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Epidemic Timeline For Alaska
(Selected Dates to 1900)
From Robert Fortuine’s Chills and Fever

Russian Period

1791 Respiratory illness in the Aleutians and Kodiak Island
1802 Deadly fever brought to Atka on the Russian galiot Aleksandr Nevskii
1804 Respiratory disease in Kodiak brought by the Boston ship O’Cain
Respiratory disease in the Aleutians that killed so many people that there were not enough men left to bury the dead.
1807-08 Dysentery in Unalaska and the Aleutians
Influenza or measles in Sitka brought by an American ship from Java, spread to Kodiak by the Finlandia
1827-28 Likely influenza, in Kodiak
1830 Respiratory disease on the Alaska Peninsula and the Aleutian Islands
1830s Probably typhoid in Sitka
1832 Severe deadly epidemic of unknown type on the Nushagak River
Smallpox epidemic throughout Alaska: killed between one quarter and two-thirds of the people in all villages; survivors were scarred and easy prey to secondary infections.
1841 Possibly diphtheria in Sitka
1843-44 Mumps in Southeast Alaska
1844 Probably whooping cough on the lower Yukon River
1845 Whooping cough in Sitka
1848 Measles in Southeast Alaska
1851-52 Influenza in Barrow
1853 Coughs and stabbing pains on the Alaska Peninsula
1859 Respiratory disease up and down the Yukon
1860 Coughs and stabbing pains on the Alaska Peninsula
1860 Measles throughout Russian America
Scarlet fever epidemic among Gwich’in, probably introduced by Hudson’s Bay employees
1862-63 Influenza in Sitka
1867 Pleurisy and bronchitis in Nulato

American Period

1874-75 Measles in Prince William Sound and Kodiak
Respiratory disease in the Aleutians
1882 Measles in Southeast Alaska
1882 Diphtheria along the Yukon River, from Canada to the lower Yukon
1883 Pneumonia and whooping cough in Ingalik villages
1888 Influenza in Unalaska, striking virtually all residents
1888 Pneumonia in Lake Iliamna area
1888-1890 Pneumonia in Bristol Bay
1890 Influenza wiped out more than a hundred Nunamiut Eskimos
1894 Bronchopneumonia struck 3/4 of the population of Point Hope
1896 Influenza in southwestern Alaska Yup’ik areas
Influenza-measles epidemic spread throughout western Alaska from Atka to Point Hope




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