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The Contagious City
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The Contagious City: The Politics of Public Health in Early Philadelphia

Simon Finger


By the time William Penn was planning the colony that would come to be called Pennsylvania, with Philadelphia at its heart, Europeans on both sides of the ocean had long experience with the hazards of city life, disease the most terrifying among them. Drawing from those experiences, colonists hoped to create new urban forms that combined the commercial advantages of a seaport with the health benefits of the country. This book details how early Americans struggled to preserve their collective health against both the strange new perils of the colonial environment and the familiar dangers of the ... More

Keywords: Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, city hazards, disease, early Americans, colonial America, public health, population control, urban plan, public safety

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2012 Print ISBN-13: 9780801448935
Published to Cornell Scholarship Online: August 2016 DOI:10.7591/cornell/9780801448935.001.0001


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Simon Finger, author
Assistant Professor of Political Science, Temple University.