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Health Care and Government Policy

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Laurinda Abreu

Not just one countryside

Life chances in pre-industrial Sweden

Jan Sundin

Résumé

The ‘urban penalty’, i.e. higher urban mortality compared with the countryside, existed at a national level in Sweden until the twentieth century. However, at a regional and local level, the urban-rural dichotomy was less true. In three countryside parishes in 1750-1859, three different patterns emerge. Socioeconomic and geographical factors defined life chances from cradle to grave. In a suburban parish, in a cohort born in the 1790s, about half of the females died before they were 30 years old and half of the males died before they were 20! This example is at the worse end of the scale with survival rates below the Swedish average – but it is not unique. In contrast, among those born during the same decade in a forest parish, about half of the females lived until they were 60 years old and half of the males were still alive at the age of 50! This second example is at the positive end with survival rates much better than the Swedish average. A third example, an iron foundry, had low infant mortality but high adult mortality, resulting in survival rates close to the Swedish average.

Entrées d'index

Texte intégral

Not just one ‘countryside’

1The ‘urban penalty’ is a familiar name for the health risks and high mortality that for a long time characterised European cities, in contrast to the countryside with its much lower mortality. In Sweden, this situation existed until the end of World War I. It is tempting to think that this was a general pattern, similar for both sexes, in all age groups, for all cities and all places in the countryside. This study will show that the ‘countryside’ covers a more diversified reality. It looks in detail at three parishes in the province of Östergötland in 1750-1860, each representing a specific geographical and socioeconomic regime. Sund is situated in the southern forest area of the province, at that time dominated by farmers working their own land and crofters. Ekeby lies in the same part of the province, the difference from Sund being the nearby iron works at Boxholm, founded and expanded during the last three decades of the eighteenth century. In contrast, Landeryd lies on the more densely populated plains in the centre of the province with the city of Linköping as its neighbour.

2Agrarian society was based on a male-dominated social hierarchy. In parishes like Sund, peasants on their own land were dominant. Below these came crofters, a few craftsmen and soldiers, with the landless, unskilled workers and the totally destitute at the bottom. On the plains, such as in Landeryd, members of the local nobility owned most of the land, with tenants on larger estates and fewer farmers holding their own land. An even more pronounced hierarchy existed in an iron foundry like Ekeby. A farmer on his own land had a relatively wide range of autonomy but the status and power of a foundry owner was almost total. Even the workers were part of the social ladder, from the skilled master craftsmen at the top to the totally unskilled or retired at the bottom. The size of the working population living at the foundry was limited, since a handful of skilled blacksmiths consumed vast areas of forest around the waterfall, to meet their extensive needs for heating and mechanical energy. However, once farmers, crofters, charcoal burners, horse drivers and other workers who directly or indirectly served the foundry were added, the working men and their families would usually number several hundred. In Sweden about 5% of the total population was directly or indirectly linked to a foundry in the early nineteenth century. Hence, iron foundries formed a proto-industry, the equivalent of textile production further south in Europe.

3All types of work were no doubt physically hard with occupational hazards ever present. Those engaged in charcoal burning, blasting and forging had to endure a milieu with air polluted with soot and other unhealthy particles in temperatures that shifted rapidly from extreme heat to freezing cold. Domestic living space was limited and overcrowded, often consisting of just a kitchen/living room and a sleeping chamber. The families of those working at the foundry itself usually had to share their space with several others in the same house, facilitating the spread of virulent diseases.

4By law, each local community had to care for those who were unable to support themselves. In an agricultural parish this was handled by the church council with the least possible economic burden. In the foundries, it was the owner’s obligation within a paternalistic system. Obviously, the provision of basic welfare depended on the benevolence of the individual owner. One way of securing a skilled workforce was for instance the gratial, which guaranteed workers housing and food for the final years of their lives. Larger foundries often hired a medical doctor who introduced ‘modern’ ideas of public health, for instance about breastfeeding and general cleanliness. In the smaller foundries, it at least meant hiring a qualified midwife. The era of traditional, proto-industrial iron foundries culminated during the second half of the eighteenth and the first half of the nineteenth century. At the same time, the demographic transition entered its second stage.

5The number of landless, unskilled workers grew rapidly before any sign of industrialisation. Fortunately, this is also the period when the demographic and social history of Swedish local communities can be studied in the greatest detail, thanks to the state’s growing interest in the size and physical quality of its population. The Tabellverk, a forerunner of Statistics Sweden, collected detailed data from all Swedish parishes starting in 1749 and ending in 1859.

  • 1 All figures are based on the parish tables delivered to the Tabellverket, covering the period 1750- (...)

Figure 1 - Population size in Sund, Ekeby and Landeryd, 1750-18541

Figure 1 - Population size in Sund, Ekeby and Landeryd, 1750-18541

Figure 2 - Occupations of male heads of households in Sund, Ekeby and Landeryd, 1805-1855

Figure 2 - Occupations of male heads of households in Sund, Ekeby and Landeryd, 1805-1855

6The clergy had to consult the ministerial records of baptisms, weddings and funerals and deliver statistical tables with the numbers of births, marriages and deaths for each parish every year. Mortality was also broken down by causes of death, sex and age group. Four versions of the pre-printed form with slight changes in the categories of causes of death were used between 1749 and 1830 (1749-73; 1774-1801; 1802-20; 1821-30). The reliability of these tables has been evaluated and is in general satisfactory. The same can be said about the tables describing the composition of the whole population by age group and social status, at least from 1775 to 1855, when they were produced every fifth year. Combined, the two sources can be used to calculate age- and sex-specific mortality (Sköld, 2001).

