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Catalog Number 2002.3.39
Object Name Report
Accession number 2002.3
Description A report of work aboard the U.S.S. Orizaba during October, 1918

Spanish Flu was a big problem. Troops coming aboard from New York already had it, and it spread quickly on board due to the close quarters. The Colonel of the regiment died while on board. The American Library Association books had been passed out throughout the ship but due to the flu the medical department this was stopped in hopes of limiting its spread. Pamphlets still floated around so soldiers still had things they could read. A Chaplin was aboard and helped in any way he could, and had assistants that were very talented in areas of entertainment. He did give a church service. The Flue prevented movies from being shown. While onboard, letter writing, games, and reading, and general conversation did keep soldiers entertained even though the activities were greatly diminished because of the flu. The ship was only in France for 30 hours, and on the return trip there were no wounded on board. Since the ship was thoroughly cleaned before leaving the trip back to America was a lot better. The soldiers could mingle a lot more and movies were shown every night. Some games played on deck were a sack race, three legged race, and a pie eating contest. He spent 50 dollars on prizes and smokes for the winners. He also bought a piano for the ship. He conducted the church that Sunday. While in New York there was a ship's ball. It was so successful that he plans to have another one.
Date October, 1918
Year Range from 1918
Year Range to 1918
Subjects Influenza
Ocean travel
Religious services
Letter Writing
Sack racing
Three-legged racing
Search Terms YMCA