Aix-les-Bains France, National Library of Medicine
pandemic of 1918 was one of the worst disease outbreaks in human
history. The best evidence indicates
that this disaster began at Camp Funston, an
army base in Kansas on March 8, 1918.
An influenza virus mutated into a lethal strain. It arrived in Europe
on American troop ships in early April 1918, and perhaps mutated again. The
epidemic traveled fast in three waves of infection, reaching almost every
corner of the world by the spring of 1919, when the virus played itself out.
over 20 million people in the span of a year.
This was more than twice the number of people who died in the horrific
battles of World War I.