A Historical Perspective on Regulating Eating Places Amid a Pandemic

by Brian Fink*

The ferocity and turmoil of the Covid-19 pandemic has, at times, been compared to the so-called Spanish Flu of 1918–1920.  Dr. Anthony Fauci, the nation’s top infectious disease expert, said in July 2020 that the Covid-19 pandemic could reach the same tragic magnitude as the Spanish Flu.  The United States lost about 675,000 people to that virus.  In February 2021, it had already lost 500,000 to the new one.  There are many comparisons to be made, and the present feels frighteningly familiar.

That is why I decided to see for myself how we regulated restaurants, bars, and the rest of the budding American hospitality industry during the Spanish Flu.  To do that, I analyzed scores of newspaper stories and advertisements from between 1918 and 1920.

What I discovered was déjà vu: a global pandemic, mask mandates, forced quarantines, fake news and newspapers fanning the flames of fear, eating places and entertainment venues shuttered, curfews and restricted hours of service, restaurants struggling to survive, businesses deemed essential and nonessential, anti-vaxxers, hairbrained explanations of how the virus started, an economy on the brink, and, oh, the fighting and the politics.

Spanish Flu’s Spread Through Today’s Legal System

Cessante ratione legis, cessat lex ipsa.  The rationale of a law no longer being applicable, the law itself no longer applies.  Justice Antonin Scalia explained in his dissent to Rogers v. Tennessee that this ancient common-law maxim is about “a change of circumstances that rendered the common-law rule no longer applicable to the case.”

Or as another judge put it in 1883, “If the reasons on which a law rests are overborne by opposing reasons, which in the progress of society gain a controlling force, the old law, though still good as an abstract principle, and good in its application to some circumstances, must cease to apply as a controlling principle to the new circumstances.”

This legal truth is analogous here.  A pandemic like the Spanish Flu or Covid-19 emerges and suddenly the foundation of some of our rules is exposed.  The pandemic spreads into a crack in that foundation, and we must respond with new rules to protect ourselves.  We tolerate them because they are temporary.  We hope the pandemic—the change of circumstances—disappears, and with it the rules that followed.  The rationale of a rule no longer being applicable, the rule itself must end.

Whether we are seeking understanding or comfort, when we are in the thick of new circumstances, we cannot help but search for familiarity.  For this reason, comparisons of Covid-19 to the Spanish Flu are becoming more commonplace in the legal world.  Such comparisons provide a kind of precedence by which we can measure the pandemic and related legal standards of today, similar to how an attorney might draw from an old case to prove or disprove a new argument.  Examples abound.

In seeking an injunction against the enforcement of rules promulgated by District of Columbia Mayor Muriel Bowser aimed at minimizing the spread of Covid-19, Capitol Hill Baptist Church claimed, “[E]xcept for a three-week hiatus during the peak of the Spanish flu in 1918, its members have continued to gather weekly, in person, ever since.”[1]  During the church’s latest hiatus, history repeats itself.

In a habeas corpus case, the presiding justice who wrote the opinion described San Quentin Prison as experiencing “the worst epidemiological disaster in California history.  And there is no assurance San Quentin will not experience a second or even third spike, as it did during the Spanish flu pandemic . . . .”[2]  Meanwhile, a federal magistrate judge in another case called the Covid-19 pandemic “the worst global pandemic since the Spanish Flu of 1918.”[3]

Judges and attorneys, faced with the extraordinary nature of the Covid-19 pandemic, sometimes elucidate lessons from this history.  For instance, in a case involving the Wisconsin legislature challenging the Wisconsin Department of Health’s authority to issue Covid-19 emergency orders, the Supreme Court of Wisconsin unearthed the State’s sweeping actions in 1918 to minimize the spread of the Spanish Flu.[4]

Similarly, a Texas court justified its need to interpret the governor’s pandemic powers anew, in part, because “during the 1918 Spanish flu pandemic, the Governor of Texas did not issue a single executive order.”[5]  And a federal judge looked to Pennsylvania’s response to the Spanish Flu to highlight how extreme its current response to Covid-19 appeared.[6]

This legal history contextualizes for courts, as well as for the political institutions and public at large, the statewide emergency measures now being taken to minimize the spread of Covid-19.  It helps us make sense of these unusual times.

