Covington: The Sanitarium of the South

Covington was announced “The Healthiest Place in the United States” by the the United States Census Bureau in 1890. In that year, out of  4,000 Covington and Mandeville residents, there were only 10 deaths, mostly in Mandeville. At the time, physicians believed that this was due to the high ozone content in the air generated by the hundreds of acres of Evergreen Pines surrounding the area. They claimed that no germ disease could survive in this climate. Between the years 1860 to 1886, there were only two cases of yellow fever and one case of typhoid fever; all were imported from another city and none spread, even though the sick were cared for and their funerals were well attended. Covington was never quarantined and was often host to refugees from New Orleans during the yellow fever and typhoid epidemics.