Skip to main content

Pandemics: Home

A guide to materials and resources in the USUHS Archives and the LRC relating to historical and contemporary pandemics.

Historical and Contemporary Pandemics

The USU Archives and the LRC collection have a number of items that relate to both historical and contemporary pandemics. These materials include books, military medical publications, and other items. 

About the USU Archives

The University Archives for the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences collects, preserves, and makes available rare university materials; historical military medical and public health collections; and personal papers of enduring value from administrators, faculty, and alumni for the research use of the university and the general public. The Archives collects manuscripts, oral histories, rare books, audio-visual materials, and artifacts relating to the history of the university and the history of military medicine.

The USU Archives Digital Collections

Related Institutions

The following are links to other institutions with collections and exhibits that complement the material in the USU Archives. 

National Museum of Health and Medicine

National Library of Medicine

National Archives and Records Administration

1918 Pandemic Flu (Spanish Flu)

Rare Book Collection

The links below are a selection of the books relating to the 1918-1920 Flu Pandemic that have been scanned by the Archives. The 1918 Flu was a deadly influenza pandemic that infected about a quarter of the Earth's population and killed between 17 million to 50 million people. An H1N1 virus, the 1918 Flu became known as the "Spanish Flu" in the media of the time: censors minimized the news of the virus from the United States, Germany, France, and the UK, leaving newspapers to present a story that the disease had started in Spain. 

The majority of these materials are general WWI-related items that discuss the pandemic and military medicine at the time in general. Other volumes can be viewed and downloaded by searching the Archives' digital collection under the heading Military Medical History Documents, and the rare book collection can be searched via the LRC Catalog

LRC Collection

The LRC Collection also contains material related to WWI and the Spanish Flu. The catalog records of selected materials are linked below. Additional material on this topic can be located by searching the LRC Catalog

SARS

SARS (Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome) is a viral respiratory disease that surfaced in the early 2000s. Over 8,000 people from 29 countries were infected, and at least 774 people died. No cases of this, the first SARS-CoV have been reported since 2004. A related strain, SARS-CoV-2, is the cause of COVID-19. 

The LRC Collection contains material related to the 2002-2004 SARS Outbreak. The catalog records of selected materials are linked below. Additional material on this topic can be located by searching the LRC Catalog

The Black Death

Rare Book Collection

The links below are a selection of the books relating to the Black Death, a pandemic that killed millions globally from roughly 1347-1351, that are held by the Archives. The bacterium Yersinia pestis is believed to have been the cause. The Black Death (also known as the Great Bubonic Plague, the Plague, the Black Plague, and the Pestilence) is estimated to have killed 30% to 60% of Europe's population, with the populations of some areas not recovering until the 19th century.

The rare book collection can be searched via the LRC Catalog

The LRC History Collection

The links below are a selection of the books relating to the Black Death that are held by the LRC History Collection

The History Collection can be searched via the LRC Catalog

LRC Collection

The LRC Collection also contains material related to the Black Death. The catalog records of selected materials are linked below. Additional material on this topic can be located by searching the LRC Catalog

Yellow Fever

Rare Book Collection

The links below are a selection of the books relating to Yellow Fever that have been scanned by the Archives. Yellow Fever is a viral disease caused by the bite of infected mosquitos. While a vaccine now exists, thousands of people still die from Yellow Fever every year, and prior to the vaccine's development, the disease killed hundreds of thousands. 

Other volumes can be viewed and downloaded by searching the Archives' digital collection under the heading Military Medical History Documents, and the rare book collection can be searched via the LRC Catalog

LRC Collections

The LRC Collection and History Collection also contain material related to Yellow Fever. The catalog records of selected materials are linked below. Additional material on this topic can be located by searching the LRC Catalog

Subject Guide

James A. Zimble Learning Resource Center • 4301 Jones Bridge Rd. Bethesda, MD 20814 • Main Number: 301-295-3189 • AMI Helpdesk: 301-295-3358