We’ve Been Here Before

A series of programs that examine the lessons of history, in partnership with the public libraries in Atchison, Basehor, Bonner Springs, Lansing, Leavenworth, Linwood and Tonganoxie.

And Here We Are Now: Covid-19

We have explored how the country dealt with the 1918 Pandemic, and how mass vaccinations eradicated polio in the U.S. in the 1950s. We are now in the midst of conquering Covid-19 with mass vaccinations. The information about the virus and the vaccines has been confusing since the pandemic began over a year ago. On Wednesday, April 21, a panel of experts discussed of the latest information on the vaccine rollout in Kansas and medical concerns with the virus and the vaccine, moderated by Ken Miller, Public Information Officer for the City of Lansing:

  • Dr. Lee Norman, Director of the Kansas Department of Health and Environment
  • Sabato Sisillo, M.D., Pulmonologist and Medical Director at Providence Medical Center
  • Prashanth Katrapati, M.D., Cardiologist and Medical Director at Saint John Hospital

The Polio Vaccine

We can learn a lot from history, if we choose to. Mass vaccinations in the 1950s helped eradicate polio from the united State. This program was presented on Wednesday, Mar. 24, 2021 with a discussion on how we conquered this crippling disease 70 years ago with an expert panel including:

  • René F. Najera, Dr.PH, Editor, History of Vaccines, College of Physicians of Philadelphia
  • Chris Crenner, M.D., Ph.D., Hudson-Major Professor and Chair at the University of Kansas Medical Center
  • Carl Chinnery, a Past District Governor from District 6040 and member of the Lee’s Summit Rotary Club
  • Jim Arnett, Rotary District 5710 Polio Chairman and spouse of a polio survivor of Kansas City’s 1946 Polio Epidemic.

Learn More About Polio and Mass Vaccinations

Pakistan’s Polio Playbook Has Lessons For Its COVID-19 Vaccine Rollout

Eisenhower Library: Jonas Salk and Polio Vaccine

Mütter Museum – History of Vaccines Exhibition

Mütter Museum – Going Viral: Infection Through the Ages

Polio Vaccine Timeline

A Candle Against the Dark – The story of one Kansas City family’s experience with polio in 1942

Global Polio Eradication Initiative

Rotary International End Polio Now

The 1918 Pandemic

They say history doesn’t repeat itself, but that it rhymes. This past year was an exceptional echo. In 1918-1919, our nation weathered and survived a pandemic that claimed over 600,000 lives in the United States.  Explore what we can learn from this moment in U.S. history with Lora Vogt of the National WWI Museum and Memorial and Nancy Bristow, author and History Chair at the University of Puget Sound, for a discussion on the 1918 flu pandemic moderated by Rimsie McConiga of the Platte County Citizen.

This program was presented on Wednesday, Feb. 10, 2021 in partnership with the public libraries in Atchison, Basehor, Bonner Springs, Lansing, Leavenworth, Linwood and Tonganoxie.

Learn More About the 1918 Pandemic in Kansas

Pandemic-related books in the NEXT Search Catalog

Leavenworth Times Articles from the Kansas Room (Click on article to enlarge)


Additional articles

“Leavenworth During the 1918 Spanish Influenza,” Brown, Mary Ann. Leavenworth Convention and Visitors Bureau, visitleavenworthks.com/visitors/page/blog. (Leavenworth, Kan.), 11 Apr. 2020.

“May Close All Churches and Schools Here,” “Kansans Die of ‘Flu’,” “Go Under Quarantine,” The Topeka state journal. (Topeka, Kan.), 08 Oct. 1918.

“Facts and Figures of ‘Flu’,” The Liberal democrat. (Liberal, Kan.), 05 Feb. 1920.

“Rebound in Flu Shown in State Reports Today,” The Topeka state journal. (Topeka, Kan.), 06 Feb. 1920.

Silent film: Dr. Wise on Influenza (British Film Institute, 1919)