My local example was only to show how far people walked to work following
about people moving outside their immediate environment.
In Cornwall many mining families, through necessity where the senior male
was the bread winner, moved regularly to where the work was as you suggest.
Certainly the old saying 'born in the west, married in the centre and buried
in the east' (all of Cornwall) held quite true at times.
Also, up to the late 1800s many farming families were declaring one or more
of their family to be miners or streamers indicating the lack of riches in
Further, I seem to remember Prof Philip Payton suggesting that at times up
to 90% of Cornish young men were leaving Cornwall following work trails.
As to agriculture, my attempts to trace families in agricultural holdings in
late medieval times on Bodmin Moor have been almost a waste of time as the
same name rarely appears in two documents which I have taken to show
movement - presumably seeking better land.
One story of dedication involving walking I have is that when I was about 13
I went to a Red Cross Resuscitation Class. The lady I was paired with looked
very old to me then and from her frailty probably was - I got somewhat
chastised for being 'heavy-handed' with her. She had joined the Red Cross
when a girl and, I am told, walked 9 miles each way for her weekly meeting
(Perranporth to Redruth).
----- Original Message -----
From: "Bob Burns" <[log in to unmask]>
To: <[log in to unmask]>
Sent: Wednesday, February 16, 2005 12:37 PM
Subject: Re: A mobile society or not
> On Wed, 16 Feb 2005 10:22:30 -0000, Anthony Blackman
> <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
>>Of the 39 miners drowned in the East Wheal Rose Mining disaster in
> Cornwall in >1841(?) only 2 were from the parish.
> The miners of Cornwall and Devon were probably much more mobile than the
> agricultural workers of the same two counties. Ore fields were
> worked and then abandoned, so miners moved around the area to where the
> work was. I am therefore not surprised to learn that only two of those
> drowned were from the parish.
> Although genetic evidence does not give a definitive answer to the
> of mobility in medieval times, it does indicate certain geographical
> trends. For instance, the highest concentration of the typical Germanic
> Chromosome signature is still to be found in the region of the Danelaw.
> large-scale population mobility had occurred, one might expect to see a
> more homogeneous distribution of genetic signatures than is apparent from
> the surveys.