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Captain Tom was a toddler, Beatrix Potter a 'farmer' and Sir Ar


  • The lives of every man, woman and child living in England and Wales in 1921 have been revealed, including notable figures such as Captain Sir Tom Moore, Beatrix Potter and Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, offering an unprecedented snapshot of life across the two nations and a population of 38 million people.

    Fundraising hero Cpt Tom was no more than one years old at the time, his entry appearing fourth beneath his four-year-old sister Freda, mother Isabella, 34, who listed 'household duties' as her job, and father Wilfred, 36, listed as a 'building contractor'.

    Beatrix Potter, aged 54 at the time, gave her occupation as 'farmer' due to her passion for sheep breeding and conservation at her home in the Lake District.

    Meanwhile, future Prime Minister Winston Churchill was visiting General Spears with his wife Clementine while serving as Secretary of State for the Colonies at the age of 47 and 40-year-old Scottish scientist Alexander Fleming was working on bacteria at St Mary's Hospital in London - the same hospital where he would discover penicillin seven years later.

    In an eerie echo of 2021, Britain in 1921 was recovering from the Spanish flu pandemic, battling a coal miners' strike, and enduring temperatures of more than 90F.

    The handwritten pages of the census, contained in more than 30,000 volumes, shed light on the private lives of 38 million people living in England and Wales at the time, from Windsor Castle and Chequers to cramped family homes of the working class.

    The new data shines a light on the grim reality of post-First World War Britain, amid crippling unemployment and social unrest, a changing jobs market, and a shortage of suitable housing leaving whole families packed into one-bedroom properties.

    People urged the Government to stop talking and start doing and condemned the census as a waste of taxpayers' money at times of 'such unemployment'.

    Historian and broadcaster professor David Olusoga said: 'I think it shows a snapshot of a country in absolute trauma, a country in the midst of trying to recover from what was the biggest rupture in its history.

    url: http://archibullprize.com.au/industry-snapshots/cotton.html