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Black Death at the Golden Gate

Nonfiction: History
Unabridged   9 hour(s)
Publication date: 05/07/2019

Black Death at the Golden Gate

The Race to Save America from the Bubonic Plague

Available from major retailers or BUY FROM AMAZON
Audio CD ISBN:9781684419975
Digital Download ISBN:9781684419982


A spine-chilling saga of virulent racism, human folly, and the ultimate triumph of scientific progress.

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Product Description

A spine-chilling saga of virulent racism, human folly, and the ultimate triumph of scientific progress.

For Chinese immigrant Wong Chut King, surviving in San Francisco meant a life in the shadows. His passing on March 6, 1900, would have been unremarkable if a city health officer hadn't noticed a swollen black lymph node on his groin—a sign of bubonic plague. Empowered by racist pseudoscience, officials rushed to quarantine Chinatown while doctors examined Wong's tissue for telltale bacteria. If the devastating disease was not contained, San Francisco would become the American epicenter of an outbreak that had already claimed ten million lives worldwide.

To local press, railroad barons, and elected officials, such a possibility was inconceivable—or inconvenient. As they mounted a cover-up to obscure the threat, it fell to federal health officer Rupert Blue to save a city that refused to be rescued.

In the tradition of Erik Larson and Steven Johnson, bestselling author David K. Randall spins a spellbinding account of Blue's race to understand the disease and contain its spread—the only hope of saving San Francisco, and the nation, from a gruesome fate.


“A fascinating, in-depth look at a little-known episode in American history. . . . The story of the bubonic plague outbreak serves as an excellent lead-in for Randall to examine the advances that created modern cities.” —Shelf Awareness

“A complex tale of medicine, politics, race, and public health. . . . Randall does good work in revealing the clamorous clash of public and private interests surrounding the outbreak. . . . A tale that resonates with the outbreak of measles, mumps, and other supposedly contained epidemics today.” —Kirkus

Author Bio

David K. Randall is a senior reporter at Reuters. The New York Times bestselling author of Dreamland and The King and Queen of Malibu, he lives in Montclair, New Jersey.