|Rosalie Wandzel Sanetra death certificate|
Rosalie Wandzel died in the big flu pandemic of 1918. As you can see from this certificate, she died in St. Elizabeth's hospital. She was buried in the Bohemian Cemetery, several miles north and rather out of the way from where the family ever lived with their many addresses. Interesting thing was, Paul was so sure his mother's burial was in a Catholic cemetery, and he spent the rest of his life looking in all the Catholic cemeteries in Chicago for his mother's burial place. He would have loved to have given her a tombstone. (Now it is too late for the cemetery.) Rosalie was buried in the Bohemian cemetery which was for many nationalities/ethnicities: German, Polish, Jewish, ...all were welcome. A Catholic priest told me this was often done back then when people had no money. Rosalie was buried in a paupers/term grave (also common then), and they had 7-10 years to pay. When paid in full, she'd be moved to a family plot. But by then, Adam had died, was back in Poland, the children were half in the United States and half in Poland, and the children didn't know. So she, along with many others, are still in paupers graves, and no one knows who's in which plot, so you can't put a tombstone up.
The hospital Rosalie went to still exists. Here is a link to a history page about hospitals in Chicago, especially Jewish and Catholic hospitals. The one Rosalie died in was Catholic. St. Elizabeth's was founded in 1887. http://www.encyclopedia.chicagohistory.org/pages/602.html Here is the current address today to look up on Google maps:
1431 N Western Ave, Chicago, IL 60622
I was told by lots of people the reason we couldn't find Rosalie's death certificate was because so many people died, that death records just weren't kept. People were quarantined so they couldn't keep records. I now know, that it was much more orderly than I was told. It was a very scary time, and the numbers are quite awful! But reporting might just be delayed a few days or so. The way I found Rosalie's death certificate was a burial permit, and her name was spelled wrong.
I have recently read 3 interesting historical fiction books. I learned from them that this flu had some unique things. People had purple spots (not like measles, but actual spots), and turned ashen gray right before they died. I'm looking for some good proof and explanations for these things. I've found some really interesting sites that I'll blog about next week. About the statistics for Chicago, the country etc. I also learned things like that the military was hit very hard, as well as American Indians.
To close today's post, I found this article, the day Rosalie Wandzel Sanetra died, a great grandmother of mine. It was in the Chicago Tribune, about the flu epidemic, statistics that week, etc. It was the entire right column, so I split it to make it more visible. Here is a link to the actual page, if you have fold3 accessibility: http://www.fold3.com/image/25/138607431/
(Click images to view full screen)
Source: Chicago Tribune, 13 Oct 1918, pg 1.
|flu part 1|
|flu part 2|