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Owen County Historical Society: Community wasn’t immune to ravages of disease

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By Bonnie Strassell

Even into the 20th century, Owen countians were not immune to the “speckled monster.” 
It attacked young and old alike, and many did not survive its devastating assault. Through the 18th and 19th centuries, pioneer villages and towns were decimated by its onslaught, and many succumbed to the effects of this dreaded disease called smallpox.
Owen County records show that in December of 1902 a smallpox epidemic was raging in the area, and many died as it made its way from household to household.


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