Posts Tagged ‘Public Health’

Swat the Fly, Wisconsin

June 26, 2012

Sheboygan Press (Sheboygan, Wisconsin) Jun 1, 1921

DO IT NOW

by Berton Braley

We must show no ruth or pity
To the fly!
In the country or the city,
He must die!
Do not cherish, do not pet him;
When you see him, go and get him,
Swat him quick and do not let him
Multiply!

Oh, he flits in all the breezes,
Does the fly,
Bringing various diseases;
That is why
We should slay him very quickly
Lest he swarm about us thickly
And we suddenly grow sickly —
And we die!

There’s not one redeeming feature
To the fly;
He’s an evil, loathsome creature,
None deny;
And the only way to treat him
Is to fight him when you meet him —
Smash, abolish, and delete him —
Swat the fly!

He’s a menace — we must pot him,
We must swat and swat and swat him,
While we shout our battle cry,
“Swat the Fly!”

(Copyright, 1921, by The Sheboygan Press.)

Sheboygan Press (Sheboygan, Wisconsin) Jun 1, 1921

FLITTING from dish to dish, taking his morning bath in baby’s milk, regaling himself in the butter and preening himself on the sugar bowl, the house fly again is with us. His feet covered with millions of disease germs, he goes on his way leaving death in many forms in his trail. Scientific experiments have shown that musca domestica, the ordinary house fly, is the most industrious and persistent spreader of contagion in the world. Countless thousands have been numbered among his victims and his toll of death among infants is appalling.

War to the death must be waged against this death-dealing insect. No other duty is so important to the housewife as the extermination of the fly. And the task is much easier now than it will be later when the breeding process has multiplied his numbers.

Swat the fly!

On of the most remarkable advances in modern medicine and sanitary science has come from the knowledge of the fact that many of the most murderous diseases of man and animals are caused by the bits of infected blood-sucking insects. The pioneers in this discovery were Theobald Smith and Kilborne, who showed a quarter of a century ago that the deadly Texas fever of cattle was caused by the bite of a fly — the Boophilus bovis, which had become infected by sucking the blood of affected cattle. This great discovery was soon followed by that of the relation of the mosquito to malaria and yellow fever, the relation of the tsetse fly to sleeping sickness and other forms of trypanosomiasis, the relation of the tick to tick fever, of the bug to relapsing fever, of numerous ticks to anaemic diseases in cattle causing vast economic losses.

In temperate climates it would appear that man is largely immune from blood-sucking infected insects. Recently, however, the house fly has been found to be a danger if in a manner somewhat different in so far as it is unable to penetrate the skin owing to the construction of its mouth apparatus. Whatever disease germs it carries it is a passive process, the chief danger being the contamination of foods by bacteria carried on the surface of its body or in its bowels. Of all insects the house fly is the most constant companion of man, tasting his food by day and frequenting his abode by night whether in the far north or the far south, whether on the land or on the steamers that ply on the great oceans. Its very name, Musca domestica, suggests its relation to man.

If the fly were a cleanly insect he might perhaps be tolerated, but from the double life he leads there is no question that he should be exterminated hip and thigh, for he spends half his day in the latrine or manure heap amid the most foul putridity that it is possible to imagine, amid dead, decaying and diseased matter, from which at intervals he comes to bathe in our mild jug or to poise himself on your pat of butter or your meat. Many of his habits have until recently been a riddle but are now becoming understood, and in consequence his presence is as much feared as many of his congeners who have forsaken the dunghill for a meal of good human or animal blood.

All modern experiments concur to show that the principal breeding place of the house fly is the moist, warm manure heap, cesspool, or latrine, although perhaps it must be admitted that some flies are more fastidious. If collections of filth were destroyed the fly plague would be kept largely in abeyance. As things are he can breed in countless numbers and at a great rate.

The evolution of the house fly is complex, for from the moment that the female deposits her eggs in warm purtrefying manure the young go through various stages of development. Within a matter of hours the egg splits and a minute grub creeps out. At the end of twenty-four hours it moults and passes into the second larval stage, which in a day or two moults again and finally becomes a sort of chrysalis. At the end of three or four days of chrysalis life the case opens and the fly emerges to commence its life work. Within ten days or a fortnight it may be sexually mature and commence to lay great batches of eggs. As a rule breeding goes on rapidly between June and October, although under certain circumstances it may go on all the year round. It is a common observation that flies seem to disappear in winter. This must be explained by their ability to hibernate, the first warm day waking them from their slumbers.

