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After You Read
If the issue you selected was resolved in this section, describe how accurate your prediction was.
If not, skip this question.
On the lines below, write in your own words a definition for each term.
1. well coiffed
Analyzing the Writing: Crisis, Climax, Falling Action, and Resolution
Crisis occurs when a conflict reaches a turning point. The characters and/or events that have
opposed each other is at its most intense. The outcome or result of this crisis is known as the
climax of the story. It is the high point, just before the falling action, when the story begins to
close, ending in the resolution of the conflict(s).
1. The crisis of this story occurred in the previous section. What was it?
2. How does the entry for April 14, 1907, represent the climax of the story?
Copyright © 2011 School Street Media. All rights reserved. 25
3. How does the entry for April 15, 1907 represent a lesser, secondary climax of the story?
4. Describe the falling action and resolution regarding Marm and Prudence.
5. Describe the falling action and resolution regarding Prudence and the case.
Responding to the Story
1. On page 286, the judge says: “It’s not a question of innocence or guilt, but a matter of
circumstance.” How is this different from most trials? Do you think this was any consolation to
Mary or her followers?
2. If a similar epidemic was sweeping through your area today and you or a loved one was found
to be a healthy carrier, how would you respond to being placed in quarantine? How might
things be different today than they were in Mary Mallon’s day?
3. Name other diseases that have healthy or asymptomatic (without any symptoms) carriers today.
4. Typhoid fever is caused by a type of salmonella bacteria. What other types of salmonella do
we deal with today?
Copyright © 2011 School Street Media. All rights reserved. 26
Read the Author’s Note found on pages 289–293. How did the author’s background contribute
to her interest in writing this story?
Thinking About the Genre: Historical Fiction
One of the hardest things about writing historical fiction is having to stay in the time period of
the story. For instance, today we know so much more about typhoid and other diseases than they
did during Mary Mallon’s time. Says author Julie Chibbaro regarding the incorrect belief that
yellow fever during the Spanish-American War was spread by human contact (pages 70–81):
“Prudence was reading Soper's notes from 1898. Walter Reed came up with
the mosquito/virus theory/discovery later, in 1900. That's sort of the theme
of the book: what they got right (or wrong) back then; what they knew and
1. What are some other examples in the book that make the characters seem naive or
2. What did you learn about this time period from reading this book that you were not aware of
Copyright © 2011 School Street Media. All rights reserved. 27
1. What is your opinion of the way the Mary Mallon case was handled by the health
department? Explain your answers by using supporting details.
2. What would you have done differently?
Copyright © 2011 School Street Media. All rights reserved. 28
Real People in the Typhoid Mary Event
Name Title His or Her Role in the
Typhoid Mary event
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The Scientific Method
Do some research on the scientific method: What is it? How did it come
to be? Then describe how the New York Department of Health and
Sanitation used the scientific method in gathering evidence and coming
to conclusions in the Mary Mallon case. Write a sample lab report
showing the steps of the scientific method.
Alice Catherine Evans (1881–1975)
Deadly includes a real-life person, Dr. S. Josephine Baker, who was a part of the group that helped
the team deal with Mary Mallon. Not many women became doctors or researchers at the time.
Another barrier breaker in this field was Alice Catherine Evans, who proved that dangerous
bacteria could be transmitted in raw milk. She fought a long, hard fight to get people to take her
work seriously—mainly because she was a woman.
Find out more about Dr. Evans and her work.
Create a visual presentation to share with others
or write a research report about her life and
Immigration: Finding Your Roots
Most Americans can trace their family roots back to other countries, either recently or long ago.
Find out more about your ancestors by using any or all of the following resources:
• interview your relatives, especially grandparents or great-grandparents
• ask to see family trees, diaries, or photo albums others in your family have put together
• check out www.ancestry.com (with parental permission only)
• go to your library and ask someone in the reference department for help in researching
your family ancestry
• use the Internet; start by using Google or another search engine and use keywords such as
genealogy, family history, ancestry, or family tree
• check out a book about how to find more information about doing genealogy searches.
Draw a family tree that shows your ancestors and their countries of origin.
