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In Their Own Words

July 28, 1742

Unknown Illness Recorded

William Stephens described an unknown malady afflicting the Georgia colonists:

“What affected us most at present, was to see a grievous Sickness encreasing [sic], many falling down daily ill in Feavers [sic]; and to add to our Calamity, not one to be found capable of administering proper Remedies. Dr. Graham from his plantation was so kind to come today, and see us, tho very weak himself, by reason of the like feaver Seizing him a while past, which he has not yet so masterd [sic], but a fit of it returns once in 24 hours; and his affairs at home will not admit of his absence long from thence. This Sickness comes on at first generally with such a violent shock, that the Patient can scarcely be thought able to sustain it many hours, till an Intermission is found, and thereafter it usually becomes periodical, which for want of good assistance, wears away the Person to the Utmost weakness even to the Grave, tho it has not hitherto proved very Mortal.”

Source: E. Merton Coulter (ed.), The Journal of William Stephens, 1741-1743 (Athens: University of Georgia Press, 1959), p. 114.