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eases of this section of Nebraska, I can only state that reliable statistics cannot be had; but information from old inhabitants and my own observations, teach the superior advantages of this climate for invalids, especially those prone to pulmonary diseases, over the less dry and lower regions East.
Some reasons for the above conclusions are as follows:
1st. The altitude, 1266 ft.
2d. The prevailing winds N. W. and S. W. and dry.
3d. Dry soil, somewhat sandy in the valley.
4th. The large proportion of sunshiny days: Summer 72, autumn 72, winter 70, spring 62 days. The temperature thoughout the year varies considerably, ranging from 96° above to 10° below zero, though the thermometer only reached the latter figure twice during the past winter, and the observations were taken at 7 A. M; while the high temperature was taken at 3 P. M. in July. The record of the thermometer taken the past winter at 7 o'clock A. M. on the bluff north of Fremont shows that the temperature was below zero in December twice, in January seven times, in February four times-only thirteen times in 90 days. Epidemics are unknown. All zymotic diseases are of a milder type and more amenable to treatment than in the army or in the East. Phthisis has not been known to originate here except in those of inherited tendency, and at least 90 per cent of consumptives who have come to this climate from the East have been benefited if not cured, and there is no known instance of any being made worse.
E. VAN BUREN.
Dr. LIVINGSTON, of Cass County, remarks:This county is situated immediately south of parallel 41° north, and is bounded on the north by the Platte River, on the east by the Missouri, on the south by the south boundary of Township Ten, and on the west by Saunders and Lancaster Counties.
Its hydrography is intimated by the above boundaries. On the north and east it is somewhat broken by small streams flowing into the Platte and the Missouri Rivers; along the south boundary the Weeping-water River runs east to the Missouri, receiving many small streamlets in its course.
There is a large amount of river bottom along the streams named, which are all swift in current. There is no marshy soil except in very wet weather in a few sloughs scattered through the county.
The altitude above the sea is 1045 feet. Population 15,000, composed principally of Americans, some German, and a few Irish settlements; the occupation is principally farming. There are several villages. The principal town is Plattsmouth, situated, as its name indicates, near the confluence of the Platte and Missouri. The surface is rolling prairie, about one-half of which is culti vated; there is little or no timber, except along the streams named, which are pretty thoroughly fringed with oak, walnut, hickory, etc.
The geological formation is the upper carboniferous. The soil in the bottoms is sandy on the prairies, rich loam overlying lime. stone, except on the northwest portion, where a ferruginous dark sandstone is found.
The water is obtained principally from springs and wells, and is considered remarkably pure and good. In the towns a great deal of cistern water is collected and used.
FEVERS-Intermittent and remittent fevers make their appearance usually about July, in sporadic cases, and never in any large numbers.
Typhus fever has never been seen; typhoid fever occurs occasionally in the neighborhood of newly broken ground. Smallpox has not been seen since 1870, when thirteen cases occurred, all recovering. Vaccination is, through the influence of physicians, very generally performed.
Measles occurred here this spring in a very mild form, requiring little treatment.
Phthisis pulmonalis has never originated here, and persons who have come here with it are generally benefited.
Pneumonia is not infrequent in the winter months, and sometimes very severe.
Occasionally when the summer months are very dry, diarrhoea and dysentery prevail, but are not very fatal.
Very few cases of diphtheria occur; I have not seen one in the last year.
Croup in the winter season occasionally claims its victim, although it is rare.
Erysipelas has affected a few persons in the past year, but it was generally only in cases who were predisposed to it, and who had suffered attacks formerly.
Cholera infantum affects children in the stage of dentition during the hot summer months, but for the last three years has not been fatal.
Rheumatism was more prevalent in the winter of 1873 than I remember it to have been in fourteen years.
Capillary bronchitis, especially in children, has been observed during the prevalence of pneumonia, but never as an epidemic, the cases being isolated, occurring at intervals.
Uterine displacements are more common than I have observed them at other points; these are probably provoked by over-exertion in drawing water from our deep wells.
Labor is seldom complicated with any difficulties.
Puerperal peritonitis prevailed to a small extent this winter, about one-fourth of the cases perishing.
I append hereto tables heretofore mentioned in regard to prevalent diseases in Omaha.
Also tables of mortality rate for year ending July 31st, 1874. Omaha being the only city where a register has been kept for the period of one year, it is the best I can do, and will serve in a slight degree to substantiate the facts reported above. Omaha has a population of upwards of 20,000; is situated on the west bank of the Missouri River, in latitude 41° 15' 43", longitude 95° 55' 47" west from Greenwich. The elevation above the level of the sea is 996 feet.
TABLE NO. 1.—Table showing Death-rates per thousand of Inhabitants in following named Cities for the year 1873.
30.3 27.5 24.8 30.2 25.9 22.4
12.9 21.9 20.3 35.8 22.8 28.4 23.9 25.2 20.3 27.9
I subjoin a table showing the relative prevalence of the different classes of diseases as appearing in several of the above-named cities.
14.3 16.6 12.9 11.7 10.7 10.6
4.1 4.9 4.3 4.6
40.3 38.3 38.9 25.3 36.2 38.8 37.3 32.1
25.8 26.6 24.9 25. 22.6 32.3 34.9 31.0 37.8 31.8 18.8 36.2 14.3 13.5 16.7 11.7 17.4 14.4 14 4 20.9 12.8 17.6 18.5 20.2
36.9 34.9 41.6 33.4 8.6 12.9 17.2 6.2
No. 3.-Comparative Table of Deaths from various diseases.
This table shows the comparative death-rate of sixteen cities. It will be observed that that of Omaha is less than half as great as many of the larger cities.
TABLE No. 2.
Class I.-ZYMOTIC DISEASES.
During the summer of 1874 the weather was unusually hot, the thermometer standing as high as 98° to 120° in the shade for several days together. This caused a great number of deaths from cholera infantum, more than half the number of the zymotic being
from this disease alone. Ordinarily the rate compared with other diseases occurring here would not be greater than from 15 to 18 per cent.
Class II.-CONSTITUTIONAL DISEASES.
The percentage of constitutional diseases, which includes phthisis pulmonalis, it will be observed is very light.
Class III.-LOCAL DISEASES.
The mortality here is larger than I supposed it would be, although, as I have previously remarked, pneumonia in the changeable weather of the spring months is sometimes very severe.
Class IV.-DEVELOPMENTAL DISEASES.
These diseases are about as in other cities; about 80 per cent. here are attributed to premature births this year.
Class V.-VIOLENT DISEASES.
This class makes a better showing than one would expect of a frontier city, like Omaha.
Class VI.-UNKNOWN CAUSES.
This class is unusually large, owing to the fact of our city being infested with a great number of quacks, who are so utterly ignorant as to be unable to give any cause of death.
There were no deaths from smallpox; but two deaths from scarlatina and two from measles, all that occurred during the year. The death-rate from consumption is very slight, less than in any city of the same population perhaps. Pneumonia and bronchitis claim a less percentage of mortality here than that of any city I have been able to obtain statistics from for the corresponding year. The mortality from cholera infantum has been excessive, but not as great as that of some other places during the same period.
It is true that our State is young, and our city small as yet, but it is a source of congratulation to have a total mortality of only 12.9 to every thousand of our population, while other cities rate all the way from 20 to 35 to the thousand.