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In Their Own Words

August 26, 1738

Fear of Smallpox Recorded

Trustees’ secretary William Stephens in Savannah wrote in his journal of fears of an epidemic in South Carolina:

“… After frequent Advices from Charles-Town of the terrible Havock which the Small-Pox made in Carolina, carrying off a great Number of People, both white and black; by a Boat arrived from thence this Morning, we farther heard, that a new Distemper was spreading itself among them, which was thought epidemical, if not contagious; seizing People in the Head, who first swelled in that Part, and soon dropped down dead… .”

Source: William Stephens, A Journal of the Proceeding in Georgia ([no city cited]: Readex Microprint Corporation, 1966), Vol. I, p. 271.