Vaccinating the Poor, Smallpox Epidemic, 1872 - stock photo
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Vaccinating the Poor, Smallpox Epidemic, 1872

Vaccinating the Poor, depicting smallpox vaccination of the poor in New York police station during the 1872 smallpox epidemic. A racially-mixed group of men, women, and children observe a physician as he vaccinates the tattooed left arm of a burly young man. In 1796 Edward Jenner, an English doctor, coined the word vaccination to describe his use of cowpox inoculation to obtain immunity to smallpox. Smallpox was a terrible disease, epidemics of which often had a mortality rate of 20% and left survivors disfigured. Jenner inoculated a boy with fluid obtained from a cowpox blister on the hand of a milk-maid. He later inoculated the boy with smallpox but found him to be immune. Vaccination soon became widespread and eradicated the disease in Europe and the US. SEE BV9758 for colorized version.

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