DEATHS IN ENGLAND AND WALES IN 1846

BY AGE GROUP, AND AS A PERCENTAGE OF TOTAL DEATHS

From Registrar General's 9th Annual Report)

 

Total Births in 1846 572,625
Total Deaths in 1846 390,315
Population in 1841 15.9 million
Death rate 1 in 41

 

Age Group Number % of total
Under 1 93,644 24
Age 1-5 66,976 17
Age 5-10 16,190 4.1
Age 10-15 9,583 2.5
15-20 12,817 3.3
20-30 29,737 7.6
30-40 25,009 6.4
40-50 23,561 6.0
50-60 23,991 6.1
60-70 31,041 8.0
70-80 34,231 8.8
80-90 19,845 5.1
90-100 3,221 0.83
>100 119 0.03
Unknown age 350 0.09
    100

The infant mortality rate is the deaths for those under the age of 1 as a percentage of births. In 1846 it was 16% for the whole of England and Wales.

With the census of 1841 we have, for the first time, reasonalby accurate information on how many people there were in each age group. In the 1841 census ages for adults were rounded down to the nearest multiple of 5. Below I have used the data from the 1841 census to show the death rate in each age group using as an example the North West Division, which comprised the counties of Lancashire and Cheshire.

Table 2: Annual Mortality as Percentage of Living in the North West Division of England

Average Death Rates for 1838 to 1844 based on population in 1841.

Data abstracted from Annual Reports of Registrar General and Census of 1841

 

Age Group Cheshire Cheshire Lancashire Lancashire
  Male Female Male Female
0 to 1 22.3% 17.5% 26.8% 20.7%
1 to 2 7 6.6 10.8 10.5
2 to 3 3.6 3.4 5.3 5.1
3 to 4 2.6 2.6 3.7 3.6
4 to 5 1.9 1.9 2.6 2.6
5 to 10 1 1 1.2 1.1
10 to 15 0.62 0.67 0.60 0.60
15 to 25 0.94 1.01 0.93 0.94
25 to 35 0.98 1.21 1.05 1.15
35 to 45 1.22 1.39 1.46 1.55
45 to 55 1.80 1.79 2.20 1.99
55 to 65 3.39 3.18 3.78 3.44
65 to 75 7.27 6.76 8.09 7.26
75 to 85 15.38 14.97 16.52 14.89
85 to 95 34.09 25.14 30.14 29.77
95 and over 40 -- 39.4 32.9
All ages 2.375 2.263 2.792 2.561
Living to deaths 42.1 to 1 44.2 to 1 35.8 to 1 39.0 to 1

 

Dorset & Devon ratios for living to deaths were 51.1 (males) and 53.2 (female). Note that the death rate declined steadily after the age of 1 and was lowest for the group aged 10 to 15 where only 0.6% died per annum. The death rate then remained under 2% per annum until the age of 55 and rose steeply thereafter. It is of interest to family historians to know what proportion of children reached the age of marriage. Using information from table 2 I have worked out the losses each year to a cohort of 100 children if these death rates continued for 20 years for the worst of the four cases, males in Lancashire.

Table 3: Twenty year survival for Lancashire male children

Year 1 loss is 26.8% to give 73.2
Year 2 loss is a further 10.8% to give 65.3
Year 3 loss is a further 5.3% to give 61.8
Year 4 loss is a further 3.7% to give 59.5
Year 5 loss is a further 2.6% to give 58
Year 5 to year 10 loss is 5 years at 1.2% per annum or a further 6% to give 54.5
Year 10 to 15 loss is 5 years at 0.5% per annum or a further 2.5% to give 53.1
Year 15 to 20 loss is 5 years at 0.93% per annum or a further 4.65% to give 50.7.

Thus in Lancashire in the early 19th century only about half of all male children reached the usual age of marriage. For Manchester, which had one of the worst infant mortality rates, separate calculations show that only 41.3% of males reached the age of 20. The figures for rural England are much better. Infant mortality rates in the South West Division were only 10 to 12% in contrast to the 25% or more in the towns of South Lancashire.  

 

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