Tuesday, 14 August 2012

POPULATION 1840-1940
W W Knox

The land was divided into medium and large sized estates and then carved up
to individual farms. By 1830 sub-tenants had disappeared and the typical

holding was 200 acres for large farms employing six men. Once the land was
divided in this way there was no scope for creating more tenants. The only
exception to this pattern was in north-east Scotland. In Aberdeenshire crofts
formed the majority of holdings.
The hiring system led to labourers and ploughmen contracting themselves to a
farmer for a period of six to twelve months. As the farmer had to provide board
and wages he was unlikely to take on more labour than was necessary to do the
job. When extra hands were needed at, for instance, harvest the farmer simply
employed immigrant Irish labourers.
The hiring and land tenure systems which developed led to the use of less labour
in the rural Lowlands, with the exception of the south-west and north-east.
Displaced farm labourers headed for the nearest town in search of work and
accommodation. By 1851 15% of the population of Peebles-shire had made its
way to Edinburgh. http://www.scran.ac.uk/scotland/pdf/SP2_7migration.pdf

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