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Fort Worth Flashback: Polio was one of the most feared diseases

Posted Oct. 28, 2012

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From the 1930s to the 1950s, in response to the rising epidemic of paralytic poliomyelitis (polio), Texas children were routinely vaccinated.

The disease threatened the lives of children and adults in the United States, especially in the South, arousing the same kind of fear more recently associated with AIDS and other dread diseases.

The number of polio victims in the immediate post-World War II years increased substantially. In 1945 there were just under 1,000 new cases of polio in Texas. In 1948 the number jumped to 1,765, with notable hotspots being Houston and the Rio Grande Valley. In 1949 the total again increased to 2,355 and stayed over 2,000 for every year but one until 1955, the year the Salk vaccine was released.

The Fort Worth Library has approximately 10,000 items pertaining to the history of Fort Worth and Tarrant County. These items include city and county government documents, newspapers, directories, cemetery association records, maps as well as popular and scholarly books written by local authors or about local subjects. To learn more, call 817-392-7740 or email the Genealogy, History and Archives Section.

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Shaping Your Policy and Company Culture with Employee Handbooks: 11:30 a.m. May 28, 2019; James Guinn Entrepreneurial Campus, 1150 South Freeway.
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Operations Committee Meeting: 12:40 p.m. May 28, 2019; DFW Airport Headquarters Building, Board Room, 2400 Aviation Drive.
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City Council Called Special Meeting: 1 p.m. May 28, 2019; City Council Chamber, City Hall, 200 Texas St.
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Finance/Audit Committee Meeting: 1 p.m. May 28, 2019; DFW Airport Headquarters Building, Board Room, 2400 Aviation Drive.
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Concessions/Commercial Development Committee Meeting: 1:10 p.m. May 28, 2019; DFW Airport Headquarters Building, Board Room, 2400 Aviation Drive.
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Executive Compensation Committee Meeting: 1:20 p.m. May 28, 2019; DFW Airport Headquarters Building, Board Room, 2400 Aviation Drive.
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Canceled City Council Work Session : 3 p.m. May 28, 2019; City Council Conference Room 290, Second Floor, City Hall, 200 Texas Street.

Civil Service Commission Meeting: 6 p.m. May 28, 2019; Bob Bolen Public Safety Complex, Auditorium, 505 W. Felix St.
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Your Historic and Replacement Windows Workshop: 6 p.m. May 28, 2019; Hazel Harvey Peace Center for Neighborhoods, 818 Misouri Ave.

Canceled City Council Meeting: 7 p.m. May 28, 2019; City Council Chambers, Second Floor, City Hall, 200 Texas Street.

Fort Worth Sports Authority Board Meeting: 2 p.m. May 29, 2019; Fort Worth Convention Center, Executive Board Room, 1201 Houston Street.
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Carroll Street Intersections Project Meeting: 6 p.m. May 29, 2019; University of North Texas Health Science Center, Carl E. Everett Education & Administration Building, Room 506, 3500 Camp Bowie Boulevard.

Dallas Fort Worth International Airport Board Meeting: 8:30 a.m. May 30, 2019; DFW Airport Headquarters Building, Board Room, 2400 Aviation Drive.
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South Hills Street Maintenance Project Meeting: 6 p.m. May 30, 2019; South Hills Christian Church, 3200 Bilglade Road.

Deferred Compensation Committee Meeting: 9 a.m. May 31, 2019; Fort Worth Credit Union Board Room, 2309 Montgomery St.
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