"Typhoid Mary," whose real name was Mary Mallon, was taken into custody in New York in 1907 when tests showed her to be a healthy carrier for typhoid fever. Her location and identity had been determined by tracing a large number of typhoid cases to kitchens where she had worked.
She was placed in an isolation cottage on North Brother Island, one of the small islands in the East River in New York City. Except for the period between 1910 and 1915, when Mallon was released under strict conditions (which she promptly ignored), she remained in custody on the island until her death in 1938.
Mallon was never "tried" in any legal sense; she was imprisoned as a threat to the public health and safety. Professor Leavitt's lecture will address the difficult issues raised when the rights of the individual collide with the public good.