September 13, 2023

Hidden History of Vaccination
Part 2: The 1900s

(Part 1 of this series, “The 1800s,” is available here.)

By the mid 1800’s, the dreadful living conditions of the masses quite dramatically improved. This was largely due to public health initiatives including sanitary infrastructure, an understanding of the importance of hygiene, improved nutrition, labor laws, and advances in science to name a few. Children who previously died from diarrhea and infectious diseases were living in greater numbers within the span of several decades.

It is safe to say, the Western world had transitioned from squalor and suffering to what we
recognize as our modern world.

At the end of the 1800’s, smallpox changed its character. After the summer of 1897, the severe type of smallpox with its high death rate, with rare exception, had entirely disappeared from the United States. It changed from a disease that killed 1 in 5 of its victims to 1 in 50 and later to as low as 1 in 380. The disease could still kill, but had become so much milder, it was mistaken for other infections such as chicken pox or skin eruptions.

By the early 1900’s, many health officials recognized that sanitation had done what vaccination had failed to do – conquer smallpox. Smallpox vaccination was on the decline and yet smallpox, like other diseases, was disappearing as a major threat. In 1914 Dr. C. Killick Millard wrote in “The Vaccination Question”:

“It is reasonable to believe that with the improved sanitation (using the term in its widest sense) smallpox will be completely banished from this country (England) as has been the case with plague, cholera, and typhus fever.”

In the case of measles, the death rate had declined by almost 100 percent. You would never know it today, but the dreaded measles was no longer an issue in the Western world by the time vaccines were deployed. This was largely due to improved nutrition of children. Once feared, in the years 1807-1812 measles accounted for 11% of all deaths in Glasgow, Scotland. By 1960, even in the absence of a vaccine, childhood measles in England and Wales was only 2.4% and mortality fell by 0.030%.

Children still came down with typical childhood illnesses, including pertussis, whooping cough, measles, etc. but they were almost always relatively mild childhood diseases.

England began keeping mortality statistics on a national level in 1838. The US started in 1900 and showed dramatic declines in deaths from infectious diseases. For example, deaths from whooping cough had declined by more than 90 percent prior to the introduction of a vaccine in the mid-1940’s. Deaths from measles had declined by more than 98 percent before the introduction of a vaccine in 1963. The statistics show sharp downward trends at year 1900 but it is highly probably that, just like in the United Kingdom, an even earlier decline had already begun before the United States began to chart its national statistics.

Next: Part 3 – Polio

Disclaimer: I am a private citizen with no medical training. Like many, I decided to study the whole “vaccination” issue during the “Pandemic.” This article is largely drawn from the excellent book “Dissolving Illusions.” The website has many charts that demonstrate the decline in infectious diseases before the rollout of mass vaccination for children in the Western world. I encourage everyone to visit this site.

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.