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February 1914


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Am J Dis Child. 1914;VII(2):124-139. doi:10.1001/archpedi.1914.04100380029002

Pellagra until recently was of historical interest only to the American student of medicine, who read of its prevalence among the peasantry of Southern Europe. We little suspected that this scourge was present in the United States; for although rare sporadic cases had previously been reported in this country, it was not till April, 1907, that Dr. G. H. Searcy, assisted by Drs. Dyer of New Orleans, Bondurant of Mobile, and McCafferty and Somerville of Mt. Vernon, Ala., reported to the meeting of the Alabama State Medical Association eighty-eight cases of pellagra as having recently been observed in the Mt. Vernon (Ala.) Asylum for Insane Negroes. This report constitutes a valuable contribution to the history of the disease in America, but did not receive the attention it deserved, as only one case was reported as a result. This was by Dr. T. C. Merrill of Texas.

In December, 1907, Dr.

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