Public Health – the Christmas Cholera Outbreak


The day before Christmas Eve 1831 was one set to go down in history as the day the Second Cholera Pandemic first and fatally touched Scotland.  In Victorian Scotland, cholera was a frightening and little-understood killer. Only three years after the beginning of the worldwide pandemic, the bacterial disease – spread via infected water supplies – made its way from Russia and China to Britain, courtesy of a ship landing at the English port of Sunderland laden with infected persons from the Baltic States.  

Image of burial notice from 1832
Burial notices as a result of cholera deaths were not uncommon during the early 1830s

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