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January 1, 1919

115 North Oxford Street

Los Angeles, California

Dear Miss Jeannie,

Nineteen messages to you from the little “white haired gal”.

I wonder if I’ve wished you all the good wishes in these nineteen years?

At any rate you have received about all the best in life haven’t you? I’m going to wish another one for you. That you may come to the land of wonders, my dear California, this year 1919.

In these days of reconstruction I find it difficult to adjust myself gracefully, to the ever changing conditions.

Last year my dear Joe came out to us, a very sick man and I was by his bedside constantly until he passed away September 6. After my return from El Paso, I started in school and in a few days the entire city was closed by the influenza epidemic.(1)

I’ve taught twenty days in all. Just a little war work, a little work at the Normal School and much wasting of time, expecting to be called to school any day.

I hope to hear from you soon, telling me all about yourself and your family. Are Georgia and the son (Will?) at home?

As much as I enjoy living in the land of sunshine, I shall never cease to long for my first friends of dear old Kentucky.

I’m sending you a paper, giving some idea of what the Rose Tournament was like today. Rather a poor picture for such a gorgeous affair.

With many good wishes for a happy bright year.

Most sincerely,

Elizabeth Page

Spanish Flu: The 1918 influenza pandemic was the most severe pandemic in recent history. It was caused by an H1N1 virus with genes of avian origin. Although there is not universal consensus regarding where the virus originated, it spread worldwide during 1918-1919. In the United States, it was first identified in military personnel in spring 1918.

It is estimated that about 500 million people or one-third of the world’s population became infected with this virus. The number of deaths was estimated to be at least 50 million worldwide with about 675,000 occurring in the United States. Mortality was high in people younger than 5 years old, 20-40 years old, and 65 years and older. The high mortality in healthy people, including those in the 20-40 year age group, was a unique feature of this pandemic. (Source: CDC)


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