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BHM Day 18: Onesimus


Inoculations was introduced to America by a slave named Onesimus.

He was brought to America and given to minister Cotton Mather as a gift from the Puritan charge.

He told his master about the practice of inoculation in Africa. By introducing the germs of an infected person to a healthy person, you could make them immune to the disease.

Cotton convinced Dr.. Zabdiel Boylston to experiment with the procedure when a smallpox epidemic hit Boston in 1721. As a result, over 240 people were inoculated.

Onesimus’ practice was also used to inoculate American soldiers during the Revolutionary War.

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