Skip to main content

View Diary: Science Friday: Sixty Men from Ur (217 comments)

Comment Preferences

  •  Migration routes are interesting. (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Audio Guy, N0MAN1968

    In Old Testament times a slave or man cost 20 shekles. About 1830 years later (or 27 lifetimes figuring 50 years life expectancy) you could buy a mans life for 30 pieces of silver or shekles. (30 pieces of silver = 0.9114582 pound or 219 pennies, roughly 11 shillings. Another 1830 years later, the average lifetime was still about the same but now a life was worth 200 shillings.

    When the Articles of Confederation of the United States were drafted, a weaver in Scotland made 18s for six days work. By the War of 1812 that was down to 8 shillings and laborers and blacksmiths were making two shillings.

    To be admitted to the bar or enrolled as a notary, one would pay a tax of £10 in North America, but only £2 in Great Britain.

    (1 pound was worth $15.48 between 1834 and 18.73,
    The pound was divided into twenty shillings, with each shilling equal to twelve pence, making a total of 240 pence to the pound)

    Many of us can trace back to ancestors who arrived someplace in the United States after traveling by water.

    Those who didn't get here that way probably have even more interesting stories to tell but what I'm focused on is how the Industrial revolution changed both travel methods and the cost of passage in terms of a days wage, so dramatically, so fast.

    Of those who arrived in one of the fourteen states that abut the east coast by ship, before the Louisiana Purchase many subsequently journeyed further inland by river. In 1830 passage up to Niagara cost 10s for deck passage and 40s first cabin.

    The voyage along the St Lawrence to the Great Lakes strung people out along eleven states and two Canadian provinces.

    Wilderness land cost 50s an acre to clear.

    I'm not sure we can imagine what travel in the new world was like without roads, or what it took to build one so a farmer could load up a wagon and take his grain to a mill...but

    In 1825 early railroads cost a shilling to ride on the cost of an automobile would have increased to be about 1140 times as much as taking the train in 3 lifetimes

    Given that by the 1830's the lands east of the Mississippi were pretty accessible, and the indians who lived there more or less coming to terms with their new neighbors, the expansion west by canal and railroad and wagon train up through the Civil War
    probably reduced travel times doubling them and doubling them again in a lifetime.

    One hundred seventy seven years later the life of a poor person is still the same life expectancy, but its worth 1,200,000 times what it was in 1830. The life of an average person with double the life expectancy might be worth 10 times that while an executive or professional with the same 50 years befor heart attack might be be worth 350 times that of someone at poverty.

    Live Free or Die --- Investigate, Incarcerate

    by rktect on Fri Mar 09, 2007 at 02:22:41 PM PST

    [ Parent ]

Subscribe or Donate to support Daily Kos.

Click here for the mobile view of the site