7Swedish parishes in the countryside had a relatively modest population size. Population growth was slow in Sund and Landeryd between 1775 and 1820, after which it became more evident up to the middle of the nineteenth century. The population in Sund parish grew slowly but with continuous negative net migration. In contrast, the population in Ekeby increased more rapidly from the 1780s onwards (Figure 1) during the expansion of Boxholm’s iron foundry with mining, blast furnaces and forges. It started in 1754 but the real growth took place after consolidation in 1782.

  • 2 These tables were also computed and delivered by the local clergy in 1749-1855, but for these three (...)

8In 1775, the Ståndstabeller2 delivered by the clergy in Ekeby, Sund and Landeryd indicated a similar social pattern in all three parishes (Figure 2). A little over 40% of the male heads of households were farmers, either on their own land or as tenants on larger estates. Another 30% were heads of crofter households, while the rest consisted of soldiers, craftsmen, etc. In 1800, Ekeby had added a group of masters, journeymen, apprentices and unskilled workers. Fifty years later, farmers constituted an even smaller group in Ekeby. The biggest change had taken place in Landeryd, where farmers made up only about 20% of the male heads of households in 1855, and less than half of those owned the land they worked. In Ekeby, the foundry owner had taken on an important role as a landowner as well. In contrast, Sund was still dominated by farmers, sometimes tenants but more often on their own land.

  • 3 Figures with numbers preceded by ‘A’ may be found in the Appendix.

9Due to the economic structure, the percentage of women was higher in Sund than in Ekeby and Landeryd (Figure A1)3 but the crude birth rate was still higher in the latter two parishes (Figure A2). The foundry in Ekeby provided young people with a steady income and the possibility of marrying and starting a family at an earlier age than in purely agrarian areas. In a parish like Sund, the younger generation had to live as farmhands in another household until they could inherit or otherwise acquire a plot of land to work as farmers or at least crofters and start a family, or alternatively emigrate elsewhere.

Infant mortality

Figure 3 - Infant mortality rate in Sund, Ekeby, Landeryd and Sweden, 1750-1859

Figure 3 - Infant mortality rate in Sund, Ekeby, Landeryd and Sweden, 1750-1859
  • 4 On regional differences and ways to carry out a deep analysis of infant mortality in eighteenth and (...)

10Before 1810 the infant mortality rate (IMR, i.e. deaths before 1 year of age) was about 20% in Sweden. After that year, the IMR fell steadily to about 15% by the middle of the nineteenth century. Since the overwhelming majority of the population lived outside the towns, the national average was closer to that of agrarian, countryside parishes. Trends in the three parishes were the same as in Sweden as a whole, but the levels differed (Figure 3). In Landeryd, the parish close to the city of Linköping, the rate was usually well above the national average and fluctuated sharply until the 1830s. In the foundry parish of Ekeby the IMR also fluctuated considerably until 1810, but at a level below the national average. In the forested, agrarian parish of Sund, the IMR was mostly equal to the Swedish average until around 1900, except for three decades in the early nineteenth century. From 1811 onwards, the national IMR was reported separately for cities and countryside (Figure A3). Ekeby’s IMR usually followed the average for the countryside, Landeryd’s was higher until the 1830s, while Sund’s IMR was much lower than the average for the Swedish countryside after 1810.4

11Among the factors that might cause differences in IMR, being born within or outside marriage often tends to be present. However, in this case the illegitimacy rate and its development over time does not indicate such an explanation (Figure A4). Until 1820, the rate was usually highest in Sund, where the IMR was lowest. After that date, the illegitimacy rate doubled in all three parishes until 1860, i.e. at the same time as the IMR dropped. The IMR for children born to single mothers from 1810 onwards in cities, in rural areas and in our three parishes was relatively higher in Landeryd in the first three decades of the nineteenth century.

12Health problems of mothers can be reflected by the incidence of stillbirths (Figure A5). For Sund and Ekeby the parish tables show that the numbers of stillbirths were on average 2.5-3% of the numbers of live births in both the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, levels that are neither strikingly high nor unexpectedly low. In Landeryd, the rates were higher. Suspiciously few cases were reported there in 1790-1809, probably because the vicar was less willing to record them. Still, Landeryd’s average for 1750-1809 was close to 4% while for 1810-59 it was above 6.5 %. The 1770s were a hard period with crop failures and several epidemics, when Landeryd’s rate was at its highest level. In 1810-59, the rate grew over time, probably reflecting an increase in the poorest segment of its population.

Causes of death

Figure 4 - Reported causes of death among infants, 1774-1801

Figure 4 - Reported causes of death among infants, 1774-1801

Figure 5 - Symptoms of infections among infants, 1774-1801

Figure 5 - Symptoms of infections among infants, 1774-1801

13Sweden, a sparsely populated country, had great difficulty in serving the countryside with any type of medical expertise during the period under study. Yet the clergy had to submit tables of all deaths broken down by age, sex and pre-printed causes of death! Of course, the results do not satisfy the modern historian trying to give a reasonably reliable picture of actual mortality. This is particularly true before 1774, when the vicars who did the job found it very difficult to satisfy the Table Commission on this point. To some extent, the reports became more specific from the last decades of the eighteenth century onwards. A course in medicine was given in Uppsala specifically for the clergy – we do not know how many really attended, but it was a sign of a more explicitly expressed duty of priests to take some responsibility for their parishioners’ physical well-being. Contemporary ‘causes’ were often rather symptoms of different causes/diseases. However, certain severe diseases were easier to identify and more familiar to the producers of the tables. Because of this relative uncertainty in the tables of causes of death, the first form, covering the period 1749-1773, has not been used. For the second form, covering 1774-1801, the causes are sorted into four categories, based on specific diseases or indications (Figure 4).

