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Eradicating Hookworm

In the early 1900s, a hookworm epidemic was affecting much of North Carolina’s residents, contributing to the stereotype of lazy Southerners and affecting children’s ability to learn. It would take a collaborative effort between the schools, the state board of health, the Rockefeller Foundation, and volunteers to eradicate the disease.

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Credits

  • Large group of men and boys and a dog with mules hitched to plows, standing in a huge field, no date (1920’s-1930’s). Courtesy of the North Carolina Office of Archives and History, Raleigh, North Carolina
  • Hookworm campaign in Alamance County, North Carolina. 1914. Washburn, B. E. creator. North Carolina State Documents Collection. State Library of North Carolina
  • Rockefeller Sanitary Commission video “Unhooking the Hookworm” 1920. Courtesy of Rockefeller Archive Center.
  • Hookworm disease. Ferrell, John A., creator. North Carolina. State Board of Health. North Carolina State Documents Collection. State Library of North Carolina
  • John D. Rockefeller, Jr., three-quarter length portrait, seated, circa 1915. Underwood & Underwood, photographers. Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division, LC-USZ62-3810
  • Rockefeller Sanitary Commission video “Unhooking the Hookworm” 1920. Courtesy of Rockefeller Archive Center.
  • NC Board of Health poster, 1911. Courtesy of NC Museum of History
  • Hookworm dispensary, Lattimore, Cleveland County, NC. 1912. Courtesy of Rockefeller Archive Center

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This collaboration to eradicate hookworm was important to improving the state's well-being.

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