Demographic Aspects of the 1702-1703 Smallpox Epidemic in the St-Lawrence Valley

Desjardins, Bertrand
January 1996
Canadian Studies in Population;1996, Vol. 23 Issue 1, p49
Academic Journal
Data compiled by the Programme de recherche en d�mographie historique of the Universit� de Montr�al were used to number and characterize deaths within the population of European extraction from the 1702-1703 smallpox epidemic in the St-Lawrence valley. Between 6% and 6.5% of the settled population in the late fall of 1702 was eliminated by the disease; adding the death of an extra 25% of newborns, the epidemic's toll reached some 1,300. A significant proportion of adults died among the Canadian-born population, surpassing 10% for women of childbearing ages in particular. This proves that contrary to what most observers have written, smallpox was not prevalent among the non-native population during the XVIIth century.


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