eCite Digital Repository

Smallpox and Cowpox under the Southern Cross: The Smallpox Epidemic of 1789 and the Advent of Vaccination in Colonial Australia

Citation

Bennett, MJ, Smallpox and Cowpox under the Southern Cross: The Smallpox Epidemic of 1789 and the Advent of Vaccination in Colonial Australia, Bulletin of the History of Medicine, 83, (1) pp. 37-62. ISSN 0007-5140 (2009) [Refereed Article]


Preview
PDF
Restricted - Request a copy
295Kb
  

Copyright Statement

Copyright 2009 The Johns Hopkins University Press

Official URL: http://www.press.jhu.edu/journals/

DOI: doi:10.1353/bhm.0.0167

Abstract

In histories of smallpox and vaccination, little attention has been paid to their progress in the southern latitudes. In this paper, I focus on the appearance of smallpox around Sydney Cove in 1789 and the introduction of cowpox (vaccine) to New South Wales in 1804. I demonstrate the connections, historical and virological, between the two events and examine the role of variolation in the spread of smallpox and in anticipating vaccination. I argue that imported "variolous matter," perhaps obtained in Cape Town, may have been the source of infection in the catastrophic epidemic among the Aborigines in 1789. I likewise examine the means by which vaccine was brought to Australia in relation to comparable initiatives around the Indian Ocean. I assess the significance of the early history of vaccination in Australia in relation to subsequent developments and as a remarkable demonstration of the global reach of the new prophylactic.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:smallpox, vaccination, Jenner, Australia, Aborigines, Indian Ocean
Research Division:History and Archaeology
Research Group:Historical Studies
Research Field:Australian History (excl. Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander History)
Objective Division:Expanding Knowledge
Objective Group:Expanding Knowledge
Objective Field:Expanding Knowledge in History and Archaeology
Author:Bennett, MJ (Professor Michael Bennett)
ID Code:57003
Year Published:2009
Web of Science® Times Cited:13
Deposited By:History and Classics
Deposited On:2009-06-11
Last Modified:2012-03-01
Downloads:15 View Download Statistics

Repository Staff Only: item control page