Skip to Main Content

History of Vaccines: Home

Last Updated: Jan 8, 2024 4:10 PM


Welcome to our History of Vaccine's guide! This guide serves as an introduction to the history of vaccines while highlighting various sources. The pages that follow cover the history of the Smallpox, Polio, Measles, and Covid-19 vaccines with some additional sources. 

We hope this page can serve as a starting point for anyone wishing to conduct their own research into the history of vaccines.

Men without housing receiving vaccinations during a Smallpox epidemic around 1879.

General Research Division, The New York Public Library. (1879-04-19). Sanitary Precautions against a Smallpox Edpidemic - An Inspector of the Board of Health Vaccinating Tramps in a Station House Retrieved from

Stanley Plotkin "History of Vaccines" In The Biomedical & Life Sciences Collection, Henry Stewart Talks.

Note: The link provided is a preview for the talk. In order to watch the entire talk, you must be logged in through your UB account. Click here to go to the catalog page for this video and click the link (make sure you are logged in).

Engraving of vaccination during smallpox scare in Jersey City, NJ



Curator, Robert L. Brown History of Medicine Collection

Guide Created by Matthew Gadziala May 2021