Greene County, Arkansas
Paragould's Pest House
The small frame house was located where the City Light and Power warehouse is now. "It was out in the country then." Kingshighway, then called Junction Street, and the Jonesboro highway were dirt roads. (412 and 49)
Patients were assigned to the house when they contracted highly contagious diseases such as typhoid or yellow fever. Dr. Scott and Mary Goins, the county doctor and the county health nurse, treated the residents as best they could, given the medical knowledge of the day. But few left the Pest House alive and some say that explains the morbid location near the cemetery.
The sexton of the Linwood Cemetery, Mr. Yarbrough and his wife prepared meals in their home for residents of the house. Mr. Yarbrough would take the meals to the front porch each day and leave them. Those quarantined would eat in seclusion in their rooms. Folks lived there until their disease subsided and then returned to their families.
The house had four white post on the front porch with separate rooms for each occupant.
*See related article in Section 5 of the Centennial Edition*
Transcribed by: Sandy Hardin
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