Daily State Register [Springfield]
9 Dec. 1902, p.5. GenealogyBank.com.
NewsBank And/or the American Antiquarian Society,
2004. Web. 9 Feb. 2016.
Diphtheria, on the other hand, was a very real threat to families and communities at the turn of the 20th century and for centuries before that. A diphtheria epidemic in the Springfield, Illinois area took the life of my great grandmother's niece. Newspaper, census, and interment records help tell the story.
Just days after Henrietta died, her older sister Elizabeth also contracted the disease. Because of the risk to others, such details were published in the local newspaper. Local board of health laws required that "all houses where either disease [scarlet fever or diphtheria] exists must be placarded for six weeks from the time the disease is determined."1