It is a fortunate circumstance that they are liable to various forms of destruction, for apart from the magnificent work carried out by the bird, by the spider, and other insects, the fly is subject to devastating diseases, particularly an infective condition set up by a fungus, the Empusa muscae. This plant, in the form of a spore, lights on the surface of the fly and begins to grow, throwing out a slender process which makes its way between the fly’s scales, and thus gains entrance to its body. In the course of a few days the fungus has invaded all its organs and tissues, and now sick unto death the fly may be easily caught or may drop dead where it has alighted.

Sheboygan Press (Sheboygan, Wisconsin) Apr 21, 1915

As was said above the chief danger of the fly is that it may be a carrier of foul putrefactive or disease germs to articles of diet consumed by man. This is not a figment of the brain of the medical scientist; it is a proved fact. Indeed, long before accurate experiments proved this to be the case it was already supposed that the fly stood in some relation to typhoid fever, especially the typhoid of military stations and camps. There seems to be no doubt that much of the typhoid in the Spanish-American and South African wars were explicable on no other theory. In America this belief became so current that it was spoken of as “the typhoid fly.”

Accurate experiments carried out in this country and elsewhere have demonstrated the disease-carrying propensities of the Musca domestica. Typhoid germs have been recovered from its body days after it was infected. In the case of some germs it has actually been found that where the larva is infected the infection may persist throughout the moultings and be present in the adult or imago stage as late as nineteen days. Not only as a typhoid-carrier, the fly is also believed to carry the disease germs of tuberculosis, cholera, dysentery, and summer diarrhea of children, a disease which sweeps away vast numbers of bottle-fed children in every civilized community at the present day.

The necessity of removing or destroying all putrid organic matter and filth comes home to us when we remember that the fly is capable of long and rapid flights. In actual experiments marked flies were released and were captured half a mile away within forty-five minutes. That flies carry filth on their bodies can be readily shown by taking one from any place and allowing it to walk over the surface of a sterile nutrient jelly. Within a day or two masses of bacteria will have grown wherever its feet have touched. Picture to the mind the gross contamination which will occur when a fly weary with its half-mile flight from a dunghill takes its morning bath in your jug of milk at breakfast. This will bring the problem home to all, and by concerted effort the doom of the house fly will be sealed.

Sheboygan Press (Sheboygan, Wisconsin) Jul 3, 1912

The fly-swatting crusade has been taken up seriously by a number of large cities, either officially or by self-constituted committees of public-spirited citizens. In Cleveland a two-weeks campaign against the fly has just been closed. The warfare was conducted under the direction of a citizens’ committee of fifty-five. A scale of prices was arranged to be regulated by the supply. The market opened at 10 cents a hundred and went down to 10 cents a quart when the swatters got to going right.

Sheboygan Press (Sheboygan, Wisconsin) Jul 8, 1912

The artistic fly swatter was guaranteed a profitable market under this scale of prices, while 10 cents a hundred as the top limit made it impossible for a Napoleon of fly fiances to fill the cold storage warehouse with flies and ever after have champagne for breakfast. As it takes 10,000 flies to make a quart, the price per quart ranged from 10 cents to $10. A similar range in price in stocks within two weeks would set the country by the ears. The Cleveland plan gives the gambler chance enough, and the rights of the consumer and producer are safeguarded.

The Daily Northwestern (Oshkosh, Wisconsin) Sep 27, 1911

Ten cents a quart was the price established in Washington two years ago, but hat was a September price. One female crawling out of a warm corner in the month of April will start a family tree which, without casualties, would have a September membership of about three trillions.

A decrease in the price of flies from $10 a quart, the May figure, to ten cents. the September figure may seem great, but we must remember that the supply may have increased three trillion times.

Sheboygan Press (Sheboygan, Wisconsin) Jun 3, 1912

Sheboygan Press (Sheboygan, Wisconsin) May 15, 1912

Swat Him Now, Iowa!

June 21, 2012

**********

STARVE THE FLY.

The best method to prevent houseflies from breeding is to observe strict cleanliness in the homes and on the streets. This method was successfully carried out along the Panama canal in the campaign against malaria and yellow fever, which are conveyed from one person to another by mosquitoes.

Don’t give the deadly fly a chance!
Keep the house free of food for flies!
Starve him out!

**********

Smite Him Hip and Thigh.

The bugle call of Hygeia
Is sounding through the land,
Arousing all the people
To form a swatting band —

To swat the pesky fly at sight,
And swat him hip and thigh,
Till not a single buzzer
Is left to make a cry.

