Deadliest October

Deadliest October


October 1918 was America's deadliest month ever.


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After taking the lives of 195,000 Americans in October 1918, the Spanish flu dissipated as quickly as it had arrived, although it had a brief resurgence after crowds flooded city streets to celebrate the November 11 announcement of the armistice. Between war and sickness, life expectancy fell from 51 to 39 years of age in 1918, according to Davis.

By the time it abated in 1920, the Spanish flu had killed 675,000 Americans and left hundreds of thousands of children orphaned. Not only did more Americans die of the Spanish flu than in World War I, more died than in all the wars of the 20th century combined. Globally, the pandemic infected a third of the planet's population and killed an estimated 50 million people.


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