Nostalgia's picture of stable village England where the rude forefathers of the hamlet slept, where time stood still and generations of Hodges ploughed the patriarchal furrows is - below the proprietorial classes - a myth.... Most migration was local and caterpillar-like, towards the larger towns. But the brave went over the hills and far away, to London , to sea, into the army, or to the colonies....Unmarried farm servants and many journeymen expected to change jobs each year, offering themselves at district hiring fairs.... Seasonal migratory labour (for harvesting, for instance) was vital to the economy....
Monday, 7 December 2009
Reflecting on the day
and... very late, reading Roy Porter's English Society in the Eighteenth Century, see that he talks about the migrant nature of labour in the Regency. He stresses the way people travelled in rural England.