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Infectious Disease in 19th Century Glasgow

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In 1868 local printed and photographer Thomas Annan was commissioned by The City of Glasgow Improvement Trust to take pictures of some of the slum areas prior to demolition. This is claimed to be one of the first times photography was used as documentary evidence and his striking images illustrate glasgow for the poorest classes as it was in incredible detail!

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 In 2017 Glasgow City Heritage Trust ran a series of lectures and engagement events focused on the health of Glasgow over the last 200 years.  One of these events included talks from colleagues from the University of Strathclyde and the Glasgow School of Art.  

Follow the link to find out more about this engagement project and a host of historical resources. 

 

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Resources and personal testimony focused on the design and presenting of the introductory lesson for the Curriculum for Excellence Resource - History & Healthcare school program.

 

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The Glasgow Scavengers were employed by the Cleansing Department of the Police Commission to manage the streets of the city. This is an article from the North British Daily Mail, highlighting the work of of the Scavengers, published on 4 December 1869.

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John Frederic Bateman was the engineer for the Loch Katrine water project. These are some extracts from a speech that he made to a meeting of engineers and scientists in Aberdeen in September 1859

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A line graph and bar chart depicting the population growth in Glasgow in the 19th century, in relation to the spread of infectious diseases.

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Two graphs depicting the number of cholera cases reported in London and Scotland by November 1848.

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The Glasgow Story is a collection of material from some of Scotland's best writers, and illustrated with thousands of images from the collections of the city's world-famous libraries, museums and universities. The link to the following pages explores the impact on Glasgow of Irish immigration and its effects upon public health.

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Website explaining the effect of industrialisation and urbanisation on health in Glasgow during the Victorian period. It highlights the cholera epidemics of 1832 and 1848 and the rise of public health as a response to the problem of disease.

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Information and interactive game about John Snow and the Borad Street Pump, created by The Science Museum in 2004

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Dr John Sutherland was a physician and promoter of sanitary science. In 1848 he became an inspector under the first Board of Health for the city and conducted several special enquiries. His description of Glasgow demonstrates in detail why cholera spread so quickly after the outbreaks in 1832 and 1848. These are some extracts:

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John Simon was the first Medical Officer of Health for the city of London. He was appointed in 1848 to deal with the threat of cholera and other public health issues. Below are some extracts from his annual reports. They highlight the main public health problems facing London in the 19th century and his suggestions as to how they might be tackled.

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