Restaurants and Saloons Pressured by Food Rationing and Prohibition

In the lead-up to the 18th Amendment’s ratification on January 16, 1919 and after it went into effect on January 16, 1920, opponents of Prohibition and many in the public-health and medical professions proclaimed that whiskey held medicinal value.  The Anti-Saloon League and other proponents of Prohibition dismissed such propositions as unsubstantiated political ploys or simply nonsense.  Here is an example of such merits applied to the Spanish Flu.  The Buffalo Commercial, Jan. 23, 1920

The hospitality industry looked much different a hundred years ago.  Professor Rebecca Spang, who published a book about restaurant history, offers a glimpse of the role restaurants played during the Spanish Flu pandemic.

“A century ago, where restaurants existed, they were crucial for feeding the many new citydwellers who lived in one-room studios or boarding houses; homeownership in 1918 was the exception, not the norm.  Take-out as we know it today barely existed, since its popularity depends on people having comfortable homes or office desks where they can take their meals (or cars in which to eat them),” she writes.

Restaurants and cafeterias were installing new lunch counters and offering a la carte options, which allowed busy people to efficiently order and eat their meals before returning to work.[7] 

Saloons, too, provided necessary services to these new citydwellers, especially to recently-arrived immigrants.  The year 1907 marks the peak of immigration to America, and by 1910, nearly 75 percent of New York City’s population is estimated to have been immigrants.

In her book, Faces Along the Bar: Lore and Order in the Workingman’s Saloon, 1870-1920, Madelon Powers paints the pre-Prohibition saloon as a one-stop shop for working-class people.  Amid the buzz, one could land a new job, find a place to live, meet new friends and associates, fill up on a free or cheap lunch, and escape briefly from the toil of days made long by strenuous labor.

Despite their vital nature, restaurants, saloons, and other food-and-beverage locales were being squeezed at the onset of the Spanish Flu.

America’s entrance into World War I required nationwide food rationing and price controls to free up resources for overseas troops.  The Food and Fuel Control Act became effective in 1917.  This wartime law created a network of federal, state, and local food administrators to make rationing and pricing decisions affecting the hospitality industry.

In October 1918, County Food Administrator Hafford Jones issued an order to all eating houses and soft drink stands in Tampa, Florida that consumption of milk must be reduced by 50 percent.  His order read, in part: “All hotels, restaurants and soda dispensers are hereby directed to discontinue the making of whipped cream for any purpose whatsoever and to discontinue the sale of milk drinks made from fresh milk.  Public eating places may serve one service of milk to any one present at any one meal and no more.”[8]  Meanwhile, across the country, restaurants and boarding houses in Flagstaff, Arizona were receiving similar orders.[9]

Customers were not always pleased with receiving smaller portions.  In Topeka, Kansas, one patron of the Good Eats café snuck in a loaf of bread under his arms.  The café manager reported the malfeasance of this “bread hog.”  Thereafter, customers were put on notice that such shenanigans ran afoul of the nation’s conservation efforts.  They had to learn to “be content with the two ounce limit for Victory bread or four ounces of quick breads when no Victory bread is eaten,” Kansas Federal Food Administrator W. P. Innes declared.[10]

Prohibition also took a toll on the hospitality industry, first at the state level and later upon ratification of the 18th Amendment.  Many former saloons became restaurants or grocery stores, and the hospitality industry saw the rise of soda fountains, lunchrooms, and automats.[11]

With urban populations surging, an expensive world war limiting supplies and food service, and the outlawing of alcohol sales drying out bar shelves, the hospitality industry was in anxious flux in the fall of 1918.

Liberty bonds, also known as Liberty loans, were war bonds sold by the U.S. government to support its efforts in World War I.  Here, Liberty Loan confronts three nemeses: over-confidence, the German Peace Offensive, and the Spanish Flu epidemic.  Baltimore Sun, Oct. 12, 1918.

Regulation of Eating and Drinking Establishments During the Spanish Flu Pandemic

Emergency measures imposed against eating establishments during the Spanish Flu are familiar to us today.  They were largely the same as those imposed during Covid-19.

