Victorian Values - Health and Environment
Sanitary Conditions Report 1848 - Sheffield
Brief extracts from 'A Report on the Sanatory Condition of the Borough of Sheffield - 1848' are reproduced below and on the following two pages. A more detailed version of these extracts can be downloaded as a Word document, which includes a glossary of relevant words - see Downloads link below.
'The houses, especially those erected in the yards are ill constructed, badly lighted and ventilated: being built back to back, and generally of three storeys high, which in of itself is an impediment to the free access of light and air; and from the accumulation of filth and bad drainage in the lower part of the district the atmosphere is loaded with miasma to a degree which is highly pernicious (p33)
'The lane between Solly Street and new Edward Street demands special notice, receiving and retaining the drainage from houses and privvies in Solly Street, in several places to the depth of 2 feet, which soaks in and reduces the surface to a complete quagmire, making it a fertile source of the disease and death which prevail around. Sixteen cases of fever and one case of death have occurred in the adjoining houses within a few months (p34).
'A house in Wheeldon Street receives drainage from the adjoining
privy; the tenant's wife and others have suffered from
dysentery and other illnesses...One house in Broad Lane deposits its drainage close to the door of a dwelling house, producing similar effects upon the tenant's family. One son died lately of
'There are many (places) where those pestiferous cess pools, middens and privies are situated under dwelling-houses and sleeping rooms and their poisonous vapours can readily pass'.
Which word in the title of the report is spelled differently today? You might look for other words in this resource that were spelled differently in the past.