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Transcript of Victorian Era
What is a workhouse?
-the stricken, orphans, depleted widows, the obsolete elderly, the sick, and the deranged were the ones who ended up in workhouses
-also referred to as a bastille
-an attempt to end the problems of poverty
Why were poor laws created?
- to save money on the poor
- to give the poor a place to stay
- to motivate the poor to work hard and support themselves
Life in Workhouses and Work hours
Life in the Workhouses
-life in the workhouses was hard
-workhouses were like prisons
-men, women, and children were always separate; if you were under 16 you were considered a girl and under 13 was a boy
-work was meant to keep people busy and to subdivise the cost of relief from the parish
-had to wake up at 5 am and lights out was 8 pm
-inmates worked from 7-12 and 1-7
Food in the Workhouses
Here's a video about some of the jobs in the workhouse
Workhouses and Poor Laws
By: Meghan McCabe, Michaela Guerin, and Lexi Lombardi
What were poor laws?
-would ensure that the poor could work, live in workhouses, be fed, and clothed
-children would receive an education
-not liked by all people in the Victorian Era
Who did poor laws effect?
- the paupers would have to work several hours each day
- effected the poor
- The meals provided little nutrition and were described as "a slow process of starvation"
-Breakfast: 6oz. of bread
-Lunch: 4oz. of bacon and 3oz. of bread or potatoes
-Supper: 6oz. of bread and 2oz. of cheese
-The diet was only between 137 and 182 ounces a week
-Inmates had to eat with their finger since no cutlery was provided.
-All meals were taken in silence until 1842.
Did the poor laws help?
- ultimately, the poor laws failed
- the poor were sometimes scared of the poor laws and workhouses
- there were even riot some parts of towns to get out of going to workhouses
Not-so Fun Fact #2
When a man was told he could leave, his whole family went with him, and when a man was brought into the workhouse, his family went, too.
Not-so fun fact 1:
In one part of the workhouse, 104 girls had to sleep four or more to a bed. The rooms were fairly small for this many people, with dimensions of 16.5 feet wide and ceilings 7 feet high. To no surprise, 89 of the 104 girls fell ill.
Not-so fun fact #3
One of the jobs at the workhouse was to crush bones by hands to make fertilizer. Sometimes the inmates were so hungry they would they would eat the remaining meat left on the bone. Although the bones were not always from animals.
http://www.judandk.force9.co.uk/workhouse.html (the readwritethink website)
Thanks for watching!
(a short) History of Workhouses
1601-gave responsibitly of poor to local parishes
1834-made poor live in workhouses
1926-workhouses were banned (at this time there were 226,000 inmates and 600 workhouses)