Since humans stopped wandering the earth in nomadic groups and started living in sedentary communities they have been plagued by outbreaks. In the past, these outbreaks were shrouded in mystery. No one knew why they happened and methods to deal with these outbreaks were rudimentary at best. A retrospective look at history reveals some fascinating and horrifying tales. Using modern methods and examinations of the historical record, researchers have looked into these outbreaks and tried to untangle what happened and which microbes were responsible. In the next series on this blog, I will look at some of these stories and the answers that have been found and the questions that remain.