British Emigration, 1603–1914 by Alexander Murdoch (auth.)

By Alexander Murdoch (auth.)

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Extra resources for British Emigration, 1603–1914

Sample text

Rather, Scottish merchants who often used ethnic and (even more extensively) kinship connections to build up trade were also open to links with merchants who were not Scots, but shared their professional identities as merchants.

Although emigration from Britain and Ireland slowed after the American Revolution, it continued on a smaller scale in the postwar years, when changing patterns in trade and colonial networks, to a certain extent, initiated a move to alternative destinations for British emigrants, from the new United States to what remained of British North America. Even with a British destination involved, landowners in the Scottish Highlands in particular continued to be concerned about emigration, and engineered the passage of Westminster legislation in 1803 designed to discourage it.

5 In retrospect, emigration from Britain and Ireland in the second half of the eighteenth century was modest, but there was considerable contemporary alarm at the internal migration to London in particular. Emigration from the country to North America after vast lands on that continent were opened up to settlement after the conclusion of peace with France in 1763, seemingly would make the imagery of Goldsmith's 'Deserted Village' a metaphor for the fate of rural Britain and Ireland generally, with consequences that the landed interest in both countries could only view as posing the most immediate threat to the basis of their wealth and their status in British society.

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