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Penn-Trafford

Penn library book discussion will focus on 100th anniversary of Spanish Flu pandemic

Patrick Varine
| Thursday, May 10, 2018, 1:57 p.m.
Row upon row of cots occupied by influenza-stricken patients during the outbreak of 1918.
U.S. Naval Center
Row upon row of cots occupied by influenza-stricken patients during the outbreak of 1918.

Vaccines are available now, but even today, the prospect of catching the flu is still dangerous for young children and senior adults.

And yet the modern flu season isn't nearly as frightening as what happened a century ago this year, when the Spanish Flu of 1918 circled the globe, sickening 500 million people worldwide and killing between 20 and 50 million, including about 675,000 Americans, according to History.com.

On May 21, Penn Area Library officials will host a 6:30 p.m. discussion of author Laura Spinney's " Pale Rider: the Spanish Flu of 1918 and How It Changed the World ."

Spinney traces the influenza pandemic as it travels across the globe, exposing man's vulnerabilities, drawing on recent research in virology, epidemiology, psychology and economics.

Below, see a History Channel video outlining the basics of the 1918 pandemic:

Copies of the book are available at the library. There is no cost to attend, however seating is limited to 20 participants.

For more information, call 724-744-4414, ext. 101.

Patrick Varine is a Tribune-Review staff writer. Reach him at 724-850-2862, pvarine@tribweb.com or via Twitter @MurrysvilleStar.

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