Thirty-two-year-old Caroline Anderson died this date, June 24th, in 1853 of Consumption of the Bowel. (The death certificate identifies her year of birth incorrectly. She was 32 years old at her death and was born in 1822.) This bacterial disease created ulceration and perforation in the victim’s intestines, making nourishment impossible to reach the body. The 1850 U.S. Census shows that Ms. Anderson was born in Delaware. There was no occupation reported.
Her spouse Isaac Anderson was born in Maryland and was thirty-seven years old at the time of Ms. Anderson’s death. He reported his occupation as “laborer” in the 1850 Census. It appears the Andersons did not have children.
The red arrow indicates the location of the Andersons’ residence on Fifth Street just north of South Street. The yellow arrow indicates the close proximity of Bethel African Methodist Episcopal Church. The couple would have lived in one small room for which they would pay $3-$5 a month in rent. Mr. Anderson would have been fortunate to make that amount in a week.
Ms. Anderson died on a day where the temperature reached 82°. For the four days previous, the temperature soared to 95°– 96°. The night before her death, a “fine shower” brought some relief. For someone not able to hold fluid down, her suffering is hard to comprehend.