Their differences are sometimes meaningful.  Local health officials, rather than state and federal governments, drove the pandemic response in 1918.  This would necessarily result in even more regional variance than we experienced in 2020.

Other differences are merely superficial, for they share a common policy rationale, such as to minimize the clustering of people or to target specific vulnerable points of the hospitality industry.

Nevertheless, the urgent responses of both eras point to a shared experience.  On one hand, we responded today just as we did 100 years ago.  On the other hand, our scientific understanding, technology, society, and governance are vastly more nuanced and complicated than they were back then.

Each set of policies truly is a sign of its time.  But despite their differences, both sets of policies had something in common: they were shaped by an emerging understanding of the virus and its threat to public health at every level of government.

Mandatory Mask Ordinances

Mask ordinances were commonplace in 1918, and punishment for noncompliance could be strict.  On October 25, 1918, police officers in Fresno, California were ordered to begin enforcing the Board of Health’s mask rule “by arresting those who are too unconcerned with the welfare of others to wear them.”  And flu patients “who have not enough regard for public welfare to isolate themselves” were subject to forced isolation by the police.  Pursuant to Political Code 3979, the city vested such power to enact these emergency measures in City Health Officer Dr. C. Mathewson and his board of health.[12]

Farther North, in San Francisco, violators of the city’s compulsory mask order were also subject to arrest.[13]  But Cache County, Utah, like other municipalities around the country, had no apparent penalty for violation of its mask ordinance.[14]

Regardless of the punishment imposed, there is evidence people generally wore masks.  At one point, demand for masks was so high, Red Cross’s supply of them was depleted.[15]  And just as today, many grew tired of wearing them.[16]

Throughout the Covid-19 pandemic, compulsory mask-wearing rules have been among the most talked-about government responses.  Included in the core of those discussions is the extent to which such rules must be informed by public-health experts.

Just as local Boards of Health issued local mask rules during the Spanish Flu, state Departments of Health in coordination with governors issued statewide mask rules during the Covid-19 pandemic.  For example, early in the pandemic, through executive order and Department of Health regulations, New York began requiring people who can medically tolerate them to wear masks in public when not social distancing.

Texas recently announced its statewide mask mandate has ended.  In his executive order, Governor Greg Abbott cited numerous public-health metrics to justify and qualify his decision to no longer require mask wearing.

Not all states issued statewide mask rules during the Covid-19 pandemic, and attempts to limit local officials from enacting their mask rules occurred.  In October 2020, Governor Rick DeSantis of Florida curtailed local officials’ power to enforce their mask rules.  Governor Abbot is mounting his own campaign against Austin and other Texas municipalities.

The arrests for mask-mandate violations of the Spanish Flu may seem severe.  I know of no arrests made for such violations today, although New York State and New York City have issued fines for noncompliance.  One city in New York apparently made violation of its mask rule punishable by jail time, but I do not know whether anyone has actually been arrested.

The duration of the Spanish Flu mask mandates appear to have been brief by comparison.  As of this month, many of us have been subject to mask mandates for a year.  But in 1918, most mandates lasted only a few weeks.  That said, many people voluntarily secluded themselves or avoided public gathering places, even when no mandate was in effect.  For example, early in the Spanish Flu pandemic, Oakland bars and cafes voluntarily limited their hours of service or temporarily shut down “for the first time on record” because “patrons are missing.”[17]

Several factors likely played into this, including a greater proportion of the population living in smaller communities, economic hardship, less robust scientific understanding of communicable disease, cultural norms, and public defiance.

Despite some of these differences, though, the mask mandates from the Spanish Flu are remarkably similar in policy rationale and roll-out to those in effect today.  As state governments and the federal government take an increasing role in the lives of Americans, today’s mask rules seem like a natural outgrowth of 1918–1920.

People had all sorts of reactions to the gauze masks suddenly so ubiquitous.  The Seattle Star, Jan. 28, 1919.

The routines of life were suddenly interrupted by the sight of people in gauze “flu” masks.  Mask ordinances were among the first regulations adopted at the onset of the Spanish Flu pandemic.  The DeKalb Daily Chronicle, Oct. 19, 1918.

