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"Making History With Vitamin C"

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by

Hannah Blanshan

on 10 October 2013

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Transcript of "Making History With Vitamin C"

"Making History With Vitamin C"
By: Penny Le Couteur & Jay Burrenson

Made By: Hannah Blanshan & Marceau Garceau
An exposition is a setting forth of the meaning or purpose (as of a writing).
Cause: to tell the readers that the sailors needed Vitamin C and a well-balanced diet

Effect: to inform the readers that Vitamin C and a well-balanced diet can cure scurvy
Rising Action
Climax
The rising action is the events of a dramatic or narrative plot preceding the climax.

In this story, the rising action would be that the majority of sailors were getting scurvy and scientists were starting to test possible cures for the disease.
The exposition in the story "Making History With Vitamin C", is that vitamin C- such as oranges and sour krout- helped cure scurvy.
The climax is the point of greatest intensity or force in an ascending series or progression.
Exposition
In "Making History With Vitamin C", the climax is the fact that before the 18th century, a sailor's diet consisted of salted beef or pork and ship's biscuits known as hardtack (which was baked rock hard and was used as a substitute for bread). The bread was often weevil-infested and very difficult to chew. Therefore, their diet helped contribute to scurvy because it lacked necessary vitamins and nutrients.
Falling Action
The falling action in a story is when the tension lessons and also is the part of a literary plot that occurs after the climax has been reached and the conflict has been resolved.
In "Making History With Vitamin C", a falling action is the remedies for scurvy; which are ginger, oranges, lemons, lemon juice, and infusion of spruce tree needles.
Resolution
The resolution in a story is the final outcome of the conflict and it involves a change or an insight.
In "Making History With Vitamin C", I thought that the resolution in the story was the fact that Captain Cook cleaned his ship, fed his crew a well-balanced diet, and stopped at ports frequently throughout their journey. Which made his men more fit for work and therefore, his men stayed healthy and did not get scurvy.
Plot
Scurvy is a disease resulting from the deficiency of vitamin C and symptoms include; muscle pain, loss of teeth, and diarrhea. The history of scurvy has been traced back to the Egyptians, Vikings, and 13th century sailors. Voyages farther from the coast and sailors' diets, are influences that result in scurvy. Since their fear of fire on wooden ships for cooking, food was hard to preserve and rotted easily. Which resulted in scurvy being the most common cause of death among sailors and the known remedies were ginger, oranges, lemons, lemon juice, and infusion of spruce tree needles. Although sailors did not believe or know of the remedies. Captain Cook's crew became the first crew ever to have the lowest death rate from scurvy, because he stopped frequently at ports, fed his men a well-balanced diet, and kept his ship in "shipshape". This resulted in his men being more fit for work, so his men stayed healthy and did not get scurvy. Many discoveries would not have been possible if it were not for vitamin C and its role in preventing scurvy among Cook's sailors.
Before the 18th century, a sailor's diet consisted of salted beef and pork or ship's biscuits known as hardtack. The bread was often weevil-infested and very difficult to chew and the sailors diet helped contribute to scurvy because it lacked necessary vitamins and nutrients. Since shipowners were concerned about saving money, the problem of scurvy remained because the shipowners would not purchase better food and spend time stopping at ports.
Author's Purpose
The author's purpose for writing "Making History With Vitamin C" was to inform the readers about the history of scurvy at sea and how to prevent it with vitamin C and other remedies.
Cause & Effect
Inside Interview
Outside Interviews
Analysis
In our interview with James Cook, he talked about his crew and how they remained scurvy free.
Us: How did you keep your men scurvy free? Is there anything you made them do that wasn't required by anyone else?
James Cook: Well, I made sure that the crew cleaned everything! I also required high levels of hygiene and diet.
Us: We heard that your experience exploring an mapping around Nova Scotia, the Gulf of St. Lawrence, and Newfoundland and your accurate observations of the eclipse of the sun really impressed the Royal Society. Is it true?
JC: Yes! I was granted command of the ship Endeavour and was instructed to explore and chart the southern oceans.
Us: Is this the ship you found the Great Barrier Reef with?
JC: That's right! We actually ran into it.
Us: That;s awful! When did that happen?
JC: It was on June 10, 1770.
Us: How did you and your crew make it through?
JC: For 23 hours straight we had manned the pumps as seawater leaked continuously into the hold. It was a close call. We are lucky we made it through.
Us: What else did you discover?
JC: I discovered the Hawaiian Islands, the first circumnavigation of New Zealand, the first charting of the coast of the Pacific Northwest, and the first crossing of the Antarctic Circle
Us: We heard that you fed your crew healthy foods, what is something you would feed them?
JC: One of the foods I would feed them is sauerkraut. It is good for you and prevented scurvy.
Us: How did you get your crew to eat it?
JC: I first made it only available to the upper ranks and then it made the rest of the crew want it. After a week or so I made it available to everyone.
Us: That's really smart! How were you able to carry fresh foods all the time?
JC: We had to stop often to load up on fresh fruits and vegetables.
Us: Didn't you get the Copley gold medal for your demonstration that scurvy was not inevitable?
JC: Yes! I was recognized by the Royal Society and was awarded the highest honor, the Copley gold medal.