Because he carries death germs
From many, many ills
That poison food and people
And run up doctor’s bills.

The powers that be have said
“Exterminate the fly,”
And typhoid, with the other ills,
Will bid the world goodby.

**********

STUDY THIS FLY CATECHISM.

Practice It and You’ll Save Many a Life.

WHERE does the fly live? Where there is filth.

Is there anything too filthy for the fly to eat? No.

Does the fly like clean food too? Yes, and it appears to be his delight to wipe his feet on clean food.

Where is his favorite place of feeding? The manure heap and the garbage can.

Where does the fly go after leaving the manure pile and garbage can? Into the kitchen, dining room and bedroom.

Does the fly visit those sick with typhoid fever, consumption, smallpox and cholera infantum? He certainly does and may call on you next.

Is the fly dangerous? Yes; he spreads disease.

How does he spread disease? By carrying infection on his legs and wings and by “fly specks” after he has been feeding on infectious material.

What disease may the fly thus carry? He may convey typhoid fever, tuberculosis, cholera, dysentery, and “summer complaint.”

Did the fly ever kill any one? He killed more American soldiers in the Spanish-American war than the bullets of the Spaniards and was the direct cause of much of the typhoid fever in this country last year.

Where are the greatest number of cases of typhoid fever and summer complaint? Where there are the most flies.

Where are the most flies? Where there is most filth.

Is the presence of flies, therefore, an indication of nearby filth? It most certainly is, and that is disgraceful.

How may we successfully fight the fly? By destroying or removing his breeding place, the manure pile; removing all garbage and making vaults flyproof and by keeping our yard and alley clean, by screening the house and by the use of the wire swatter and sticky fly paper.

**********

Adams County Free Press (Corning, Iowa) May 23, 1917

Swat the Fly, Iowa

June 20, 2012

GET AFTER THE FLIES.

That fly on your plate didn’t wipe his feet when he came in.
The chances are his last walk was in the filth of the street or the garbage pail.
Pleasant, isn’t it?
Then why put up with flies?
Keep flies out of your home.
Don’t trade at stores that tolerate flies.
Don’t eat at restaurants in which there are flies

**********

Protect the Sleeping Baby.

WHEN your children are out of doors and awake the fly is not so dangerous. You will very rarely see a fly on the face of a child walking or playing, but if your baby sleeps outdoors that is the danger time. He must be carefully covered with mosquito netting to protect him from the poisoned kiss.

**********


Swat! Swat! Swat!

When you wake up in the morning
And a fly is buzzing near
And you know he’ll soon be horning
Into your defenseless ear,
Wait awhile until you spot him,
Till you know he’s off his guard;
Then lift up your hand and swat him —
Swat that buzzer good and hard!

When within your office busy
You try hard to do your work
And a fly makes you so dizzy
‘Neath your desk you long to lurk,
Pause until in range you’ve got him,
Steel your heart, though mercy pleads.
Take the office clock and swat him
Right where Mary wore the beads!

There is lots of satisfaction
In the course that I suggest,
With each victim nerved to action
To abate this insect pest.
When you see a fly just pot him,
Nail him as, of course, you should;
Grab a baseball bat and swat him —
Swat him while the swatting’s good!

**********

STARVE THE FLY.

STARVING the fly was added to the swatting of it in Paterson, N.J. The board of health set apart a day for householders to wrap up their food so that the housefly will fail of sustenance.

It was even asked that all refuse food be well wrapped before it is put in the garbage cans.

In addition, every one of the 125,000 residents who was able to swat was asked to kill 200 flies.

**********

THINK OF IT!

Flies and dirt double the amount of sickness among New York city’s babies. This statement, made public by the department of social welfare of the New York Association For Improving the Condition of the Poor, is based on a two years’ investigation in more than a thousand families.

Don’t let that fly get away!

Kill him now!

**********

REALIZE YOUR DANGER,

SWAT THE FLY!

If you were to walk into a room and then be told that in it there were 7,000,000 chances of catching a deadly disease, how long would you linger? The chances are 100 to 1 that you would get out as quickly as possible. According to scientists and doctors, a fly may carry as many as 7,000,000 germs on its feet. Typhoid and tuberculosis are the most common of these germs.

Kill the murderous insect.

**********

Kill the murderous fly!

When we dwell on the great war in Europe words fail us.

Yet statistics show that disease transmitted by the housefly kills more than armies!

Swat the fly!

Starve the fly!

Adams County Free Press (Corning, Iowa) May 23, 1917

Swat the Fly, Ohio

June 19, 2012

Newark Advocate (Newark, Ohio) May 5, 1913

FACTS ABOUT FLIES.