Shutting Down Eating Establishments

Within the same few weeks in October 1918, restaurants, saloons, and other public eating places throughout the country, including in California, New York, Pennsylvania, and the District of Columbia, were forced to close.[18]

Saloons were prime targets, and not just because of anti-wet convictions.  Patrons of restaurants tended to eat in more private and distanced settings, but those in saloons gathered together in larger numbers.

Some saloonkeepers fought these shutdowns in court, where they alleged their businesses were being unfairly targeted.[19]  Restaurants and bars across the country would wage similar arguments 100 years later, such as when a California Superior Court judge concluded the Los Angeles County Health Director acted arbitrarily when she banned outdoor dining.

Still, these shutdowns appear to have been short-lived and not nearly as widespread as those occurring during the Covid-19 pandemic.  As discussed above, wartime food rationing and price controls threatened the bottom line of eating establishments during the Spanish Flu pandemic.

Moreover, people were likely eating out less than usual in the early twentieth century.  Against a backdrop of collective sacrifice for the good of the country and its soldiers, cities and towns across the country saw public officials and community members come together in voluntary coordination to fight the Spanish Flu.[20]  This sense of sacrifice may have inspired people to keep away from crowds.  Lingering and gathering might have become regarded as a faux pas.  Pedestrians in Oakland became familiar with signs instructing them to “keep moving”—an indication of public aversion to people gathering.[21]  Rather than compromise community norms, many apparently chose to avoid the streets altogether.

But countless restaurant and saloon regulars were in Europe fighting in World War I.  America deployed more than 4 million personnel overseas before a ceasefire and Armistice was declared on November 11, 1918.  With families back home strapped for money and forced to purchase only minimal pantry staples, it is highly likely restaurants and other eating establishments suffered fewer sales for more than a year before the Spanish Flu pandemic hit.

Put another way, the yearlong devastation of today’s restaurant industry, brought on by prolonged shutdowns, among other things, may had already been happening to the hospitality industry in 1917 and 1918 because of a sudden loss of a major customer base, food rations, and economic instability.

Unlike today, public assistance during the Spanish Flu for this industry appears to have never occurred.  In the time of Covid-19, the U.S. government has provided lifelines to restaurants harmed by shutdowns—notably, the Payment Protection Program and restaurant-specific grants—and, for many in the industry, even these do not go far enough.

Both eras cannot be compared so easily.  Just as with the mask mandates, we see differences in degree for myriad reasons.  Yet it is striking how twice the hospitality industry was targeted early in each pandemic in remarkably similar ways, and twice the industry turned to the law to claim those targets were unfair.

Early in the pandemic, people across the country appeared reluctant to visit eating establishments and other places with public gatherings.  Meanwhile, those with Spanish Flu symptoms filled up hospitals and emergency wards, pushing them to capacity.  Oakland Tribune, Oct. 24, 1918.

Limiting the Hours of Eating Establishments

Restricting service hours was another familiar measure regulators took in 1918.  While others shut down eating establishments, Baltimore City Health Commissioner Dr. John D. Blake let them stay open from 9:30 in the morning to 4:30 in the afternoon.  He sought to snuff out after-dinner get-togethers.  Several proprietors defied his orders.  During one raid, police officers observed the café’s front door was locked and its lights were out, but four men were drinking at the bar inside.  All involved were later arraigned.[22]

Today’s equivalent curfews seem lax compared to these modest hours of operation.  In November 2020, Gov. Cuomo required restaurants and bars to cease service at 10:00 PM.  Several months later, he extended that curfew to 11:00 PM.  Like the Baltimore cafés busted by Dr. Blake, restaurants and bars have been shut down and fined for defying Governor Cuomo’s similar orders.

But these curfews cannot be so easily compared.  Eating out in 1918 was less a leisure activity and more of a necessity, especially for workers, travelers, and families, who otherwise could not eat at home.  Restaurants regularly advertised themselves as selling “home-baked pies and pastries” or some other comforting reminder of home.[23]

Like today, though, people in 1918 celebrated good fortune and holidays with friends and family, and sometimes they did so at restaurants.  While not specifically a curfew or a total shutdown, local health officials sometimes banned celebrations at restaurants.  In Spokane, Washington, City Health Officer Anderson barred the public from celebrating Christmas and New Year’s at eating establishments, despite a decrease in new flu cases in the city.[24]

This sort of event-specific ban resembles today’s limits on indoor capacity.  Throughout the Covid-19 pandemic, restaurants and bars throughout New York, Washington, and other states were barred from serving customers indoors but were eventually permitted to allow customers inside at reduced capacity.  The motivation behind both policies is the same: limit the number of people indoors.

