London, Being The Densest Settlement On The Planet With 2.5 Million People Into 30 Square Miles
1586 WordsDec 2, 20157 Pages
London, being the densest settlement on the planet with 2.5 million people into 30 square miles, was emerging as the most populated urban metropolitan in the mid 19th century. Although, London started enjoying the fruits, it was not prepared to face the challenges of the urbanization. It was lacking the infrastructure necessary to support dense civilization like the garbage disposal, clean water supply, sewers, public health care etc. In the absence of an efficient sewage system, people were dumping their human waste into the cesspools located in the basement of their houses. As a result of accumulation of human excreta up to a few feet in some instances, London had become incredibly offensive and foul smelling city to walk around. The…show more content…
Cholera was causing massive evacuation of water out of the body resulting into the death within 48 hours of initiation of the symptoms. Nobody knew how the disease was spreading and how to cure it. As the epidemic started, many were spurred in the actions and started entertaining the different theories regarding the disease; mainly amongst them were Contagion and Miasma theory. However, a doctor by profession-John Snow, based on his previous studies on the cholera and his interest in the anesthesia, was strongly convinced that the origin and spread of cholera were other than the theories in speculation. He observed that the physicians treating the patients in close proximity remained unaffected evidently ruled out the contagion theory. During his in-depth investigation resulting in mapping of the houses and dead people, he found that habitants of certain buildings who shared the same demographic environment and air to breath, however different water supply, have remarkable difference in the mortality.
Dr. Snow’s idea, water being the source of the disease, was initially dismissed by the entire medical and scientific community in the London and so did by Reverend Henry Whitehead, an Anglican curate, who went out into the teeth of the epidemic to comfort his parishioners and got deeply involved into the investigation of this deadly outbreak. By performing thorough epidemiological investigation using the death