We also got an interview with French explorer Jacques Cartier. He told us all about his bad experiences with scurvy.
Us: Has your crew ever been severely affected by scurvy?
Jacques Cartier: Yes! On my second expedition to Newfoundland an Quebec we had been badly affected by a sever outbreak of scurvy.
Us: About how many men did you have on this voyage?
JC: I had about 110 men on this voyage.
Us: How many members of your crew died from it?
JC: Many of them had died from scurvy.
Us: What gave you good results in curing scurvy?
JC: Local Indians suggested a remedy which was an infusion of needles of a spruce tree.
Us: That's interesting! Did it work?
JC: Yes! Almost overnight the symptoms were said to lessen and scurvy rapidly disappeared.
Us: That's great! Did you think it would work?
JC: At first I was skeptical, but once the Indians started treating everyone and it started working, I had no doubt that they knew what they were doing.
Us: How many voyages did you go on to Canada?
JC: I went on three different voyages.
Us: Which voyage did you meet the Indians on?
JC: My crew and I met the indians on the second voyage.
Us: What tribe of Indians was it?
JC: IT was the Iroquois.
Us: Did they help you in another way?
JC: Yes, another thing they did for us was they helped us find the riches on their land.
While interviewing James Cook, we were introduced to his good friend, John Jones, a Naval officer. John shared with us what it's like being being friends with James Cook and what he's like as well as what it's like being on a ship that doesn't have the requirements that James Cook has. He was able to tell us some brand new information.
Us: Did you ever think that James Cook was crazy because of his demands of high diets and hygiene?
John Jones:: At first I thought he was being outrageous with the crazy demands, but after it showed us that it works then I realized that he was just really bright.
Us: Do you think that if many people from your crew got scurvy that you would have been able to discover as much?
JJ: No. I think that if a bunch of us had gotten this disease that we wouldn't be able to do much else other than taking care of ourselves.
Us: Have you had problems with scurvy on expeditions you went on?
JJ: Of course! Everyone is always getting it!
Us: How many people from your crew would you say gets it?
JJ: I would say at least half of my crew gets scurvy on expeditions.
Us: What do you think about the diet James Cook had his crew eat?
JJ: The diet seemed pretty crazy. No one really wanted to eat fruits and vegetables.
Us: Would you eat that kind of diet if you were on his ship, or would you ignore it?
JJ: Of course I would eat it. As his friend, I feel like I would have to eat it and be expected to more than anyone else.
Us: Do you prefer to eat fruits and vegetables or the dried meat and bread when you're sailing?
JJ: Of course I like eating the meat better but I would rather be scurvy free than eating tasty meat.
Us: If you were to lead an expedition, would you make your crew eat fruits and vegetables?
JJ: Maybe. I think it's a good idea, but I'm not sure I would want to keep stopping to get fresh supplies.
Us: But if the diet keeps your crew healthy, wouldn't it be worth the stopping?
JJ: Yes it would be, but we would have to have enough room on the ship.
Us: What about the hygiene requirements? Would you require your crew to be that clean?
JJ: Yes! I think it's a good and effect way to prevent scurvy.
Sailor Andrew Smith stopped by today to have an interview with us about what it was like being on board as a member of the crew with leaders like James Cook. He gave us some insight as to what it was like to be apart of the crew and shared with us some of his experiences.
Us: Did you and the rest of the crew complain about the things James Cook required?
Andrew Smith: Sometimes, yes. It wasn't always easy keeping everything so clean all the time.
Us: Was it worth it for you to listen to him to avoid scurvy?
AS: Yes! I would so much rather have him tell me what to do and listen to what he has to say over getting scurvy any day!
Us: Do you think that your crew was more productive when everyone was healthy?
AS: Yes. Everyone is also in a better mood when they're healthy and don't have as much to complain about.
Us: How did you feel about the diet?
AS: Well, it was okay. I would have liked to have more meat.
Us: But the fruits and vegetables prevented you from getting scurvy.
AS: Yes they did, but it doesn't mean I have to like them. I would rather be healthy but it doesn't mean I have to like it.
Us: Do you know anyone who had gotten scurvy before?
AS: Yes, I had a couple of friends who had gotten it but sadly didn't live to tell me what it was like.
Us: Did you think James Cook was crazy at first because of his requirements?
AS: It was hard to maintain the cleanliness at first, but I don't think he was crazy. I think he knew what he was doing.
Us: Did you think that his diet would prevent people from getting scurvy?
AS: I honestly didn't know if it would really work at first, but it proved to work later on when no one had gotten scurvy.
Us: Would you go on another expedition with James Cook?
AS: Yes. I think he was really concerned about the health of his crew and he kept us healthy.
Us: Did you think you would accomplish as much as you did?
AS: No, not at all! We discovered a lot in one voyage!
"Making History With Vitamin C" was a very informative short story about scurvy and vitamin C. We concluded that if you wanted to know information about scurvy, that this was the story to read. Whether you wanted to read about someone who had the disease or a crew member aboard a ship at sea, you can find the information that you desire. This story was also helpful if you wanted to learn about the remedies for scurvy.

Overview of Scurvy
Scurvy is a disease caused by a diet that lacks vitamin C (absorbic acid).
Patients develop anemia, debility, exhaustion, edema (swelling) in some parts of the body, and sometimes ulceration of the gums and loss of teeth.
The name scurvy comes from the Latin word scorbutus.
Alternative Names: Vitamin C deficiency & Scorbutus
Scurvy is an ancient disease; Egyptians recorded its symptoms as early as 1550 BC.
Scurvy was the scourge of the sea explorers of the Renaissance era (16th-18th centuries) and was first described in 1541 AD by a Dutch physician named Echthius working in Cologne, Germany, who mistakenly thought it was an infectious disease.
Scurvy can be treated with vitamin C supplements.
source: http://emedicine.medscape.com/article/125350-overview
Internal Interviews
Outside Interviews
Title- "Super Vitamin Saves the Sailors"
Full transcript