The Journal of Economic History

Published by Cambridge University Press (CUP)
Online ISSN: 1471-6372
Print ISSN: 0022-0507
Publications
Housing was a major item of English consumer expenditure. Yet little is known of its average quality or rental cost. I estimate average rents, constant-quality rents, and housing quality from 1550 to 1909. Constant-quality rents rose substantially relative to other costs of living during the Industrial Revolution. This probably explains why, despite rising real wages, housing quality appears to have declined from 1760 to 1860. There were, however, substantial quality gains in the eighteenth century prior to the Industrial Revolution. The implications of these new series for measurement of growth during the Industrial Revolution are briefly explored.
 
Based on six sets of witnesses' accounts from the North of England and London over the period 1760 to 1830, new estimates of male labor input during the Industrial Revolution are derived. I present a new method of converting witnesses' activities into estimates of labor input, and derive confidence intervals. Working hours increased considerably. Moderate gains in per capita consumption during the Industrial Revolution have to be balanced against this decline in leisure. This adds further weight to pessimistic interpretations: I calculate that consumption per capita, adjusted for changes in leisure, remained essentially unchanged between 1760 and 1830.
 
This article uses nineteenth-century evidence to calculate the impact of early exposure to malaria-ridden environments on nutritional status and the immune system in America. I estimate the risk of contracting malarial fevers in the 1850s by using correlations between malaria and environmental factors such as climate and geographical features. The study demonstrates that Union Army recruits who spent their early years in malaria-endemic counties were 1.1 inches shorter at enlistment due to malnutrition and were 13 percent more susceptible to infections during the U.S. Civil War as a result of immune disorders than were those from malaria-free regions.
 
Examines age-specific and differential fertility, both marital and total, and nuptiality for census samples of white Philadelphia families headed by native white Americans, Germans, and Irish for 1850-1880. Using Philadelphia Social History Project data, own-children techniques are employed to construct age-standardized child-woman ratios and age-specific total and marital fertility rates. Conclusions are that the low fertility among native whites was due to both low marital fertility and later marriage; that rapid declines in marital fertility occurred among second generation migrants; and that variations existed in marital fertility across occupational groupings within ethnic groups.- Author
 
This article explores how injuries, sickness, and the geographic mobility of Union Army veterans while in service affected their postservice migrations. Wartime wounds and illnesses significantly diminished the geographic mobility of veterans after the war. Geographic moves while carrying out military missions had strong positive effects on their postservice geographic mobility. Geographic moves while in service also influenced the choice of destination among the migrants. I discuss some implications of the results for the elements of self-selection in migration, the roles of different types of information in migration decisions, and the overall impact of the Civil War on geographic mobility.
 
How did the wartime health of Union Army recruits affect their wealth accumulation through 1870? Wounds and exposure to combat had strong negative effects on subsequent savings, as did illnesses while in the service. The impact of poor health was particularly strong for unskilled workers. Health was a powerful determinant of nineteenth-century economic mobility. Infectious diseases' influences on wealth accumulation suggest that the economic gains from the improvement of the disease environment should be enormous. The direct economic costs of the Civil War were probably much greater than previously thought, given the persistent adverse health effects of wartime experiences.
 
It is widely agreed that the burden of housework in the industrialized West did not decrease as much as might be expected since 1880, and may have actually increased for long periods. The article proposes a new explanation: that increases in knowledge on the causes and transmission mechanisms of infectious diseases persuaded women that household members' health depended on the amount of housework carried out. The article traces the origin of this knowledge in the scientific developments of the nineteenth century and describes the mechanisms by which households were persuaded to allocate more time and resources to housework.
 
THE REGIONS OF FRANCE Note: The regional boundaries follow those used by Lachiver.  
COEFFICIENTS OF VARIATION OF WHEAT PRICES BEFORE, DURING, AND AFTER THREE FRENCH FAMINES Source: See the text.  
THE SEASONAL RISE IN WHEAT PRICES, 1680-1719: MONTHLY DATA Paris a Angoulême Rozay Toulouse Montbatzon b Pontoise Grenade
Howdo food markets function in famine conditions? The controversy surrounding this question may benefit from historical perspective. Here we study two massive famines that struck France between 1693 and 1710, killing over two million people. In both cases the impact of harvest failure was exacerbated by wartime demands on the food supply; we ask whether the crises were exacerbated yet further by a failure of markets to function as they did in normal times. The evidence, we conclude, is most consistent with the view that markets in fact helped alleviate these crises, albeit modestly.
 
