The father of the face mask

Dr. Wu Lien-teh (1879-1960) via United States Library of Congress

If there is one person who could lay claim to inventing the use of masks as protection against infection then it is Dr Wu Lien-teh.

Dr Wu’s story is fascinatingly described in Masking for a Friend, where they explain that Dr Wu was instrumental in bringing in face masks to protect first medical staff and then the general population from the deadly Manchurian plague that swept china in 1910-11. This made him a popular hero as the plague receded, and it is likely that this success laid the groundwork for face masks being positively viewed in today’s Asia.

From the article: Masking for a Friend from the excellent design podcast 99% Invisible

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