Origin of smallpox vaccination: Jenner and Washington

Oct 2012
203
#1
Edward Jenner is generally given credit for developing the smallpox vaccination in 1796, but Washington ordered vaccination of his troops in the Revolutionary War. Was Washington using a different method?
 
Dec 2011
2,987
Late Cretaceous
#3
I've been reading this;



and it states the following:

"Pus swabbed from a smallpox sore was deliberately introduced into an open incision on a healthy patients' arm or thigh. The consequent eruption was usually milder and far less lethal than natural infection, although the procedure was risky and could trigger fresh epidemics if those newly inoculated were not isolated. After successful experiments on prisoners and orphans, the British Army inoculated many troops during the Seven Years War, the disease, if hardly eradicated, rarely became epidemic among regulars. Frederick the Great likewise inoculated his Prussian legions."
 
Aug 2018
474
Southern Indiana
#5
I remember reading that sometimes a needle and thread would be passed through a small pox scab and then passed through the skin of a patient as a way to immunize them.
 
Mar 2013
77
Stafford, VA
#6
Using the weakened live small pox virus, as was done at the time of the Revolutionary War, is called an inoculation. The vaccine was developed latter from cowpox.
 
Likes: Rodger
Mar 2013
77
Stafford, VA
#8
Do you know how they "weakened" the live smallpox virus? Why didn't those inoculated get full-blown smallpox?
Some did get full-blown smallpox, which scared some people and they would refuse to get the inoculation. Everyone who received the inoculation would get sick since they were receiving a mild dose of the disease. I guess by only running the needle and thread through the scab only (hopefully) enough of the disease would be picked up. It would take a couple weeks or more to recover from getting the inoculation.
 
Mar 2019
1,623
Kansas
#9
Edward Jenner is generally given credit for developing the smallpox vaccination in 1796, but Washington ordered vaccination of his troops in the Revolutionary War. Was Washington using a different method?
When the First Fleet arrived in Australia in 1788, it carried a supply of smallpox scabs for use if needed.
 

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