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People's Health

People's Health

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A History of Public Health in Minnesota

Author Philip Jordan

Minnesota Historical Society Press ()


In The People’s Health, social historian Philip D. Jordan tells the absorbing story of those who championed the long campaign to establish the Minnesota Department of Public Health and bring the resources of the state into the battle against disease. Drawing on memoirs, newspapers, interviews, and ordinances, as well as State Board of Health publications and memos, Jordan presents a vivid and engrossing history of town and country, of lumber camp and Indian reservation, of 19th century challenges and 20th century aspirations. The struggle for sanitary sewage disposal, the fight for pure food and water, and the development of programs to protect the health of mothers and infants, school children and workers, the aged, and the mentally ill—all are outlined in fascinating detail. Jordan also explores the devastating effects of epidemics like the 1918–19 influenza outbreak and diseases such as tuberculosis, smallpox, polio, and STDs on the shape of the state’s public health program and on the people of Minnesota.

Author information

Philip D. Jordan, former professor of history at the University of Minnesota, wrote widely in social history and the history of medicine.

  • 540 pages
  • 6 x 9 inches
  • ISBN: 9780873515344

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