14The category Infections contained the overwhelming majority of cases. Stroke, according to the understanding of the time, just meant that the death occurred suddenly. Accidents were quite few in number, and Other contained a few cases that could not be identified as belonging to any of the previous three categories. The great difference between the parishes is the relatively low total rates for Sund and Ekeby and the high rate for Landeryd. A complicating fact is the many unknown causes. These probably hid a considerable number of infectious diseases. Infections (Figure 5) were of course of many different kinds. Some were given as specific diseases, such as measles, smallpox or whooping cough. All three of these causes were present in all three parishes during the last decades of the eighteenth century. Dysentery, given the symptomatic diarrhoea that always follows, could also hide other problems related to the intestinal system. Stomach was a category covering water- or food-borne diseases.

15The first decade of the nineteenth century was affected by frequent outbreaks of infectious diseases, to a considerable extent brought back home by soldiers from the war in Finland between Sweden and Russia in 1808-09 (Figure A6). Even Sund lost on average almost 20% of its infants in 1802-20. The vaccination campaigns against smallpox using Jenner’s method started a few years after 1800 and seem to have been successful in Sund and Ekeby but somewhat less so in Landeryd (Figure A7). Apart from smallpox, the remaining identified causes occurred in a similar pattern in all three parishes, with ‘stomach’, whooping cough and respiratory symptoms as the major killers. The last available data were provided on the form covering 1821-30 (Figures A8, A9). The obvious difference is that ‘unknown’ was recorded as ‘stroke’, which did not make the results clearer to interpret.

Mortality among children 1-9 years old, 1750-1854

Figure 6 - Mortality among boys 1-9 years old, 1750-1854

Figure 6 - Mortality among boys 1-9 years old, 1750-1854

Figure 7 - Mortality among girls 1-9 years old, 1750-1854

Figure 7 - Mortality among girls 1-9 years old, 1750-1854

16Since the Tabellverk ended its collection of parish tables in 1859, we only have data on population size until 1 January 1855. That means that the last period of calculable age-specific mortality rates is 1750-1854. For children 1-9 years of age, the rates for boys were slightly higher than those for girls (Figures 6-7). Generally, before 1840, mortality was highest in Landeryd, tracking the Swedish average, but significantly lower in Ekeby and lower still in Sund. There was a downward trend all the way from 1770 to 1850-54 in Landeryd and Ekeby. This trend was less marked in Sund, where the rates were quite low from the beginning of the period. The four curves came closest to each other in the mid-nineteenth century, differing by only 1.5-2.5%. In the last quarter of the eighteenth century, the differences were almost completely caused by exposure to infections (Figures A10-A15). The main contrast between Ekeby and Sund lay in the incidence of spotted fever and dysentery, whereas ‘fevers’ and symptoms related to respiratory problems contributed most to the difference between Landeryd and Sund. Smallpox epidemics were recorded as causing only a few deaths. In the first two decades of the nineteenth century, infections of all types were still the major cause of death. Smallpox disappeared completely except for a small number of cases in Landeryd.

17In 1821-30, various infections and to some extent ‘stroke’ continued to be the main killers of children between the ages of 1 and 9, although at a lower level than before. A few deaths from smallpox were reported in all three parishes in 1821-30. Distributing sufficient volumes of the vaccine was one of the difficulties that local vaccinators had to face. The vaccination rate in Sund was conspicuously low in the 1820s when the smallpox epidemic occurred. Figure A16 shows the estimated vaccination rates in Sund and Ekeby. Ekeby’s paternalistic government may have been more efficient in securing often higher rates than in Sund, which lay on the periphery of communications.

Mortality at 10-19/24 years of age

Figure 8 - Mortality among boys 10-19 years old, 1750-1854

Figure 8 - Mortality among boys 10-19 years old, 1750-1854

Figure 9 - Mortality among girls 10-19 years old, 1750-1854

Figure 9 - Mortality among girls 10-19 years old, 1750-1854
  • 5 A pioneer in analysing these data is Gunnar Fridlizius, e.g. Fridlizius, 1988. See also for instanc (...)

18Age-specific studies of mortality among adults in the eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries are relatively few. The reason is of course that although deaths can be distributed according to age, the population at risk of dying is often unknown. For Sweden, the aggregated data in the parish tables have been used to calculate age- and sex-specific rates, which can be used in this study for comparisons.5 Among teenagers, Sund’s mortality rates were constantly below the Swedish average, while Ekeby and Landeryd often reported rates well above the average until the nineteenth century (Figures 8-9). Then, fluctuations due to epidemics became less visible. Almost all deaths in 1774-1801 were attributed to different types of infectious diseases (Figures A17, A18). In Sund, most of the few deaths that happened were reported as caused by dysentery or respiratory symptoms. Dysentery also appeared in Ekeby but almost all deaths were said to be due to respiratory problems.

