The erroneously named 'Spanish Flu' pandemic of 1918-1920 was responsible for the deaths of at least 50 million people worldwide. Its point of arrival in the UK was Glasgow, Scotland, probably brought by troops returning from the battlefields of the Great War. The first infections were in factories and a boys' industrial school and the first recorded deaths were of eight children at the former Smyllum Orphanage in Lanark. The British Newspaper Archive is a valuable online source of reports about the pandemic from local Scottish newspapers of the time, but there is more research to be done in the National Records of Scotland and in local archives. The authors welcome advice on potential sources of the effects of the 1918 pandemic on Scottish orphanages, children's homes and industrial schools.

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Connelly, G. & Lawrence, M. 2020, 'Before COVID-19: the effect of the 1918 pandemic on Scotland's children', Scottish Journal of Residential Child Care. https://strathprints.strath.ac.uk/72603/

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Last updated: 17 June 2022
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