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Re: Death on the Mississippi

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  • bjer50010
    ... That s what I thought but I figured there must be some dry areas? ;-) Guess not. ... Hence my point about the entire campaign being waged in that type of
    Message 1 of 74 , May 2, 2003
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      --- In civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com, "slippymississippi" <
      slippymississippi@y...> wrote:
      > --- In civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com, "bjer50010" <bjewell@i...> wrote:
      > > > I doubt that proximity to the river had any effect on morbidity
      > > > and mortality.
      > >
      > > Actually, Slippy, it may well have. Swampy low lying areas are
      > > perfect for diseases spread by insect vectors,
      > But you just described the entire state.

      That's what I thought but I figured there must be some dry areas? ;-)
      Guess not.

      > If Grant is in Grenada, he
      > is tromping through the Yazoo Delta swamps. If he's outside
      > Vicksburg, he's tromping through the Yazoo Delta swamps. Wherever
      > you go in Mississippi, you're in *some* kinda river delta:
      > Mississippi, Yazoo, Pearl, Big Black, Pascagoula, Tennessee...

      Hence my point about the entire campaign being waged in that type of
      terrain; even had he gone over"land", I gather.

      > Actually, the floods probably *reduced* the number of casualties
      > nearer to the river. Cholera-type diseases would be reduced because
      > you have a continuous introduction of fresh water to your supply.

      That's a good point about the flooding. It definitely could have
      reduced the casualties during the flooded season, but not as the waters
      started to recede. The flushing effect of the floods would be lost and
      the drying formerly flooded regions would become stagnant pools. Can't
      say I know when that was in 1863 though.

      > Malaria would be reduced because mosquito larvae require standing
      > water to mature.

      True. But as the floods receded and there was more standing water,
      there would have been an increase in the number of larvae and mature
      insects. So the casualities from disease may have gotten worse as the
      campaign wore on. You may be correct about earlier in the yr. however.
    • Will
      Thanks Dave. Good points to ponder. ~Will ... better
      Message 74 of 74 , May 6, 2003
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        Thanks Dave.
        Good points to ponder.
        --- In civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com, Dave Gorski <bigg@m...> wrote:
        > >
        > >Good points. I was thinking that long-term encampments would have
        > >better sanitary and shelter arrangements and the men would be
        > >rested than encampents of men campaigning.
        > Secretary Olmsted of the Sanitary Commission issued a
        > "Circular to the Colonels of the Army," in which he stated
        > that "It is well known that when a considerable body of men
        > have been living together in camp a few weeks a peculiar
        > subtle poison is generated..."
        > Another factor was that many soldiers were from rural areas
        > where they had not had exposure to common illnesses, and had
        > not built up any immunities. Groups in garrison were exposed to
        > and often died of childhood diseases.
        > Often soldiers who were hospitalized for wounds, died of some
        > disease that they had been exposed to while in the hospital,
        > especially typhoid.
        > Yet, another point is that a soldier on the move was likely to
        > have had occasion to have fresh fruits and vegetables than the
        > soldier stuck in camp for weeks on end. A better diet made
        > for a healthier soldier.
        > Regards, Dave Gorski
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