February 1918

Throughout the month there are reports of serious influenza cases, pneumonia and grippe. None of the reports fear an impending pandemic, and other outbreaks and health issues are more prominent concerns. The bolshevikis are in control of Russia, and prepare to finish their involvement in the war. The description of patriotic efforts are widespread and contrast with reports on the brutal tactics of the Germans.

Outbreaks of smallpox (February 26), scarlet fever (February 14 and 27) lead to schools closings. The month is full of reports of pneumonia: a popular truck driver succumb in Maui, Hawaii (February 15); numerous troops at Camp Cody, Deming, New Mexico (February 13); a report from Chicago that pneumonia has cause 45,000 deaths in the last ten years, and is the leading killer in between January and April (February 23). The (lack of) ventilation is the projected cause for the deaths in Chicago, and the close proximity of living is cited on February 18 and 25 as causing disease among the troops at the camps.

Influenza is very colorfully described in a report (February 8) from Holbrook, Arizona as "the disease more than any other that causes a man to hate himself." The incidence of influenza lags behind injuries in Pennsylvanias health report (February 2) and tuberculosis in the report of deaths from Michigan for December 1917 (February 6). The grip, remedies and the difference between colds are in almost every newspaper, and in specific reports on February 18 and 19.

The cold weather continues to grip the country (February 3 and 7), disrupting transportation and the supply of energy. New York harbor is blocked due to ice (February 7), the Brattleboro, Vermont fuel committee commands the local population for agreeing to a local ban on entertainment until the end if April to conserve fuel (February 11). 

The grip of the national authorities and local enforcement (sometimes unofficial) of sedition laws is evident. The Committee of Hundred bring sedition charges in Montana against a circuit court judge for uttering pro-german remarks (February 4). William Crouser was fined $44 for verbally abusing the Red Cross in Mantiwoc, Wisconsin (February 7). While in the UK Bertrand Russell is imprisoned for libel, claiming the US would occupy England and France after the war (February 10).

Washington's birthday is celebrated with 10,000 troops marching through New York City (February 22), The garment workers donate their wages for the day to the bond drive. On Lincoln's birthday Larabee's Flour compares President Wilson to the Great Emancipator, and wraps Larabee's mission of feeding the troops and achieving the peace together (February 12).