Whenever the issue of whether living in our day and age is better than the day of our ancestors and despite all the tragedies of war and death which every generation faces I think of the deaths of these children, siblings and cousins, of 1874.

An outbreak of disease could wipe out your family in a weekend. One week in May 1874 two Kennedy households in Carbonear lost four of their youngest children in 4 days due to the measles.

The Harbor Grace Standard and Conception Bay Advertiser
March 14, 1874

The measles have spread throughout our town and the other towns and hamlets of our Bay. Scarcely a family, blessed with the 'olive branches', but has been visited by this malady. In some instances, six and seven are reported in one family suffering at the same time. We have heard of no fatal cases as yet.

I think the mark of a great age is when the threat of death due to childhood disease is a priority on a global scale. World Health Organization