Disease in the Water: Typhoid Fever

Programs, Lectures, and Talks
Thursday, September 30, 2021
4:00 p.m.–4:45 p.m. EDT (UTC -4)


Illustrations of typhosus and e. coli

Detail of illustrations of bacillus coli and bacillus typhosus, which can cause typhoid fever, from the Hand Book of Pharmacy and Theraputics, circa 1919.

Science History Institute

Join us for a Varsity Tutors virtual class to learn about typhoid fever and the decision Philadelphians grappled with to save its citizens from the dreaded disease.

By 1896, Philadelphia was a bustling city full of opportunity; it was also horribly overcrowded. Along with a growing population and a booming industrial complex, the City of Brotherly Love was plagued by typhoid fever, which killed thousands of Philadelphians every year.

Nyomi Gonzalez, the Institute’s education and interpretation specialist, will lead this virtual class hosted by Varsity Tutors. Students will learn about typhoid fever and what politicians did to protect residents from it. They’ll also learn how to test their own water for issues like disease-causing bacteria and see what the results mean.