19Girls in Ekeby suffered most and, unlike boys, they also died of fever. The rates for girls in Landeryd were often above the Swedish average, whilst mortality for girls in Sund was lower than average. Tuberculosis of the lungs appeared under different labels during this period and it is not too rash to think that this was a potential contributing factor. In Sweden as a whole, TB was often more frequent among females than among males in this age group. One plausible explanation for the higher mortality of females is that young women spent more time indoors than young men. Living space in the foundry parish of Ekeby was cramped, while the men were usually at work in the open air or in the forges from a very early age. Young women in Sund, on the other hand, used to spend much of their time outdoors in the fields or barns.

20Being further away from the major communication routes might also have delayed the arrival of TB in Sund as a late-nineteenth-century endemic disease. Except for girls in Sund, both sexes experienced a similar mortality rate and range of diseases in 1802-1820. Both TB and pneumonia were visible causes of death. What was recorded as ‘fevers’ may also of course have resulted from airborne infections. Some boys in Ekeby died from accidents, various types of which could occur at an iron foundry.

21Unfortunately, the parish tables on causes of death no longer report causes of death in five-year cohorts on the last two forms, for 1802-20 and 1821-30 (Figures A19-A22). Therefore, we can only calculate the rates for three age groups: 10-24, 25-49 and 50+. But we can see that teenage mortality was mostly caused by an outbreak of measles and the return of smallpox in the 1820s. Since the youngest had not been exposed to smallpox epidemics for more than a decade, smallpox was now dangerous for a few, probably unvaccinated teenagers. Girls in Sund continued to have low mortality during the first decades of the nineteenth century. There is no indication of a more favourable nutritional regime for girls in Sund than in Landeryd and Ekeby. A more plausible explanation, therefore, is that Sund was further away from the main sources of exposure and people led a working life outdoors in less-crowded environments.

Mortality among adults 20/25-39/49 years of age

Figure 10 - Mortality among adult men 20-39 years old, 1750-1854

Figure 10 - Mortality among adult men 20-39 years old, 1750-1854

Figure 11 - Mortality among adult women 20-39 years old, 1750-1854

Figure 11 - Mortality among adult women 20-39 years old, 1750-1854

22Before the mid-nineteenth century the decline in mortality in Sweden was mainly concentrated in the younger age groups, except for a modest decline among 20-39-year-old women. Even in this age group, mortality in Sund was consistently and substantially below the Swedish average all the time from 1750 to 1854. Ekeby and, even more so, Landeryd often suffered from an above-average mortality rate with major peaks during certain decades, especially in Landeryd (Figures 10-11). The unhealthy decades of the Napoleonic wars, which spread germs from place to place, took its toll in the central parts of the county of Östergötland.

23Lesser exposure to different types of infections and epidemics was, according to the parish tables for 1774-1801, the main difference between Sund’s low rates and Ekeby’s and Landeryd’s much higher rates among both men and women aged 20-39. Respiratory symptoms and fevers were said to cause most deaths in all parishes but at different levels. Accidents were also significant causes, mostly among men. These covered a diversity of lethal events, for instance drowning, being killed by falling trees or being kicked by a horse (Figures A23, A24).

24As mentioned above, we have to analyse the causes of death for a wider age group, 20-49 years old, after 1801. However, the pattern was not different from the previous period. Respiratory symptoms dominated, followed by ‘fevers’. Landeryd continued to distance itself negatively from Sund and Ekeby, no doubt with a considerable share of pneumonia and TB (Figures A25, A26).

25Even in the 1820s, women in Sund were almost totally protected from the respiratory symptoms and ‘fevers’ attacking their counterparts in Ekeby and Landeryd, while the male mortality rates seem to be relatively equal in the three parishes (Figures A27, A28). The almost total absence of respiratory symptoms and fevers among women in agrarian Sund is striking. Less frequent exposure due to less communication with the world outside their own parish is one obvious explanation. A healthier outdoor life is another. Women’s nutritional status may also have been better in Sund, where a mix of cereals and products of animal husbandry was available, and forests and lakes made it possible to hunt and fish for a supplementary supply of food.

Mortality at 40-59 years of age

Figure 12 - Mortality among men 40-59 years old, 1750-1854

Figure 12 - Mortality among men 40-59 years old, 1750-1854

Figure 13 - Mortality among women 40-59 years old, 1750-1854

Figure 13 - Mortality among women 40-59 years old, 1750-1854

26The parish tables allow us to analyse the causes of death for adults between 40 and 59 years old until 1802 (Figures 12-13). As expected, we find the same main result as for younger adults. Sund’s rates were without exception below the rates for Sweden, while Ekeby and Landeryd were usually above the average. The sharp fluctuation in the rates for the latter two parishes indicates that they were more exposed to frequent outbreaks of epidemics than Sund. The rates for women were on average lower than those for men in Sweden as a whole, to some extent in Ekeby and significantly so in Sund. This was different in Landeryd, where the rates for women were usually equal to those of men or, during the last peak in 1810-19, even higher. The beginning of the demographic transition towards declining mortality that was evident for the younger age groups did not appear until the 1840s, when the epidemic peaks became less pronounced. This was probably due to a combination of the period – with less exposure to infections – and the cohort, which was now composed of a generation that had been less weakened by infectious diseases than their predecessors.

