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1918 and the Spanish Flu Pandemic


On September 19, 1918, Toledoans were “cautioned to take the strictest precaution to prevent Spanish influenza getting even a toe-hold in Toledo”. (Toledo News Bee Sept 19, 1918)


Even though the article stated there had been no fatalities in Toledo to that point, a search of the newspaper in months prior finds numerous deaths of local citizens from pneumonia and other respiratory infections that, in retrospect, may have been the first signs that the flu had already arrived.

The similarities to COVID 19 in 2020 are stunning. Click the photo below to check out articles from the Toledo News Bee in 1918, that document how the city and this department were affected by the deadly virus.

Click on the article to discover how the City of Toledo, the Toledo Police Department, and the world responded to the 1918 Spanish Flu pandemic.

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