The shutdowns, curfews, and event-specific prohibitions imposed by local health officials during the Spanish Flu are nearly identical to several today.  But, like all the other similar measures, their duration, geography, and degree vary.

Other Restaurant-Specific Measures

Enhanced sanitary procedures were a selling point during thre Spanish flu era, though they may have started out as public-health mandates.  In New York City, Dr. Royal S. Copeland was Health Commissioner.  He required restaurants, cafeterias, and all other eating establishments to sterilize glasses and utensils in boiling water in order to “destroy the germs sticking to them.”[25]  Six restaurants and confectionaries were fined $10 each for serving customers dirty glasses.  When he issued his punishment, Magistrate Levine “referred to the expenditure of thousands of dollars by the municipality to fight the ‘plague.’”[26]

As restaurants in New York City reopen today, they must comply with numerous health-and-sanitation regulations issued by the New York Department of Health.  These go well beyond sanitizing dishes in boiling water.  The regulations comprise an entire system of disinfection, equipment overhaul, staff protection, customer screening and testing, record-keeping, and so on.  Undoubtedly, as our understanding of communicable diseases has deepened, so, too, has our understanding of how a virus can spread at a restaurant or bar.

Eating establishment in Tampa, FL, advertises the sanitary practices it is taking.  The image of hygiene as a desirable trait among restaurants implies the public’s concern with a sanitary dining experience.  Tampa Daily Times, Oct. 16, 1918.

Requiring mandatory health exams of restaurant workers was not unheard of.  In fact, it caused quite a stir in El Paso, Texas.  Word came that the local army headquarters issued an order requiring restaurants to present certificates of good health for all their workers in order to serve soldiers food and drink.

By the time it reached Margaret Clark, proprietor of Mrs. Clark’s café and “a heavy taxpayer,” she believed it was her own city that had written the order.  She would have none of that.  “I’ll protect the women in my employment with every cent I have before I will have them subjected to the examination required by the city health board in compliance with the recent order concerning social diseases,” she fumed.

The waitresses refused to submit themselves to the exams.  Gertrude M. Burton of the Sheldon café was sympathetic.  The order “is against the constitution of the United States,” she said.[27]

Though not as extreme, some municipalities specifically required restaurant workers to wear masks.[28]  At times, this may have been out of a need to ensure then-essential workers could have access to the personal protective equipment.  When mask supplies were running short in Seattle in October 1918, local health officials weighed whether to make it compulsory for “certain classes of employees” like waiters to wear them, so that the masks could “be pressed into service at once.”[29]

Owners of eating establishments challenged government regulations aimed at curbing the spread of the Spanish Flu, just as they have been doing during Covid-19.  The Buffalo Times, Dec. 12, 1918.

These and the other actions regulators took in 1918-1920 were all grounded in the growing understanding of how the Spanish Flu spread: through close contact with other people.  Local deference to public health experts explains, at least in part, why these regulations came into existence.  In our modern times, we have similarly relied on the advice and knowledge of our public health experts, perhaps with more precision and nuance.

Yet, notwithstanding this deference to and trust in science, we struggle with consistent rollouts, effective enforcement, and unified messaging.  During a pandemic, we may need these regulations to encourage and force us to take precautions we know can save lives.  After all, our natural inclination, whether at pre-Prohibition saloons or 21st-century bars and restaurants, is to come together and enjoy ourselves among those we care about.  When the rationale of the law emerges, the necessary shape of the law too may become apparent.

Advertisements that certain foods, drugs, or other products could prevent or treat the flu abound.  Buffalo Enquirer, Feb. 24, 1920.

Pandemic Policy Shaped by Governmental Coordination, Science, and Concern with Public Health

These emergency measures were no accident in 1918.  Local health officials engaged in lengthy deliberations before issuing their orders.

