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Winter 2020

The lost history of polio at Washington State

The message was so important that it was repeated twice above the fold.

The February 8, 1928, issue of The Evergreen exclaimed on both sides of the masthead, “All college entertainment features, athletic contests and social events have been cancelled until further notice is given as a precaution against the spread of infantile paralysis.”

Infantile paralysis is an old synonym for poliomyelitis, or polio, a viral disease that causes muscle pain, weakness, stiffness, and paralysis. At one time, it was among the most feared diseases in the United States.

In early 1928, a student at Washington State College died from the disease, and the college … » More …