Mr John Kirby (1727-1804) – A Debtor Turned Gaoler and the Rise of Professional Prison Keeping

In the late spring of 1761, John Kirby tasted freedom for the first time in seven years. He packed his remaining possessions and descended the winding stairs outside his quarters which he shared with up to three other men. He emerged into the London sunshine as he crossed the prison yard, being briefly plunged into … Continue reading Mr John Kirby (1727-1804) – A Debtor Turned Gaoler and the Rise of Professional Prison Keeping

Renting in Eighteenth-Century London

Few issues face the modern Londoner with more regularity than the trials, tribulations, and pitfalls of the renting market. The majority of the city’s population lease their accommodation, pay nearly twice the rate of those outside the capital, and spend an average of a third to half of their income on rent. For a proportion … Continue reading Renting in Eighteenth-Century London