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Precautions Against Fever

Sources & Images
Source Name Image(s)
CollectionNational Archives and Records Administration: Manning Collection, RG217 view image
CollectionNational Archives and Records Administration: Manning Collection, RG217 view image
Document Information
Date August 9, 1798
Author Name John Harris (primary) Location: Philadelphia
Recipient Name James McHenry (primary)
Summary Lists requirements for combating and preventing contagious fever spreading through city. Proposed moving office to Lamberton, Pennsylvania;
Document Format Autograph Letter Signed
Document Notes [not available]
Content Notes [not available]
Related Persons/Groups James McHenry; John Harris; clerks; accountants; officers; keeper military stores; Secretary of War; guard; non commissioned officers; family; ;
Related Places Lamberton; Philadelphia; Pennsylvania; ;
Keywords yellow fever epidemic; alarming reports; public property; clothing; arms; accoutrements; transportation by water; transportation by land; disease; ;
Key Phrases [not available]

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John Harris to the Secretary of War 9 August 1790
Mr Hodgdon to make me an immediate report on the subject of the within letter
James McHenry
The Honorable The Secretary of War
War Department
Philada" Augt 9 179--
The Honorable,
The Secretary of War,
In consequence of the alarming Reports
of a very malignant contagious Fever (which seems to baffle the whole
of the Physician[s] it evade[s] every medical application) prevailing and
spreading in different parts of this City & ---banks.--It take this
early period of informing you Sir, that it still will be necessa-
ry to have such immediate arrangements made as will
effectively secure the public property. and at the same
time enable me to make such deliveries as the nature of the
care may require during the Epidemic in safety to myself [blacks]
& laborers. - To effect this I would suggest that [undecipherable]
Articles [or] will be immediately applied to the Army and [ ]
ing practices such as Clothing, Arms & [ Accoutrements? ]. Camp Equip-
page de. -- should be transported to Lamberton, where there is a
store under the occupancy of the United States, which Transpor-
tation will be cheap, as a Shallop may load at one Store,
& unload at the other. neither will it much affect / if any/ the
Transportation by Land, as the Waggons in coming in from the
Country would rather go into a healthy part of that an infected
one. as soon as they know of any business at Trenton or Lamber-
ton they would very readily proceed thither particularly as nothing
would be done in the City: -- Transportation by Water
will be suspended if the Epidemic rages:- I hope Sir, that some
thing of this kind will be speedily adopted:. that we may not have arrangements toi make when it will be too late: as the circumstances of the disease may render it -- In order
to secure the remaining store. I would propose having one
of our faithful men, who have for a number of years-
been employed in the business, to regularly open, air & Fumigate
the General Apartments, together with a Guard of three under
the direction of a faithful non-Commissioned Officer, which
Guard should be Stationary at the main Store. _____
Something of this, Sir, must shortly take place -
as self-preservation seems to be the predominant principle of
the [ ] - ,myself - and in fact of every person employed in this
Department. I consider my self exposed in going to do return-
ing from the store. I have likewise a family which I
must keep as secure as possible from danger of this kind --
I this would be out of my power of my business calls me
into infected [ ] while i[ ng] my duty. -----
Depend on it, Sir. That the alarm, and (from the information which I have been able to organise) the message of it, is greater that in either 1793 or '97 -
I submit the business, Sir, to your decision
I am Sir,
Your most [ ] [ ]
Mr. Harris
Keeper [ ] & [ ]