Yellow Fever Timeline

Priests serving in Shreveport, September 9 – October 8, 1873

Tuesday September 9
Fr. Jean Pierre sent urgent messages to Fr. Jean-Marie Biler and Mother Hyacinth at St. Vincent’s requesting more help with nursing Yellow Fever victims

Saturday September 13
Fr. Quemerais fell ill

Sunday September 14
Fr. Pierre fell ill

Monday September 15
Fr. Biler administered Last Rites to Fr. Quemerais, who died at 7:00 p.m.

Tuesday September 16
Fr. Biler administered Last Rites to Fr. Pierre, who died at approximately 7:00 p.m.

Tuesday September 16/17
Fr. Biler sent telegram to Fr. Louis Gergaud in Monroe and Fr. Francois LeVezouet in Natchitoches

Thursday September 18
Mother Hyacinth wrote to Bishop Martin asking for help; Fr. Biler fell ill

Fr. Gergaud boarded stagecoach in Monroe that evening: “Write to the bishop and tell him I go to my death; it is my duty and I must go.”

Saturday September 20
Fr. Gergaud arrived in Shreveport; went to bedside of Fr. Biler who then appeared to be recovering

Monday September 22
Fr. LeVezouet left Natchitoches for Shreveport: “It is the surest path to heaven.”

Bishop Martin wrote to New Orleans requesting priests who had previously been in Yellow Fever epidemics (? Verify this date)

Wednesday September 24
Fr. Gergaud fell ill; Fr. Biler’s condition worsened

Friday September 26
Fr. Gergaud was too ill to minister to Fr. Biler, who was now certainly dying.

Fr. LeVezouet arrived in Shreveport in the afternoon, went immediately to bedside of Fr. Biler and administered Last Rites. Fr. Biler died a few hours later, at 6:00 p.m.

Wednesday October 1
Fr. LeVezouet administered Last Rites to Fr. Gergaud, who died at 3:30 a.m.

Wednesday October 8
Fr. Duffo and Fr. Ferrec arrive from New Orleans; went to bedside of Fr. LeVezouet, who died shortly after