I examine the effects of an unearned income transfer on the retirement rates and living arrangements of black Union Army veterans. I find that blacks were more than twice as responsive as whites to income transfers in their retirement decisions and 6 to 8 times as responsive in their choice of independent living arrangements. My findings have implications for understanding racial differences in rates of retirement and independent living at the beginning of the twentieth century, the rise in retirement prior to 1930, and the subsequent convergence in black-white retirement rates and living arrangements.
 
PIP The author discusses the problems involved in calculating mortality rates on long-distance sea voyages in the eighteenth century and compares the mortality experience of slaves, other migratory groups, and inland populations.
 
SAMPLE TOWNSHIPS AND THE FIVE AGROECOLOGICAL ZONES Source: Malin, Winter Wheat, preface.  
TWOWAY SCATTER OF DIVERSITY AND FARM SIZE, WITH LOWESS SMOOTHER, BY LAND USE ZONE AND PERIOD Note: Data for all farms (up to 1500 acres in size) in each land use zone. Sources: Manuscript (state and federal) agricultural census returns.  
Farms stood at an ecological frontier in the 1930s. With new and better agricultural machinery, more farms than ever before made the leap to thousand acre enterprises. But did they abandon mixed husbandry in the process? This article explores the origins of the modern relationship between scale and diversity using a new sample of Kansas farms. In 25 townships across the state, between 1875 and 1940, the evidence demonstrates that relatively few plains farms were agents of early monoculture. Rather than a process driven by single-crop farming, settlement was shaped by farms that grew more diverse with each generation.
 
PIP The debate over causes of population change in Britain between the early 18th and mid-19th centuries has centered on the relative importance of changes in birth rates and death rates and whether demographic growth stemmed from economic or "fortuitous" origins, and the understanding of the process of fertility change during industrialization. Conventional wisdom, espoused by T.S. McKeown and R.G. Brown, stated that as long as mortality was high, an increase in the birth rate would have little effect on the population growth. Improvements in the environment (standards of living are the most acceptable explanation of the decline of mortality. This position is contradicted in Wrigley's study of Colyton, a village in Devon. Wrigley argues that restraint of fertility in Colyton is the result of a system of family limitation deliberate in that social or individual action caused fewer children to be born. There are many methods and versions of birth control. Coitus interruptus may have been the most important method in the 17th and early 18th centuries. The stereotype of a high birth rate, high death rate community with population size limited entirely by positive checks is inappropriate. Britain may have been in a state of homeostatic adjustment based on a high elasticity expedited by contraceptive practice and nuptiality patterns.
 
The Relationship of Cumulative 1965-1968 CAP Spending to the EOA Apportionment Index
County-Level, Per-Capita Community Action Program Spending, 1965-1968 
This article presents a quantitative analysis of the geographic distribution of spending through the 1964 Economic Opportunity Act (EOA). Using newly assembled state- and county-level data, the results show that the Johnson administration directed funding in ways consistent with the War on Poverty's rhetoric of fighting poverty and racial discrimination: poorer areas and those with a greater share of nonwhite residents received systematically more funding. In contrast to New Deal spending, political variables explain very little of the variation in EOA funding. The smaller role of politics may help explain the strong backlash against the War on Poverty's programs.
 
Forests in Time: The Environmental Consequences of 1,000 Years of Change in New England. Edited by David R. Foster and John D. Aber. New Haven, CT: Yale University Press, 2004. Pp. xiv, 477. $45.00. - - Volume 64 Issue 4 - BROOKS KAISER
 
Top-cited authors
Barry R. Weingast
  • Stanford University
Avner Greif
  • Stanford University
Claudia Goldin
  • Harvard University
Harold Demsetz
  • University of California, Los Angeles
Richard Steckel
  • The Ohio State University