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The Hobart Typhoid Epidemic of 1887-88


Kellaway, RG, The Hobart Typhoid Epidemic of 1887-88, Social Science & Medicine, 29, (8) pp. 953-958. ISSN 0277-9536 (1989) [Refereed Article]

DOI: doi:10.1016/0277-9536(89)90050-6


Typhoid fever records for Hobart during the nineteenth century are examined and the summer of 1887/88 identified as the second year of a 5 year epidemic cycle. Three factors are used to explain the change from endemic to epidemic typhoid in the 1880s. Firstly, there was a sequence of hot, dry summers that affected water quality and the amount of water available for the cleansing of street gutters. Secondly, there were changes to the system of disposal of excrement from cesspits to poorly organised pail and single pan schemes which led to the casual disposal of sewerage in the street gutters. Thirdly the population increase of the 1880s followed 25 years of stagnation and led to overcrowding in existing, often deteriorated buildings and the placement of new dwellings on small internal allotments.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:Hobart, Tasmania, typhoid epidemic, sanitation, historic reconstruction
Research Division:Human Society
Research Group:Human geography
Research Field:Social geography
Objective Division:Culture and Society
Objective Group:Other culture and society
Objective Field:Other culture and society not elsewhere classified
UTAS Author:Kellaway, RG (Dr Roger Kellaway)
ID Code:73707
Year Published:1989
Web of Science® Times Cited:1
Deposited By:Geography and Environmental Studies
Deposited On:2011-10-24
Last Modified:2017-12-08

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