I just read that US smallpox vaccinations ended in 1972 when the disease was eradicated. Guess I was one of the last ones to have this scar on my shoulder?
Henry L. Hohl Elementary, April 1955: The first Houston-area students await the newly available Salk vaccine.
Needles aren’t fun, but they’re even less fun while wearing formalwear, like this group below.
Just like little Casey Carl Vaughn above, I, too, received an injection of the vaccine as a youngster. I imagine that’s also why you don’t have polio. Unless you do.
Below you’ll see a free clinic offered by the Houston health department in May of 1961. Residents lined up at the Minimax Store, where volunteers doled out 50,000 inoculations in one week. Ain’t nobody got time for paralysis.
Albert Sabin provided a cheaper alternative to Salk’s vaccine, by adding drops of vaccine to sugar cubes. No injection necessary.
This Houston nurse followed suit in 1962, adding drops of vaccine to sugar cubes.
But it was too little, too late for these polio-afflicted children in Philadelphia, shown way back in 1950 at a meeting with the chairman of the city’s March of Dimes organization. (Special Collections Research Center, Temple University Libraries). Sometimes timing is everything.
Below you can see celebrities like Grace Kelly helping with the effort.
Founded by President Franklin D. Roosevelt, as the National Center for Infantile Paralysis, it became known as the “March of Dimes” when the call went out for regular Americans to simply give a dime – ten cents – to fund research into a cure for polio. The call came from entertainer Eddie Cantor who mused, “Nearly everyone can send in a dime, or several dimes. However, it takes only ten dimes to make a dollar and if a million people send only one dime, the total will be $100,000.” The dimes poured in and by 1955, Dr. Jonas Salk developed the first polio vaccine. Eventually the disease was licked and the March of Dimes turned its focus to birth defects. –www.deborahnorville.com