Tuesday, 14 January 2014

Better in England or the colonies?

The BBC have a short video (appears to need flash) as part of the post at http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-london-25487329. Australia or jail - which was worse?
is the question being addressed, amongst others, for British criminals convicted at the Old Bailey in the 18th and 19th Centuries. "Historians are examining the court records of every person convicted at the London courthouse between 1785 and 1875. They will then assess how many of those jailed in Britain reoffended and assess immigration records in Tasmania - where many convicts were sent - as well as biometric data and genealogical research."

Could the same approach be applied to a similar question, were "orphan" children in Britain better off in the long run remaining there or emigrating to Canada as home children? Unfortunately the approach to this question is presently anecdotal; advocates on either side, often descendants of home children who had positive or negative experiences, cast more heat than light on the question.

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