As other municipalities were shutting down eating establishments in October 1918, the “influenza board” in Chicago weighed whether they, too, should issue similar orders.  They spoke well into the night as they tried to parse which businesses should be subject to the closures.  They considered closing foodrooms, saloons, ice cream parlors, and banquets, among others.  Having gone back and forth for hours, they ultimately issued a mandate to close theaters, lodges, and public night schools.  The State Health Commissioner of Illinois, Dr. C. St. Clair Drake, soon issued a mandate covering the entire state.[30]

Local health boards also informed the actions of other local health boards.  Sometimes the actions of one city inspired others.  After the health commissioner of Buffalo, New York instituted a citywide mask ordinance, he learned that other cities were considering the same “drastic measures of Buffalo and some have already adopted them.”  In a long-distance call with his counterpart in Detroit, the health commissioner also learned that that the “Detroit health officer was extremely anxious to know the results of Buffalo’s drastic measures as far as they are at the present time in evidence.”[31]

The federal government played a role, as well, in influencing these emergency measures.  Messages from the surgeon general appeared in newspapers all around the country, and the U.S. Public Health Service expanded its role during the pandemic by coordinating with governments and funding efforts to fight the virus.[32]

Congress even passed its own nascent form of federal relief.  Public Resolution No. 42, known as the Joint Resolution to Aid in Combatting “Spanish Influenza” and Other Communicable Diseases, appropriated $1 million to quash the pandemic and directed the navy and army to coordinate with the Public Health Service “in aiding to combat and suppress the said diseases.”  Congress apparently had before it another bill, which would have provided $5 million in relief funds.[33]  If there was such a bill, it does not appear to have passed.  Perhaps this was a misprint referencing Public Resolution No. 42; I have yet to find this legislation in congressional archives.

Public health policy and scientific understanding of the virus led the rulemaking process and shaped the measures taken by local boards of health to minimize the pandemic’s spread.  Though our understanding of communicable diseases was not as developed from 1918 to 1920, what we did know was applied to the regulation of eating and drinking establishments in ways similar to today.

Hope and the Change of Circumstances

I did not know what I would uncover when I began peering into the past, but I did not expect to see so many similarities to today.  The hodgepodge enactment and enforcement of emergency measures against eating establishments may differ only in degree; in kind, they overlap and sometimes cannot be distinguished from one another.  The urgency with which these measures came in force was as strong then as it is now, as was the public backlash that sometimes tempers them.

But what strikes me most of all is the placement of public health at the forefront of the law, occasionally even concealing the Constitution or the rights, privileges, and freedoms of individuals in its penumbra.  The legal world is filled with platitudes, conditional or alternative realities, interpretation, and mystery.  But in the wake of a national emergency like the Spanish Flu or Covid-19 pandemics, the singular goal of surviving washes all that away, for better or worse.

In 1918 and in 2020, we confronted a deadly airborne virus, we understood people gather intimately around food and drinks, and we passed laws to stop and limit those gatherings.  After 1920, news of the Spanish Flu faded.  The hospitality industry, though suffering double-digit losses in revenue from the Spanish Flu, eventually roared back.  Vaccinations and ends to these emergency measures—that blessed return of the old circumstances—embolden us in the first quarter of 2021.

The emergency measures America imposed against eating and drinking establishments during the Spanish Flu are precedents—experiential and legal—for those imposed during Covid-19.  If there is a lesson or maxim in all of this, it is that we have done this all before, we have done it all over, and we will do it all once again.  Cessante ratione legis, cessat lex ipsa.

[1] Capitol Hill Baptist Church v. Bowser, 2020 WL 5995126 (D.D.C. Oct. 9, 2020).

[2] In re Ivan Von Staich, 56 Cal.App.5th 53, 56 (2020).

[3] United States v. Thomas, 2020 WL 5538923 (N.D. Tex. Sept. 15, 2020).

[4] Wisconsin Legislature v. Palm, 391 Wis.2d 497, 585 (2020).

[5] State v. El Paso County, 2020 WL 6737510 (App. Ct. Tex. Nov. 13, 2020).

[6] County of Butler v. Wolf, 2020 WL 5510690 (W.D. Penn. Sept. 14, 2020).

