Hungary SIG #Hungary Re: Was Tuberculosis considered "Shameful"? #hungary

Robert Neu

Yes, TB was not welcome news as it was highly
contagious - therefore those in contact with the
person would be suspected of being afflicted -, and it
was also most of the time a fatal illness, and also as
you indicate,considered more prevalent among people
who lived in tight quarters, and therefore poor.

Robert Neu

--- Sam Schleman <Samara99@...> wrote:

I recently found the death certificate for the
grandfather of a large group
of my cousins, which indicated he died of
tuberculosis in Hungary. Prior to
finding the certificate, my cousins had indicated
that their grandfather's
death was never discussed or mentioned by their
parents, but that several
stories had eked out over the years that he:

1.) Was the town tax collector and some disgruntled
taxpayer fired a shot
through the window while he was eating and killed

2.) He went to break up a knife fight in the local
tavern and was
accidentally stabbed and killed

3.) He was a logger and a tree fell on top of him
killing him

I love these "family stories"; they are so much
better than the truth.

In addition, one of these cousins was named after an
Aunt. She has a picture
of this Aunt and was told that the Aunt came to the
US after being married
in Hungary, didn't like it, and returned to Hungary,
where she died in
childbirth. No one knew the name of the husband, nor
the fate of the child.

I have again located this death certificate and she
also died of
tuberculosis. She never came to the US and never had
a child (explaining why
no one knew the child's fate).

In both cases, the person reporting the death and
who therefore had
knowledge of the causes, was my cousin's father, who
was 16 at the time of
death. Yet he told is daughter the concoction about
childbirth, etc.
Certainly his brothers and also his mother (my
cousin's grandmother) would
also have known the truth.

My question is whether tuberculosis was considered
so shameful in circa 1905
Hungary that they would deliberately concoct these
stories rather than tell
the truth? Was TB perhaps associated with lower
economic and or social

Looking for a bit of insight.


Sam Schleman
Malvern, PA

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