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6 > Page 6 of Account of spasmodic cholera as it appeared in the city of Lexington in June 1833 / by Lunsford P. Yandell, M.D.

YANDELL on Spasmodic Cholera. It is common to speak of the epidemic as having, in this city, disregarded character and condition, and invaded all classes of the community indiscriminately. I have examin- ed the list of those who died during the first three weeks with special reference to this subject, and have come to a different conclusion. The number reported by the gentle- men who were at the trouble of visiting all the houses, is 381. Of these, 25 were lunatics, at the Asylum, 168 blacks, and 188 whites. It is unnecessary to speak of the liability of the first class to attacks of cholera. It is not too much to say, that there is every thing in their situation to predispose to it. The habits and condition of the black population in every country are much alike, and well known. Bond and free, they are generally filthy and careless, poor, and ignorant, and in want of many of the comforts of life, and nearly always live in low, damp, or ill ventilated houses. There are few exceptions to this rule. Thus more than half the victims were of the class who have been the great sufferers from cholera in all countries. From their own neglect in the first instance, and the difficulty of affording them the necessary aid afterwards, a large proportion of them when overtaken by the disease inevitably perish. Of the remaining number it may be affirmed, that few were free from some of the causes which strongly predispose to the disease. A great majority were either infirm from other affections, or old age, intemperate in the use of ardent spirits, or guilty of some excess, in eating, exercise, S/c. immediately before their attack. The three physicians who fell its victims had labored by night and by day, as well as neglected the early symptoms of their dis- ease. The few robust young persons who died were general- ly able to trace their attack to some indiscretion. And with all the general abundance of the land, it must be admitted that many of the whites themselves were badly fed, and miserably lodged-in low, crowded houses, surrounded by filth, and supplied with few of the comforts which the sick require. I saw an amount of squalid wretchedness during the prevalence of the epidemic, which I could hardly have 6