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American history
children's 8-12
An American Plague: The True and Terrifying Story of the Yellow Fever Epidemic of 1793
 
 
Author
Jim Murphy.
Publisher Clarion  
Format hardcover
Product Dimensions 9.75 x 7.25 x 0.7 inches
ISBN 9780395776087
Pages/Publication Date 165/2003
Daedalus Item Code 33439
This item is not available.
Description
(Boston Globe–Horn Book Award Winner; National Book Award Finalist; and a Newbery Honor Book) This illustrated history by the author of The Great Fire takes readers 10 and up back to 1793, when Philadelphia was the largest city in North America and the capital of the new United States. The city's residents fled in fear from an epidemic of yellow fever, a disease with an unknown origin and—even today—no cure. By the time it subsided, four to five thousand people had died, the state government essentially did not exist, and even Congress had been suspended. Jim Murphy renders the devastating course of the epidemic and the conditions of the time in a vivid, fast-moving narrative, relating the actions of Benjamin Rush, the most famous doctor in the country; George Washington, determined to hold the U.S. together; and the heroic role that free black Philadelphians played in saving their city.

"Nobody does juvenile nonfiction better than Murphy. Here, in his usual transparently clear and well-paced prose, he tells the story of the yellow fever outbreak that paralyzed Philadelphia in 1793, when that city was the nation's capital. There are enough gruesome medical details to satisfy even the most ghoulish tastes, but also plenty of serious history, including a moving account of the largely unappreciated volunteer work of members of the Free African Society (Murphy calls them a 'battalion of heroes')."—Washington Post

 
 
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