Standard Grade History - Britain - Population

A set of notes for the first unit of the Standard Grade History course.

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Increased Birth Rate 1830-70

  • Child labour - more money
  • Early marriages - success of whisky/kelp etc. industries encouraged early marriage.
  • Better food supply - agricultural development, railways
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Decreased Birth Rate 1870 - 1930

  • Marriage less attractive (collapse of whisky+kelp indust.)
  • Women and Children forbidden from working in more industries
  • Elementary education became compulsory from 1870s
  • Shortage of men (war/emigration)
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Decreased Death Rate 1870 - 1930

  • Clean Hospitals
  • Safe anaesthetics, better medicine
  • Intro of blood transfusions saved lives
  • Public health improved (councils took on responded to sewage disposal)
  • Councils cleared slums and provided cheap houses for rent
  • Window Tax ended in 1851
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Highland Problems

  • Whisky and Kelp failure
  • Whisky trade crushed by gov, many couldn't afford rent
  • Landowners wanted more rent, b/c of Kelp failure
  • Potato Blight 1830 wiped out crop, many depended on it for survival
  • Landowners evicted poor, replaced with sheep
  • Highland lairds in debt, sell land, new owners keen to get rid of surplus pop.
  • Railways - travel easier - deer estates + shooting hols more popular, evictions to create these.
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Emigration: Push+Pull


  • High rents.
  • Death/disease
  • bad living cons


  • More land, wealth opportunities
  • Prospect of better living cons.
  • Lack of workers in some company.
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  • Irish - escaping high rents+poverty
  • Potato famine killed a million, forced another to emigrate
  • Irish had network of fellow irish in scottish cities - easier to find accomodation and work
  • Skilled in linen and textile
  • Least paid/pleasant jobs - sugar houses
  • Accused of dragging down wages
  • Helped build canals/railways
  • contributed and suffered religious discrimination - catholics vs protestants
  • jews - escaping hatred in Europe
  • Italians and Lithuanians - seekling better economic welfare.
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