Advertisements in December 1893 Chicago Medical Recorder
The December 1893 Chicago Medical Recorder included reports, articles and discussion proceedings on water and disease in Chicago. In addition, the journal contained a series of advertisements for water-related products, including disinfectants, bottled water, Labatt’s beer, and hydrochlorate of cocaine.
Official Directory of the World’s Fair, 1893
This excerpt from the official directory of the World’s Fair was part of the section on the Bureau of Public Comfort. It assured fairgoers that water for drinking fountains at the Fair was filtered or sterilized, showing a general lack of confidence in Chicago’s tap water to stave off disease.
Typhoid Fever and the Water Supply, 1902
By 1902, the opening of the Sanitary and Ship Canal had allowed for the permanent reversal of the Chicago River. As water flowed out of the lake in the river, it was assumed that the overall water supply for Chicago was improved. However, by the early twentieth century, scientists understood more clearly that bacteria contaminated water and caused diseases like cholera and typhoid. In this report by Edwin Oakes Jordan, a professor of bacteriology at the University of Chicago, filtration is raised as a means to eliminate bacteria that could not be tasted or smelled. Jordan argued that Chicago’s place as a rail center made the need for a safe water supply even more essential.
See Also: Public Health
Typhoid Deaths, 1870-1926
The director of the Sanitary and Ship Canal District stands before a graph of typhoid deaths in Chicago, 1870-1926. Deaths decreased over time, in part because of the opening of the new canal and the start of chlorination (1912).
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