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How America Avoided A Plague Epidemic

National Archives
San Francisco wharves ca. 1900.

Bubonic plague in California?  It happened, more than a century ago. 

The first case showed up in San Francisco's Chinatown in 1900 and was quickly confirmed.  But not by authorities, who denied the existence of the disease for a full two years. 

Then it fell on health workers to address the outbreak and keep it from spreading.  David Randall tells the story in the book Black Death at the Golden Gate: The Race to Save America from the Bubonic Plague.  The author joins us with the gory details of disease origins and ultimate remedies. 

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The Jefferson Exchange is Jefferson Public Radio's daily news program focused on issues, people and events across Southern Oregon and Northern California. Angela Decker is the program's senior producer, Charlie Zimmermann is the assistant producer, and Geoffrey Riley hosts the show.