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Cold Comfort

some solace to know that all the efforts that have been made have perhaps been of some assistance.

October 7, 1918; Harold Rugg's journal:
In a.m., mama and I went after butternuts, and at 2:00 I went to Ludlow on train and then by stagecoach to Norwich. A lovely ride, as the autumn colors were wonderful. Find that there have been 14 deaths in Norwich to date from Spanish influenza. Clarence Gowdy, one of the mailmen, died today. Eight soldiers, four students, one faculty, and one townsman have succumbed.

October 8, 1918; from Harris Hatch to President Hopkins:
It was most thoughtful and kind of you to write us as you did in your letter of October 2nd. Mrs. Hatch and I both appreciate the attention.

We are in hope Tracy will not have the influenza and that if he does, everything will go well. We understood from his letters that there is quite a good deal of the epidemic in the College. Philadelphia is full of it, but so far it has not touched us.

October 13, 1918; Harold Rugg's journal:
Recitations began after a vacation of two weeks, during which time the boys have been drilling eight hours a day. Shall have to keep reference room open evenings now. I have been over to library every night the last two weeks except Saturday nights. Shall have to continue doing evening work because of the lack of student help.

October 14, 1918; Harold Rugg's journal:
Donald Powell, one of my advisees, returned today, and as his room had been given up I took him in for the night.

November 11, 1918; Harold Rugg's journal:
Wakened at 6:45 by whistles and bells announcing peace. Classes called off at 10:00 and SATC were given freedom at 3:00. An auto parade of 500 to 700 cars went past College Hall. It took over an hour for them to pass. I closed the library for two hours. The new news too good to be true.

This is not a European battlefield but the Dartmouth football field—the site of trench-digging exercises for members of the Student Army Training Corps. The fact that students were kept outside at such activities during the height of the flu epidemic was credited with keeping the number of cases down.

"The doctors stated that plenty of fresh air and outdoor work were the best antidotes for the disease, and I therefore arranged with Captain Patterson to put in practically the whole time from daylight until dark in military drill until October 10."
—President Hopkins

Lessons learned from 1918
Dr. Cleto DiGiovanni, a 1956 Dartmouth College graduate, is trying to determine what lessons the 1918 flu holds for us today. As part of his work with the Defense Threat Reduction Agency in the Department of Defense, he joined forces with several University of Michigan medical historians to investigate how some communities escaped the flu—suffering few cases and no more than one flu-related death in the fall of 1918.

They reported in the December 2006 issue of Emerging Infectious Diseases, a publication of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, that coordination among public agencies was essential to an effective public health response and

Above and below are four of the five Dartmouth students who died of flu—clockwise from the top left, Harold Mooney, Richard Campbell, Theodore Wadleigh, and Spencer Slawson. One member of the faculty also died of the flu.

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