Nathan Straus: New York City Board of Health
In 1897, Nathan Straus (1848-1931) became the President and Commissioner of the New York City Board of Health for a two year term. Nathan took his responsibilities seriously. One of his first duties as President of the Health Board was to announce that hotels and bath houses would be required to provide bathers with life lines. The board also contemplated appointing a life savings corps of officers in uniforms. On February 2, 1898 The Times reported, "The Woman's Health Protective Association is still interested in the subject of expectoration tracts, and Nathan Straus, President of the Health Board, is to co-operate with the society in the war it is to wage this winter against the great New York expectorator."
Nathan traveled to Albany to present his opposition to the Brush Bill on February 15, 1898. "The principal provisions of the bill to which exception is taken are those depriving the board of the services of the President of the Board of Police Commissioners, prohibiting the production of vaccine virus, diphtheria antitoxin, and other antitoxins, and the work in the prevention of infectious diseases, and excluding from the list of "infectious, contagious, and pestilential diseases" a number of diseases which now are classed by the Health Department or by the Health Departments of other cities as dangerous to the public health."
“Nathan Straus 1848-1931” Straus Historical Society Newsletter Vol. 6 No. 1 (New York: February 1998); pp. 4-8.
“Nathan Straus 1848-1931” Straus Historical Society Newsletter Vol. 6 No. 2 (New York: August 1998); pp. 4-7.
“Nathan Straus Pasteurized Milk Laboratory” Straus Historical Society Newsletter Vol. 4 No. 2 (New York: February 2002); pp. 4-9.
“Nathan Straus, Public Servant” Straus Historical Society Newsletter Vol. 4 No. 2 (New York: February 2003); pp. 4-8.
“The Nathan Straus Soup Kitchens in Palestine” Straus Historical Society Newsletter Vol. 16 No. 1 (New York: August 2014); pp. 1-5.
Source: The Straus Historical Society