Life in the 1760s
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Life in the 1760s. Paul Revere. Timeline. 1763 Pontiac’s Rebellion 1764 Paxton Boys 1768 Regulation formed 1771 Battle of Almance 1796 First American cookbook copyrighted. The Promised Land. Higher standard of living than Europe Lower taxes ¼ of income on imports

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Life in the 1760s

Paul Revere

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1763 Pontiac’s Rebellion

1764 Paxton Boys

1768 Regulation formed

1771 Battle of Almance

1796 First American cookbook copyrighted

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The Promised Land

  • Higher standard of living than Europe

  • Lower taxes

  • ¼ of income on imports

  • Better diet (meat every day)

  • Greater social mobility

  • Firewood.

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Problems in the countryside

  • The Paxton Boys

    • typical of land hungry colonists

    • expand into Ohio river valley (against law)

    • 1763 massacre peaceful Christian Indian settlement

    • 1764 armed march to Philadelphia to gain Pennsylvania support in war against Indians.

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Problems in the countryside

  • The Regulators

    • 1764 start of frontier dissatisfaction with state government - taxes and spending

    • 1768 armed insurrection that grows to include nearly half of North Carolina

      • (similar movements start later in South Carolina as well as in northern states like New York and Massachusetts)

    • Demand that government officials do their jobs! - no taxes, shut down courts

    • defeated at Battle of Alamance 1771.

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Population centers

  • 90% rural vs. present day 5%

    • assuming a city of size 2,000

  • Average daily attendance at US Museum of American History ~13,700.

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Feel for a city

  • Boston

    • Federal style architecture

    • no rich or poor quarters

    • brick buildings

    • narrow, windy roads - some of the first traffic laws, first systemic pattern of driving on right side of the road “because this is what they do in England”.

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Feel for a city

  • New York City

    • former Dutch town

    • badly paved streets

    • “as foul a town as a town surrounded by the tides can be”

    • known for the “foraging pigs” which ran through its streets until after the civil war

    • international flavor - 18 languages spoken on the streets

    • Fraunces Tavern.

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Feel for a city

  • Philadelphia

    • generally agreed as the cleanest, best governed healthiest and most elegant city

    • educated, largest buildings and public spaces (State house), banks, publishing houses, first museum, planned streets, city watch

    • center of American science and thought

    • paved streets and brick sidewalks

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City Living

  • all city sections are within walking distance; housing, commercial, industry

  • Sanitation is primitive: Boston and NY have garbage service from 1680’s Phil in 1762

  • Roads are dirt – some few are stones, often filled with refuse – crowned with side drains – fines exist for failure to remove dead animals from the streets.

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City Living

  • Lighting in streets beginning in 1760’s (whale oil)

  • Fire companies – requirements to build of brick or stone to prevent fires – volunteer departments – fire brigades are common community plans – more advanced fire prevention policies than in similar cities in Europe.

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Urban Work Force

  • By 1750 50% of the urban workforce is either slave or indentured servant

  • Cities become reservoirs of property-less and poorer people (vs. rural)

    • mob violence

  • W/o aristocracy resort to economic hierarchy.

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Urban Work Force

  • Merchants are the top of the social order (northern and middle cities)

  • No specialization except in large cities

  • Major owners of shipping (50%) by Revolution.

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Urban Work Force

  • Skilled Artisans leather aprons, only 10-15% make more than 50% of $ from primary job, most diversify (Paul Revere)

  • Artisans (or mechanics) 20% have real property – land, slaves, servant, homes - 66% have no assets!

    • Income @ full employment is £60 cost to live is £60+ but not at full employment!

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Urban Work Force

  • Sailors harsh conditions, overwork, danger, labor strikes, desertion to avoid impressments – this meant wage wars & higher wages (market economy)

  • Pirates and privateers – collectivity, crew of x5 normal

  • Laborers poorest class of free whites, only able to survive on day jobs.

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  • Most food is meat, grains or alcohol

    • huge quantities

    • frontier meals are game, corn, molasses, peas and beans

  • “The NYC market has 63 types of fish, 52 types of meat, 27 kinds of vegetables, 14 types of shellfish, and a whole pig costs $1”

  • “A Kentucky dinner consisted of bacon, hominy, squirrel broth and whiskey”

  • lack of fresh fruit/vegetables = scurvy and rickets

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Diversion and Recreation

  • Farm and Frontier

    • log rolling, barn raising, corn husking and stump-clearing bees, harvesting celebrations, quilting bees…

    • hunting, skating, fishing, competitive hunting, shooting matches, foot races, eye-gouging fights

  • Urban areas

    • plus horse racing, boat racing, cock fights, quoits, fights.