The astonishing, hitherto unknown truths about a disease that transformed the United States at its birth
A horrifying epidemic of smallpox was sweeping across the Americas when the American Revolution began, and yet we know almost nothing about it. Elizabeth A. Fenn is the first historian to reveal how deeply…
Shepherd is reader supported. We may earn an affiliate commission when you buy through links on our website. (learn more)
Why read it?
2 authors picked Pox Americana as one of their favorite books. Why do they recommend it?
This is another book on disease and war and shows how smallpox was a lethal actor in the American Revolution. Smallpox gave the largely immune British forces an advantage over Americans, (white, Black, and Indian), who had never been exposed to the virus, which prompted General George Washington to order the inoculation of his troops. This was the first government immunization effort in American history. The book then follows the virus across the continent as it traveled with foreign traders and native peoples, devastating tribal populations from East to West.
Our community of 6,000+ authors has personally recommended 10 books like Pox Americana.