This project is designed to involve students in contributing historical materials about tuberculosis, which accounted for more deaths than any other cause during the late nineteenth century. Commonly known as “consumption” in that era, this disease exerted devastating effects across American society, with proportionally higher death rates among racial minorities, disadvantaged social classes, the urban poor, and populations in coal mining regions. By telling the stories of individual victims, derived from obituaries and death notices published in American newspapers, this project beings an innovative approach to documenting the impact of disease in American history.  For more information, select one of these options:

  • Search newspaper records and contribute information
  • View available information about victims and disease
  • Prepare a history of tuberculosis in your community
  • Read more about the history of tuberculosis
  • Contact project team with questions and suggestions

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