27The reports on causes of death for the 40-59 age group during the period 1774-1801 complete the picture of Sund as being the healthiest of the three parishes for all ages (Figures A29, A30). The picture was very similar to that of younger adults, with respiratory symptoms and ‘fevers’ dominating. Less exposure to epidemics no doubt had an important impact on this age group as well. In addition, not having been attacked by as many infectious viruses and bacteria at younger ages was probably a positive factor. It could be argued that the fewer survivors of high exposure at younger ages might have resulted in a generation that was more resistant when older. There is, however, no proof that such a selective factor may have had any visible effect in this case or in Sweden as a whole. As said before, the parish tables on causes of death for 1802-20 and 1821-30 only provide us with information on a group lumped together from their 50th birthday upwards. As with younger adults, we find the same dominance of respiratory symptoms and ‘fevers’ as well as a new category of supposed death due to ‘old age’.

Survivorship in Sund, Ekeby and Landeryd

Figure 14 - Rates of survival to 0-60 years of age for males and females born in 1790-99

Figure 14 - Rates of survival to 0-60 years of age for males and females born in 1790-99

Figure 15 - Rates of survival to 20-60 years of age for males and females aged 20 in 1810-19

Figure 15 - Rates of survival to 20-60 years of age for males and females aged 20 in 1810-19

28What did the different mortality rates mean for the chances to live until a certain age? Figure 14 shows the proportions of people born in the 1790s who survived until ages 0 to 60. The Swedish average life expectancy at birth (E0) for a cohort born in 1790-1815 was 35.35 years for men and 38.44 years for women. Looking at our parishes, we find that life expectancy for men in Landeryd was far below this level. Half of the birth cohort would be dead before they were 25 years old. For women in the same parish, chances were a bit better but they would still live more than five years less than the Swedish average. In both cases, high infant and child mortality was the main reason for the sad prospect. In Ekeby, the curves for men and women follow each other closely and their life expectancy seems to have been about the same as the Swedish average. In Sund, however, the male and female curves distance themselves from Ekeby’s and continue to do so until age 40. There was also a widening gap between men and women during the same ages, which means that life expectancy at birth was about 50 years for men and almost 60 years for women! The result for Sund is remarkable given the time.

29Figure 15 shows what happens when mortality before the 20th birthday is excluded. Differences still exist but the gap between Landeryd and Ekeby is narrower. The Swedish average for those who were 15 years old and born in 1791-1815 was 55.64 years for men and 57.90 years for women. For those who had reached the age of 20, the chances were of course better; that means that the figures for men and women in Landeryd were probably a little below what was expected in Sweden and those for Ekeby might be close to the Swedish average. Once more, Sund stands out as the positive exception, since 60% of the men and 70% of the women who were in their twenties in the years 1810-19 would still be alive when they were 60 years old. It must be remembered that these survival rates are not exact but a good representation of the relative differences between the agrarian parish of Sund, the foundry parish of Ekeby and the suburban parish of Landeryd. In the introduction to our three parishes, we noticed that women made up a larger share of the population in Sund than in Ekeby and Landeryd.

30This tour through all the graphs ends with an example showing how this female surplus was distributed by age in Sund in the year 1800 (Figure A31). Two peaks emerge, one in the 30-39-year age group and a second in the over-60s. Migration was seldom an alternative for people aged 60 or older. Sund’s female surplus would have been even larger in the younger groups had everybody stayed in the parish where they were born. That was of course not the case. More moved out than into Sund, especially when opportunities did not materialise at home. A new destination was available after the mid-nineteenth century – North America. The forest areas where Sund was situated were among the main sources of transatlantic migrants. The reason – the difficulties of feeding oneself and one’s family – has been described in novels and movies. Less remembered are the healthy lives, which contributed to the population pressure.

Conclusions

31The analysis of mortality and causes of death clearly shows that different demographic regimes existed side by side in the preindustrial province of Östergötland. One is represented by the parish of Landeryd. Exposure to infections and a rapidly growing landless proletariat contributed to high mortality figures, although at slightly lower levels than in its urban neighbour of Linköping. But Landeryd also copied Linköping’s sharp decline in infant and child mortality after 1820. Landeryd may therefore be considered an example of a suburban milieu.

32Ekeby represents a typical iron foundry community. The paternalistic culture with an early debut of trained midwives contributed to low infant and child mortality, while adult mortality figures were close to the Swedish averages of that time. Among the negative factors for adults were hard working conditions and crowded living spaces, countered by some basic welfare provided by the foundry owners.

33In Sund, we find astonishingly low mortality figures in all age groups. Low exposure to diseases was no doubt an important explanation for this forest small-farmer pattern. The figures indicate relatively good and hygienic child care. Among adults, the women stand out. Their healthy lives and high survival rates are probably linked to their living and working conditions. Not only did they often live far from their neighbours, they also spent most of their working time outside, milking cows in the barns, harvesting in the fields, picking berries in the woods, etc. Exposure to various respiratory complaints, including lung tuberculosis, was therefore lower than in Landeryd and Ekeby.

34As they are based on a single case for each type of environment, the conclusions are of course preliminary.

35For future work, two strategies seem reasonable to make generalisations safer:

  1. Adding at least two more socioeconomic and topographic examples in Östergötland – in the Baltic coastal area and on the western plains away from major cities.

  2. Analysing a couple of parishes as similar to each other as possible in topography and socioeconomic factors.

Bibliographie

Edvinsson, S. and Nilsson, U. (2000). Urban mortality in Sweden during the 19th century. In A. Brändström and L.-G. Tedebrand (Eds), Population Dynamics during Industrialization (pp. 39-82). Umeå: Umeå universitet.

Edvinsson, S., Rogers, J. and Brändström, A. (2001). Regional variations in infant mortality in Sweden during the first half of the 19th century. In L.-G Tedebrand and P. Sköld (Eds), Nordic Demography in History and Present Day Society (pp. 145-164). Umeå: Umeå universitet.

