American Female Missionary Victims of Epidemics

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Ordu Üniversitesi Sosyal Bilimler Enstitüsü Sosyal Bilimler Araştırmaları Dergisi, vol.13, no.2, pp.1589-1616, 2023 (Peer-Reviewed Journal) identifier


Epidemics have always played an important role in human history and have deeply affected the individual, social and economic lives of states, communities and people. The communities located at the crossing point of civilizations and being on trade transition routes have been more affected by epidemics due to the intensity of interaction. This is probably why Anatolia has always faced epidemics from past to present. One of the time periods when these epidemics are intense is the process from 1820 to the end of the World War I. It is known that the American Board missionary organization was operating in the Ottoman lands during these epidemic times. For this reason, it is seen that the effects of the epidemic were voiced by missionaries, and even became the subject of American Board reports. This study is about the female missionaries (married or single) who worked on behalf of the American Board organization, who left their country for an ideal, came to the Ottoman lands and lost their lives due to some epidemics. First of all, the subject of the study will be revealed through the information in the documents of the American Board, the articles in the Board’s publication called "The Missionary Herald". In the light of the aforementioned documents, the aim of the study is to both reveal the identities of the women missionaries who lost their lives in the Ottoman lands due to some epidemic diseases and also to relate which disease they died from, and thus to make some contributions to the literature.