John Snow, along with Henry Whitehead, is the closest thing to a protagonist in the book. A brilliant, creative thinker, Snow grew up in a working-class family, and later worked his way up to… (read full character analysis)
Henry Whitehead is, along with John Snow, the closest thing to a protagonist in The Ghost Map. A talkative, beloved priest living in Soho, Whitehead was one of the first people in the… (read full character analysis)
The founder and first president of the General Board of Health, Edwin Chadwick was an influential and controversial figure in the history of public health. Like many of his contemporaries, Chadwick believed in miasma theory—i.e… (read full character analysis)
Sir Benjamin Hall was the president of the General Board of Health during the 1854 cholera epidemic; he was also a firm believer in the miasma theory of disease, like his predecessor, Edwin Chadwick… (read full character analysis)
Engineer who researched the 1854 cholera epidemic using sophisticated mapping techniques.
Beloved 19th century English novelist whose novels, including Hard Times and Bleak House, confront many of same themes as The Ghost Map, including poverty, disease, and urban misery.
The elderly mother of two Soho locals, who died of cholera after her children sent her water from the Broad Street pump.
A local Soho tailor who contracted cholera in 1854.
Physicist and urban theorist noted for his elaborate theory of human behavior as it corresponds to the different states of matter.
Highly influential German biologist, often credited with isolating the Vibrio cholera bacterium in the 1880s (although Italian scientists had done so forty years previously).
British doctor who, in the 1830s, determined that cholera could be cured by drinking clean water, but whose findings were tragically and bizarrely ignored.
London police officer whose infant child is believed to have been the “index case” in the 1854 cholera epidemic.
Wife of Thomas Lewis, whose infant child is believed to have been the “index case” in the 1854 cholera epidemic.
Political philosopher who lived in London for many years, best remembered for writing Capital and co-authoring The Communist Manifesto, the two foundational texts of Communism.
Boston dentist best remembered for being the first medical practitioner to give a public demonstration of etherized anesthesia.
Beloved Victorian nurse and public health advocate, still celebrated for her crusades on behalf of the poor.
Scripture reader for St. Luke’s parish, and a good friend of Henry Whitehead.
One of the first medical officers to visit Soho during the 1854 cholera epidemic.