Edvinsson, S, Brändström, A. and Rogers, J. (2008) Did midwives make a difference? A study of infant mortality in nineteenth century Sweden. In A. Sandén (Ed.), Se människan: Demografi, rätt och hälsa (pp. 131-150). Linköping: LiU Tryck.

Fridlizius, G. (1988). Sex-differential mortality and socio economic change: Sweden 1750-1910. In A. Brändström and L.-G. Tedebrand (Eds), Society, health and population during the demographic transition (pp. 237-72). Umeå universitet.

Sköld, P. (2001). Kunskap och kontroll. Den svenska befolkningsstatistikens historia. Umeå: Almqvist & Wiksell International.

Statistiska Centralbyrån (Statistics Sweden) (1969). Historisk statistik för Sverige. Del 1. Befolkning. Andra Upplagan. Stockholm: Statistiska Centralbyrån (Statistics Sweden)

Sundin, J. (1995). Culture, Class and Infant Mortality During the Swedish Mortality Transition, c. 1750-1850. Social Science History, 19(1).

Sundin, J. (1996). Child Mortality and Causes of Death in a Swedish City, 1750-1860. Historical Methods, 29(3), 93-106.

Sundin, J. and Tedebrand, L.-G. (1981). Mortality and morbidity in Swedish iron foundries 1750-1875. In A. Brändström and J. Sundin (Eds), Tradition and Transition. Studies in microdemography and social change (pp. 105-159). Umeå: Umeå universitet.

Umeå University (n/d). Parish tables. Tabellverket, The Demographic Database (DDB). Umeå: Umeå University

Willner, S. (1999). Det svaga könet? Kön och vuxendödlighet i 1800-talets Sverige. Linköping studies in arts and science, 203. Linköping: Linköpings universitet.

Annexes

Figure A1 - Sex distribution: percentage of females in Sund, Ekeby and Landeryd, 1750-1850

Figure A1 - Sex distribution: percentage of females in Sund, Ekeby and Landeryd, 1750-1850

Figure A2 - Crude birth rate in Sund, Ekeby and Landeryd, 1750-1849

Figure A2 - Crude birth rate in Sund, Ekeby and Landeryd, 1750-1849

Figure A3 - Infant mortality rate in three parishes vs city and countryside in Sweden, 1811-60

Figure A3 - Infant mortality rate in three parishes vs city and countryside in Sweden, 1811-60

Figure A4 - Percentage of illegitimate children (born outside marriage), 1750-1859

Figure A4 - Percentage of illegitimate children (born outside marriage), 1750-1859

Figure A5 - Stillbirths as a percentage of live births in Sund, Ekeby and Landeryd, 1750-1859

Figure A5 - Stillbirths as a percentage of live births in Sund, Ekeby and Landeryd, 1750-1859

Figure A6 - Reported causes of death among infants, 1802-20

Figure A6 - Reported causes of death among infants, 1802-20

Figure A7 - Symptoms of infections among infants, 1802-20

Figure A7 - Symptoms of infections among infants, 1802-20

Figure A8 - Reported causes of death among infants, 1821-30

Figure A8 - Reported causes of death among infants, 1821-30

Figure A9 - Symptoms of infections among infants, 1821-30

Figure A9 - Symptoms of infections among infants, 1821-30

Figure A10 - Reported causes of death among children 1-9 years old, 1774-1801

Figure A10 - Reported causes of death among children 1-9 years old, 1774-1801

Figure A11 - Symptoms of infections among children 1-9 years old, 1774-1801

Figure A11 - Symptoms of infections among children 1-9 years old, 1774-1801

Figure A12 - Reported causes of death among children 1-9 years old, 1802-20

Figure A12 - Reported causes of death among children 1-9 years old, 1802-20

Figure A13 - Symptoms of infections among children 1-9 years old, 1802-20

Figure A13 - Symptoms of infections among children 1-9 years old, 1802-20

Figure A14 - Reported causes of death among children 1-9 years old, 1821-30

Figure A14 - Reported causes of death among children 1-9 years old, 1821-30

Figure A15 - Symptoms of infections among children 1-9 years old, 1821-30

Figure A15 - Symptoms of infections among children 1-9 years old, 1821-30

Figure A16 - Percentage of 1-9-year-old children vaccinated against smallpox in Sund and Ekeby, 1804-59

Figure A16 - Percentage of 1-9-year-old children vaccinated against smallpox in Sund and Ekeby, 1804-59