[7] See, e.g., Mr. Shannon Will Quit the McCormick Company, Daily Times Advocate, Jan. 27, 1919.

[8] Orders Economy in Milk Supply, The Tampa Daily Times, Oct. 24, 1918.

[9] Eating Places Must Keep on Rations, Weekly Journal-Miner, Oct. 23, 1918.

[10] Eat What You Are Given, The Topeka Daily State Journal, Oct. 29, 1918

[11] See, e.g., Saloon Men Fast Finding New Occupations, Buffalo Evening Times, Dec. 12, 1918.

[12] All “Flu” Cases to Be Isolated; Police to Enforce Mask Order, Fresno Morning Republican, Oct. 25, 1918.

[13] Gauze Mask Expected to Check “Flu,” San Francisco Examiner, Jan. 16, 1919.

[14] “Flu” Situation Reported Today, The Logan City Journal, Nov. 19, 1918.

[15] Flu Regulations Are Pulled Tight, Seattle Star, Oct. 26, 1918.

[16] DeKalb Folks Wear Masks on Train Today, The Daily Chronicle, Oct. 19, 1918.  See also Artistry in Flu Masks Is Show, The Spokesman-Review, Nov. 11, 1918; Flu Takes Four Spokane People, The Spokesman-Review, Nov. 11, 1918.

[17] Bars, Cafes in Dark; Patrons Are Missing, Oakland Tribune, Oct. 24, 1918.

[18] Oakland Rallies Health Experts to Fight Malady; Auditorium to Be Hospital, Oakland Tribune, Oct. 21, 1918; Nation’s Capital Battles Against the Spanish “Flu,” Tampa Times, Oct. 16, 1918; Spanish Flu Shows Decrease in Last 24 Hours, Buffalo Evening Times, Oct. 16, 1918; Local Health Board Enforces Other Rulings, Public Opinion, Oct. 5, 1918.

[19] Saloonmen and Managers Are Angry, Buffalo Evening Times, Dec. 12, 1918.

[20] See, e.g., Fall Organizes to Fight “Flu” Epidemic, Akron Evening Times, Oct. 28, 1918.

[21] Bars, Cafes in Dark; Patrons Are Missing, Oakland Tribune, Oct. 24, 1918.

[22] Liquor After Dark, Baltimore Sun, Oct. 25, 1918; Two Saloons Are Raided, Baltimore Sun, Oct. 24, 1918.

[23] See, e.g., The West Virginian, Nov. 5, 1918, page 8.

[24] New Flu Cases Show Decrease, Spokesman-Review, Dec. 12, 1918.

[25] Beware of “Flu,” Is Dr. Copeland’s New Suggestion, The Evening World, Oct. 8, 1919.

[26] Six Fined for Use of Dirty Glasses, The Daily News, Jan. 27, 1920.

[27] Woman Cafeteria Owner Plans Fight on Examination Order, El Paso Herald, Nov. 4, 1918.

[28] Spanish Flu Shows Decrease in Last 24 Hours, Buffalo Evening Times, Oct. 16, 1918.

[29] Flu Regulations Are Pulled Tight, Seattle Star, Oct. 26, 1918.

[30] Influenza Board Deadlocked on Closing Order, Chicago Daily Tribune, Oct. 16, 1918.

[31] Spanish Flu Shows Decrease in Last 24 Hours, Buffalo Evening Times, Oct. 16, 1918.

[32] See, e.g., “Flu” Epidemic Will Be Milder, Oroville Daily Register, Oct. 20, 1919.

[33] Urge Passing of Flu Bill, Shelby County Herald, Aug. 13, 1919.

*Brian A. Fink is an associate attorney at Danow, McMullan & Panoff in New York City, where he focuses his practice on the unique challenges of the food and beverage industries. He writes frequently about food law and policy. His most recent publication is FSMA on the Farm, a handbook designed to help agribusinesses understand how federal food-safety laws apply to their operations. Before entering private practice, he held food-law fellowships at Yale Law School and Harvard Law School. He earned his J.D. from UCLA School of Law in 2017 and his B.A. from University of Washington in 2011.

Brian is a Research Affiliate with the Resnick Center for Food Law and Policy at UCLA Law.

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