Copyright © 2011 School Street Media. All rights reserved. 30
A young girl delivers fresh unpasteurized
milk in the late 1800s
Suggestions for Further Reading
Other books by Julie Chibbaro:
Redemption (Atheneum, Simon & Shuster, 2004)
Winner of the 2005 American Book Award
Summary: Lily hasn't seen her father for over eight months. Kidnapped one night by the
baron's men, he has been forced to leave England and become part of a colony in the New
World. Now Lily and her mother are in danger, and they face persecution for being followers of a
man excommunicated by the church.
Their one chance for freedom is to take passage on the next ship to the New World. Hopeful that
her father might still be alive, Lily persuades her mother to flee. Their harrowing voyage reveals
painful secrets that strip Lily of her innocence. But it also gains her a friend, a boy named Ethan,
son to none other than the baron himself.
Together Ethan and Lily navigate their way through the treachery of a strange new land. Lost in
the wilderness and captured by an Indian tribe, Lily must reach deep inside herself and tap into a
strength she never knew she had if she is to survive.
Historical fiction books about epidemics:
Fever 1793 by Laurie Halse Anderson (yellow fever in Philadelphia)
Winnie’s War by Jenny Moss (influenza in 1918)
Fever Season by Eric Zweig (Spanish influenza in 1919 in Canada)
Forged in the Fire by Ann Turnbull (the plague and London Fire of 1666)
The Apprenticeship of Lucas Whitaker by Cynthia DeFelice (consumption in 1849)
Running Out of Time by Margaret Peterson Haddix (diphtheria 1840/1996)
Arrowsmith by Sinclair Lewis (the plague in the Caribbean)
Graveyard Girl by Anna Myers (yellow fever in 1878 in Memphis)
A Parcel of Patterns by Jill Paton Walsh (the plague in England in 1665)
Close to Home: A Story of the Polio Epidemic by Lydia Weaver (polio in 1952)
Nonfiction books about epidemics:
An American Plague: The True and Terrifying Story of the Yellow Fever Epidemic of 1793 by Jim
Dr. Jenner and the Speckled Monster: The Search for the Smallpox Vaccine by Albert Marrin.
Germ Theory (Science Foundations) by Natalie Goldstein
The H1N1 Flu (At Issue Series) by Noah Berlatsky
The Great Influenza: The story of the deadliest pandemic in history by John M. Barry
Epidemics and Society series from Rosen Publishing (various titles)
When Plague Strikes: The Black Death, Smallpox, AIDS by James Cross Giblin
Flu: The Story of the Great Influenza Pandemic of 1918 and the Search for the Virus That Caused It by
Copyright © 2011 School Street Media. All rights reserved. 31
Correlations to National Standards
For Grades 9–12
Number Standard Objective
Languages Arts: English NL–ENG.K–12.1 Reading for Perspective
Languages Arts: English NL–ENG.K–12.2 Reading for Understanding
Languages Arts: English NL–ENG.K–12.3 Evaluation Strategies
Languages Arts: English NL–ENG.K–12.4 Communication Skills
Languages Arts: English NL–ENG.K–12.5 Communication Strategies
Languages Arts: English NL–ENG.K–12.6 Applying Knowledge
Language Arts: English NL–ENG.K–12.7 Evaluating Data
Languages Arts: English NL–ENG.K–12.8 Developing Research Skills
Languages Arts: English NL–ENG.K–12.11 Participating in Society
Languages Arts: English NL–ENG.K–12.12 Applying Language Skills
Health NPH–H.9–12.1 Health Promotion and Disease Prevention
Health NPH–H.9–12.3 Reducing Health Risks
Health NPH–H.9–12.7 Health Advocacy
Science NS.9–12.1 Science as Inquiry
Science NS.9–12.3 Life Science
Science NS.9–12.6 Science in Personal and Social Perspectives
Science NS.9–12.7 History and Nature of Science
Social Sciences: Geography NSS–G.K–12.6 The Uses of Geography
Social Sciences: Civics NSS–C.9–12.1 Civic Life, Politics, and Government
Social Sciences: U.S. History NSS–USH.5–12.7
Era 7: The Emergence of Modern
Copyright © 2011 School Street Media. All rights reserved. 32