Figure A17 - Reported causes of death among teenagers 10-19 years old, 1774-1801

Figure A17 - Reported causes of death among teenagers 10-19 years old, 1774-1801

Figure A18 - Symptoms of infections among teenagers 10-19 years old, 1774-1801

Figure A18 - Symptoms of infections among teenagers 10-19 years old, 1774-1801

Figure A19 - Reported causes of death among teenagers 10-24 years old, 1802-20

Figure A19 - Reported causes of death among teenagers 10-24 years old, 1802-20

Figure A20 - Symptoms of infections among teenagers 10-24 years old, 1802-20

Figure A20 - Symptoms of infections among teenagers 10-24 years old, 1802-20

Figure A21 - Reported causes of death among teenagers 10-24 years old, 1821-30

Figure A21 - Reported causes of death among teenagers 10-24 years old, 1821-30

Figure A22 - Symptoms of infections among teenagers 10-24 years old, 1821-30

Figure A22 - Symptoms of infections among teenagers 10-24 years old, 1821-30

Figure A23 - Reported causes of death among adults 20-39 years old, 1774-1801

Figure A23 - Reported causes of death among adults 20-39 years old, 1774-1801

Figure A24 - Symptoms of infections among adults 20-39 years old, 1774-1801

Figure A24 - Symptoms of infections among adults 20-39 years old, 1774-1801

Figure A25 - Reported causes of death among adults 25-49 years old, 1802-20

Figure A25 - Reported causes of death among adults 25-49 years old, 1802-20

Figure A26 - Symptoms of infections among adults 25-49 years old, 1802-20

Figure A26 - Symptoms of infections among adults 25-49 years old, 1802-20

Figure A27 - Reported causes of death among adults 25-49 years old, 1821-30

Figure A27 - Reported causes of death among adults 25-49 years old, 1821-30

Figure A28 - Symptoms of infections among adults 25-49 years old, 1821-30

Figure A28 - Symptoms of infections among adults 25-49 years old, 1821-30

Figure A29 - Reported causes of death among adults 40-59 years old, 1774-1801

Figure A29 - Reported causes of death among adults 40-59 years old, 1774-1801

Figure A30 - Symptoms of infections among adults 40-59 years old, 1774-1801

Figure A30 - Symptoms of infections among adults 40-59 years old, 1774-1801

Figure A31 - Percentage of females in total population in the year 1800 by 10-year age cohorts

Figure A31 - Percentage of females in total population in the year 1800 by 10-year age cohorts

Notes

1 All figures are based on the parish tables delivered to the Tabellverket, covering the period 1750-1859 (Umeå University, n/d). For Swedish averages, the source is Statistiska Centralbyrån (Statistics Sweden) (1969).

2 These tables were also computed and delivered by the local clergy in 1749-1855, but for these three parishes they are too hard to interpret consistently for comparisons before 1775.

3 Figures with numbers preceded by ‘A’ may be found in the Appendix.

4 On regional differences and ways to carry out a deep analysis of infant mortality in eighteenth and nineteenth century Sweden, see for instance: Sundin and Tedebrand (1981); Sundin (1995); Sundin (1996); Edvinsson, Brändström and Rogers (2008); and Edvinsson, Rogers and Brändström (2001).

5 A pioneer in analysing these data is Gunnar Fridlizius, e.g. Fridlizius, 1988. See also for instance Edvinsson and Nilsson, 2000; Willner, 1999.

