Wild West


A study of medicine in the frontier West reveals Indians had notoriously weak immune systems. White trappers and fur traders who inter married with Indian women often mourned two or three wives, as those spared the scourge of smallpox might die of tuberculosis or pneumonia, the latter a disease their husbands could usually tough out, were they young and in otherwise good health.

Conversely, Indian men generally had stalwart physiques, and as they usually walked around in the summer heat wearing little more than a breechcloth, their healthy appearance—beyond the mysteries of the immune system—was manifestly obvious. Journaling

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