Flies make milk impure.

Flies do nothing but harm.

Flies are wholesale murderers.

Flies bring summer complaint.

Flies cause epidemics of disease.

Flies do not belong in this town.

Flies find nothing too filthy to eat.

Flies spread the hookworm disease.

Flies kill 100,000 people in this country every year.

Flies carry death about on their hairy legs and wings.

Flies cost the United States $500,000,000 annually.

Flies are responsible for the majority of deaths among children.

The Newark Advocate (Newark, Ohio) Apr 17, 1913


SWAT THE FLY BEFORE IT’S BORN

The four principal steps in organizing a campaign against the fly are as follows:

First. — To educate people as to the deadly nature of the fly.

Second. — To kill off all winter flies, those hiding about the houses, waiting their season to forage.

Third. — To do away with all breeding places for flies.

Fourth. — To trap all flies which happen to escape.

The extermination of the winter fly is a problem for the individual house-wife. Don’t let one fly escape. Hunt for them all and kill them early in the spring, for the winter fly is the parent of summer’s terrible swarms.

To do away with the fly breeding places is merely a matter of cleanliness. Clean houses, gardens and yards. Clean streets and alleyways.

Discourage the fly in its breeding proclivities.

Carrying out the fourth step, the sale of fly traps should be encouraged in every store.

To sum it all up, swat the fly before it is born.

The Newark Advocate (Newark, Ohio) May 6, 1913

THE DIARY OF DEATH.

By ADRIENNE CODY, aged sixteen, of Central park school, Topeka.

I am a fly. I’m not very old and am just learning where to find the best things to eat. My favorite places are in the spittoon in the sitting room and the uncovered garbage can on the back porch. Of course some flies would be bothered about having to go out of doors to get to that can. But it doesn’t worry me. In the house where I live there aren’t any screens, so I can fly from the garbage can to the spittoon in perfect safety. I often stop on the way, though, to get in the sugar bowl or crawl over any eatables that are handy.

There’s a baby in this house who annoys me very much. Every time I leave the spittoon and crawl into that baby’s mouth it cries and spits me out. Of course I leave a few tuberculosis germs in its mouth, but it doesn’t seem like that would hurt the baby.

It seems to me like people don’t know what is good to eat. At least the people in this house don’t. Why, they throw away all the good things. They put them in the garbage pail. I am endeavoring to show them what good things are, however, for I get my feet all sticky in the garbage can and then go and wipe them on the bread. About a hundred of my companions are doing the same thing. I really believe that the people are beginning to like it, for they never trouble us any more. We wipe our feet on the bread in peace and quiet.

I heard the woman across the way say that she believed flies had something to do with the man in this house having consumption. I wonder if he got it from the bread.

The woman across the way is losing all her flies. They’re all coming over to our house. She won’t give them anything to eat. She covers up her garbage pail, has tight screens on all her doors and is a terror to flies in general. Her children are such happy, hearty youngsters, while the children in this house are always cross. They never get any afternoon nap. The flies won’t let them.

There’s a very great deal of illness in this house. Two of the boys have malaria and the father is never well. I hears the mother say to the woman across the way: “I really do not know what to do for all this sickness. IT drives me distracted.” What do you think that woman said? Why, “Swat the fly,” of course, at which I ducked. Oh, yes! The baby has typhoid.

The Newark Advocate (Newark, Ohio) May 26, 1913

Newark Advocate (Newark, Ohio) Mar 24, 1914

NOT ONLY SWAT BUT STARVE THE FLY.

A YEAR ago the “Swat the fly!” slogan had a country wide vogue, and as a result probably billions of flies were swatted. But because of the enormous capacity of flies for multiplication — a single pair may produce billions of their kind — there did not seem to be a very appreciable diminution in the total number.

The wiser slogan “Starve the fly!” has been adopted this year, and the only means of starving the insect is by allowing it nothing on which to feed. Filth is its food, and not only should the city streets be kept clear of it and the vacant lots not be made the convenient dumping grounds for every kind of refuse, but every corner of a closet or cellar or kitchen should be cleared of its insanitary accumulations.

The most productive breeding places of the disease carrying fly are garbage cans, cuspidors and manure. To keep a large city absolutely clean with respect to these is no small task, but by the interested and intelligent cooperation of the municipal authorities and the citizens generally the danger of disease from flies can be reduced to a minimum.

The Newark Advocate (Newark, Ohio) Mar 28, 1914