Another Higgingbotham at his best. A great read for anyone with a genuine interest in the past, especilly of those unfortunates who spent time living in the Workhouse. A good collection. As an Historian, my investigation into the Victorian era from the poor classes to the rich is vast and little collection has been very eye opening.
This book makes me appreciate what we have now compared with the days of the Workhouses. It is hard to imagine a bowl of gruel refered to as greasy water, this was one the inmates meals usually once a day.A very good book for the "good read value" or for helping research family history. Brilliantly compiled and written by Peter Higginbotham.
I bought this as I have a particular interest in this area of history and first person accounts of workhouses are naturally not all that common, especially not all in one place. It is basically a collection of short, first hand accounts arranged into logical chapters by one of the most popular workhouse historians at the moment. The book covers inmates, staff, and social enquirers among others and features the likes of Charlie Chaplain and Henry Morton Stanley. A lot of the accounts are obviously sad and tragic but a lot are surprisingly positive, the short stories make the book suitable for 'dipping in and out of' or for reading in a couple of sittings. I would recommend this for people who have a general interest, have workhouse ancestry or for poor law students - bearing in mind that a lot of the sources and accounts are biased.
If we had to live as these people did in this day and age then I do not think that many of use would survive, we learn how hard people lives where and how much of a disgrace some people found going into the workhouse was , eventhough they had no choice if they wanted to survive. The treatment of children and young babies give you food for thought as well as the rule that had tobe abided by I think that every young person should read this to see how much life has chnge for the better.
A very good read. Lot's of information on life in the workhouse ,told by evidence given by inmates ,Governors and under cover reporters of the time . I was drawn to this book and found it hard to put down . Recommend this to any one who has any interest in the Workhouse , the food and accommodation and the characters that visited these institutions .