Cyrenius Chapin, cholera report to the Buffalo Board of Health, July 12, 1832.

The cholera epidemic of 1832 originated in Asia. It swept through Europe, crossed the Atlantic Ocean, and reached Quebec in the early summer of 1832. Passenger vessels plying the inland waterways brought the cholera to Buffalo in July, 1832. As the first cases appeared, the Buffalo Common Council established a board of health, headed by Mayor Ebenezer Johnson. The board required Dr. Cyrenius Chapin and other Buffalo physicians to submit daily reports on cholera patients in their care.

As a young man, Ira A. Blossom worked as a clerk for Harm Jan Huidekoper, an agent for the Holland Land Company, based in Meadville, Pennyslvania. Blossom later came to Buffalo to serve as a subagent to Joseph Ellicott. Immigrants were commonly blamed for falling victim to the cholera because of their "filthy living conditions" and "bad habits."

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