Rural life was very different to urban life in the C19th. Agriculture was the mainstay occupation and all family members had to be involved
- It was recognized in the 1876 Education Act, that children in rural communities were needed to help with agricultural work and were allowed up to six weeks absence from school a year.
- In many rural schools, attendance was irregular
- Reminders that families lived at or near subsistence level in can be found in school logs, ‘Many of the scholars stayed away to collect firewood, the high price of coal being the reason’.
- Schools in rural areas tolerated absences as long as the pupils were gainfully employed, examples from school log books in Hampshire include hop picking, nut and berry gathering and stone collecting.
- School log books are great for adding nuggets of information about your family history, they breathe life into the lives of the children in our trees.
- Explore our Counties and Parish themes for some insights or go to Intriguing Family History to find more resources