The obscurity of the origin of a large percentage of typhoid fever outbreaks led many observers to the supposition that perhaps some saprophytic member of the colon group might change under bad hygienic conditions to the typhoid bacillus.
Further investigation revealed the fact that a small percentage of persons after recovering from typhoid fever pass typhoid bacilli in the urine. The attack of typhoid fever in some of these cases had been a number of years before. Continued examinations showed that these cases were comparatively rare, and it did not seem possible that they could account for all outbreaks of typhoid fever, where one could not trace the infection to those having the disease.
In 1902 von Drigalski and Conradi found typhoid bacilli in stools of four persons who had had no typhoid fever symptoms, but had been in contact with typhoid patients. Soon it was found that a number