Emigration

After 1826, large numbers of people began to go abroad:

A postcard illustrating the British Empire
A postcard illustrating the British Empire

  • By 1885, there were 5 million British people living outside the UK.
  • Most went to America and Canada, seeking cheap farmland, or their fortune - especially in the 'gold rushes'.
  • Many colonists went to South Africa and New Zealand to work as farmers.
  • Criminals, Chartists and rebels were transported to Australia which was a penal colony, meaning that it was used as a large prison. The prisoners sent there were used to work on the land and made it fit to farm and live on.
  • 2,300 Welsh people emigrated to Argentina.
  • Large numbers of people went abroad, especially to India, to rule the Empire – rich people as administrators, poor people as soldiers.
  • Missionaries went to live all over the world, especially to Africa. They wanted to spread British religion, customs and ways of life.