Table des illustrations

Titre Figure 1 - Population size in Sund, Ekeby and Landeryd, 1750-18541
URL http://books.openedition.org/cidehus/docannexe/image/8363/img-1.png
Fichier image/png, 13k
Titre Figure 2 - Occupations of male heads of households in Sund, Ekeby and Landeryd, 1805-1855
URL http://books.openedition.org/cidehus/docannexe/image/8363/img-2.png
Fichier image/png, 26k
Titre Figure 3 - Infant mortality rate in Sund, Ekeby, Landeryd and Sweden, 1750-1859
URL http://books.openedition.org/cidehus/docannexe/image/8363/img-3.png
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Titre Figure 4 - Reported causes of death among infants, 1774-1801
URL http://books.openedition.org/cidehus/docannexe/image/8363/img-4.png
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Titre Figure 5 - Symptoms of infections among infants, 1774-1801
URL http://books.openedition.org/cidehus/docannexe/image/8363/img-5.png
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Titre Figure 6 - Mortality among boys 1-9 years old, 1750-1854
URL http://books.openedition.org/cidehus/docannexe/image/8363/img-6.png
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Titre Figure 7 - Mortality among girls 1-9 years old, 1750-1854
URL http://books.openedition.org/cidehus/docannexe/image/8363/img-7.png
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Titre Figure 8 - Mortality among boys 10-19 years old, 1750-1854
URL http://books.openedition.org/cidehus/docannexe/image/8363/img-8.png
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Titre Figure 9 - Mortality among girls 10-19 years old, 1750-1854
URL http://books.openedition.org/cidehus/docannexe/image/8363/img-9.png
Fichier image/png, 25k
Titre Figure 10 - Mortality among adult men 20-39 years old, 1750-1854
URL http://books.openedition.org/cidehus/docannexe/image/8363/img-10.png
Fichier image/png, 26k
Titre Figure 11 - Mortality among adult women 20-39 years old, 1750-1854
URL http://books.openedition.org/cidehus/docannexe/image/8363/img-11.png
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Titre Figure 12 - Mortality among men 40-59 years old, 1750-1854
URL http://books.openedition.org/cidehus/docannexe/image/8363/img-12.png
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Titre Figure 13 - Mortality among women 40-59 years old, 1750-1854
URL http://books.openedition.org/cidehus/docannexe/image/8363/img-13.png
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Titre Figure 14 - Rates of survival to 0-60 years of age for males and females born in 1790-99
URL http://books.openedition.org/cidehus/docannexe/image/8363/img-14.png
Fichier image/png, 103k
Titre Figure 15 - Rates of survival to 20-60 years of age for males and females aged 20 in 1810-19
URL http://books.openedition.org/cidehus/docannexe/image/8363/img-15.png
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Titre Figure A1 - Sex distribution: percentage of females in Sund, Ekeby and Landeryd, 1750-1850
URL http://books.openedition.org/cidehus/docannexe/image/8363/img-16.png
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Titre Figure A2 - Crude birth rate in Sund, Ekeby and Landeryd, 1750-1849
URL http://books.openedition.org/cidehus/docannexe/image/8363/img-17.png
Fichier image/png, 22k
Titre Figure A3 - Infant mortality rate in three parishes vs city and countryside in Sweden, 1811-60
URL http://books.openedition.org/cidehus/docannexe/image/8363/img-18.png
Fichier image/png, 18k
Titre Figure A4 - Percentage of illegitimate children (born outside marriage), 1750-1859
URL http://books.openedition.org/cidehus/docannexe/image/8363/img-19.png
Fichier image/png, 20k
Titre Figure A5 - Stillbirths as a percentage of live births in Sund, Ekeby and Landeryd, 1750-1859
URL http://books.openedition.org/cidehus/docannexe/image/8363/img-20.png
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Titre Figure A6 - Reported causes of death among infants, 1802-20
URL http://books.openedition.org/cidehus/docannexe/image/8363/img-21.png
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Titre Figure A7 - Symptoms of infections among infants, 1802-20
URL http://books.openedition.org/cidehus/docannexe/image/8363/img-22.png
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Titre Figure A8 - Reported causes of death among infants, 1821-30
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Titre Figure A9 - Symptoms of infections among infants, 1821-30
URL http://books.openedition.org/cidehus/docannexe/image/8363/img-24.png
Fichier image/png, 15k
Titre Figure A10 - Reported causes of death among children 1-9 years old, 1774-1801
URL http://books.openedition.org/cidehus/docannexe/image/8363/img-25.png
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Titre Figure A11 - Symptoms of infections among children 1-9 years old, 1774-1801
URL http://books.openedition.org/cidehus/docannexe/image/8363/img-26.png
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Titre Figure A12 - Reported causes of death among children 1-9 years old, 1802-20
URL http://books.openedition.org/cidehus/docannexe/image/8363/img-27.png
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Titre Figure A13 - Symptoms of infections among children 1-9 years old, 1802-20
URL http://books.openedition.org/cidehus/docannexe/image/8363/img-28.png
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Titre Figure A14 - Reported causes of death among children 1-9 years old, 1821-30
URL http://books.openedition.org/cidehus/docannexe/image/8363/img-29.png
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Titre Figure A15 - Symptoms of infections among children 1-9 years old, 1821-30
URL http://books.openedition.org/cidehus/docannexe/image/8363/img-30.png
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Titre Figure A16 - Percentage of 1-9-year-old children vaccinated against smallpox in Sund and Ekeby, 1804-59
URL http://books.openedition.org/cidehus/docannexe/image/8363/img-31.png
Fichier image/png, 23k
Titre Figure A17 - Reported causes of death among teenagers 10-19 years old, 1774-1801
URL http://books.openedition.org/cidehus/docannexe/image/8363/img-32.png
Fichier image/png, 15k
Titre Figure A18 - Symptoms of infections among teenagers 10-19 years old, 1774-1801
URL http://books.openedition.org/cidehus/docannexe/image/8363/img-33.png
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Titre Figure A19 - Reported causes of death among teenagers 10-24 years old, 1802-20
URL http://books.openedition.org/cidehus/docannexe/image/8363/img-34.png
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Titre Figure A20 - Symptoms of infections among teenagers 10-24 years old, 1802-20
URL http://books.openedition.org/cidehus/docannexe/image/8363/img-35.png
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Titre Figure A21 - Reported causes of death among teenagers 10-24 years old, 1821-30
URL http://books.openedition.org/cidehus/docannexe/image/8363/img-36.png
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Titre Figure A22 - Symptoms of infections among teenagers 10-24 years old, 1821-30
URL http://books.openedition.org/cidehus/docannexe/image/8363/img-37.png
Fichier image/png, 18k
Titre Figure A23 - Reported causes of death among adults 20-39 years old, 1774-1801
URL http://books.openedition.org/cidehus/docannexe/image/8363/img-38.png
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Titre Figure A24 - Symptoms of infections among adults 20-39 years old, 1774-1801
URL http://books.openedition.org/cidehus/docannexe/image/8363/img-39.png
Fichier image/png, 19k
Titre Figure A25 - Reported causes of death among adults 25-49 years old, 1802-20
URL http://books.openedition.org/cidehus/docannexe/image/8363/img-40.png
Fichier image/png, 15k
Titre Figure A26 - Symptoms of infections among adults 25-49 years old, 1802-20
URL http://books.openedition.org/cidehus/docannexe/image/8363/img-41.png
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Titre Figure A27 - Reported causes of death among adults 25-49 years old, 1821-30
URL http://books.openedition.org/cidehus/docannexe/image/8363/img-42.png
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Titre Figure A28 - Symptoms of infections among adults 25-49 years old, 1821-30
URL http://books.openedition.org/cidehus/docannexe/image/8363/img-43.png
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Titre Figure A29 - Reported causes of death among adults 40-59 years old, 1774-1801
URL http://books.openedition.org/cidehus/docannexe/image/8363/img-44.png
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Titre Figure A30 - Symptoms of infections among adults 40-59 years old, 1774-1801
URL http://books.openedition.org/cidehus/docannexe/image/8363/img-45.png
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Titre Figure A31 - Percentage of females in total population in the year 1800 by 10-year age cohorts
URL http://books.openedition.org/cidehus/docannexe/image/8363/img-46.png
Fichier image/png, 18k

Auteur

Linköping University

Jan.sundin@liu.se

© Publicações do Cidehus, 2019

Conditions d’utilisation : http://www.openedition.org/6540