Two words I hear thrown about in regards to much of what is happening now in 2020 are "unprecedented" and "unchartered." While those appear to be convenient words as we flounder about looking for solutions to this virus epidemic, they are incorrect when applied to our response to this horrid coronavirus. There is a precedence. We have chartered a path before, although it was in vastly different times.
I'm talking the Influenza Epidemic of 1918. Three years ago I uncovered a fascinating detail when I was working on a project about a school in western North Carolina. Deep inside a box labeled principal's reports in the archives in Raleigh, my researcher, Diane Richard of Mosaic Research and Project Management, found, copied, and sent me the mundane, run of the mill school year reports I requested. Like this one:
I read it with casual interest, just like I read all the other end-of-year reports pertinent to the dates of this Spring Creek School. Further down the page I found this:
Later in the report, Principal Woody penned in the details: school that year ran from August 5, 1918 to March 21, 1919.
Her closing remarks:
Of course I included this in the book I wrote with Jasper Reese, Back in the Time: Medicine, Education and Life in the Isolation of Western North Carolina's Spring Creek.
Don't tell me the children of this calamity have no future. They will be strong. They will learn to overcome. Just like their ancestors.
Catch of the day,