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1918

  • We will never know the full extent of the 1918 flu pandemic in North Dakota. The virus hit the state at a time of poor public health administration, with no state health department. The official death count of 1,378 people is almost certainly an undercount. One estimate in recent years put the death toll at more than 5,100 North Dakotans.
  • North Dakotans took many steps to fight the 1918 flu pandemic. Bismarck had a mask mandate for waitresses and other food handlers. Schools and businesses around the state closed – some for months. There was even a vaccine, though it turned out to be useless.
  • Somehow North Dakota’s State Penitentiary managed to keep the flu epidemic from getting inside for the entire year of 1918, but that didn’t last.The flu…
  • In 1919, North Dakota's legislature pressed on with business despite the flu pandemic. It was a p[particularly historic session. The populist Nonpartisan…
  • School closures have long been a measure aimed at slowing epidemics in North Dakota. Schools closed for weeks, even months due to outbreaks of disease.…
  • Not everybody went along with mandates meant to curb the 1918 flu pandemic. Bismarck had a mask mandate for waitresses and others handling food. The city…
  • The 1918 influenza pandemic emerged in North Dakota weeks before the holiday season. Communities locked down, closing schools, churches, theaters and…
  • Voting in the November general election was a real concern among North Dakota residents during the 1918 flu pandemic. Authorities estimated the state had…
  • Communities locked down when the 1918 influenza pandemic emerged in North Dakota. The outbreak of so-called “Spanish flu” shuttered most aspects of daily…
  • April 6, 1918 marked the one year anniversary of America’s entrance into the Great War. In many of North Dakota’s towns and cities, impressive…