post was written, they discuss the famous pandemic and some of the conditions found in the Appalachian Mountains at that time. The program is focused on East Tennessee, Southwestern Virginia, and Kentucky but it gives a great overview of what happened and the many people who died or had their lives affected by the flu. In North Carolina, 13,644 people died during the pandemic. We are doing research to determine the numbers who died in our region.

Here is a link to the episode where you can listen to it online. It is only a few minutes long. If you enjoy stories about history in the Southern Appalachians, we’re sure you would enjoy. You can listen on the website or download the program to you smart phone. If you need help, drop us a note (mitchellnchistory@gmail.com) and we will help you with the podcast.

Stories Podcast Logo

We Want to Tell Your Story

If you have stories, images, or videos that you would like to include in The Corona Times, please e-mail mitchellnchistory@gmail.com with your stories and files for inclusion. If you have problems sending us videos, please e-mail and we will make arrangements for you to upload the video to us.

About the Numbers

You will note a series of numbers contained in the blog. They document the spread of virus through confirmed cases by the federal Centers for Disease Control and by the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services. These are the official totals provided by state and local government at the date of the post and do not include estimates or cases not confirmed by these agencies. This is our effort to provide an accurate gauge of confirmed virus spread as it continues during the pandemic.

504

Cases in North Carolina
3/25/20

27

Cases in Western North Carolina
3/25/20

1

Deaths in North Carolina
3/25/20

54,483

Cases in the United States
3/25/20

737

Deaths in the United States
3/25/20

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