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Fattigvården i Gustavsberg 1869-1924
Gotland University, School of the Humanities and Social Science.
2011 (Swedish)Independent thesis Advanced level (degree of Master (One Year)), 10 credits / 15 HE creditsStudent thesis
Abstract [en]

With the help of large amount of archive material I have examined how Gustavsberg in Värmdö were affected by the great labor migration in Gustavsberg porcelain factory during the period 1869-1924. I have chosen to investigate how the municipality dealt with the poverty relief issue out of the labour immigration perspective. To my surprise I found out that Värmdö was not responsible for Gustavsberg in the poverty issue. The workers belonged to the factory, which had a relatively well-developed system of poverty relief in place. This is not to say that the workers received any support from the factory to any great extent. The general causes for poverty were lack of housing, unemployment, disease and what we today refer as old age. In regards to housing, it was not a problem, because the workers lived rent-free in the factory apartments. In case of unemployment the factory often arranged other chores for the employees until the situation changed for the better again. The factory had access to its own hospital with a doctor who came from Stockholm. For financial support there were Help Fund, Health and Funeral Fund and Savings Fund in workers disposal. These funds were based on the deposits of the workers’ wages and factory owners' donations or grants. The relationship between the factory workers and the factory would have been quite complex due to the workers strong dependence to their employer. During the time span of my research the factory owner Wilhelm Odelberg created a patriarchal society within the factory with his style of leadership. This meant that he was involved in every aspect of his workers lives, from factory, school, health care and church to such things as the factory store, where the employees were only able to only buy on credit.

This made it likely very difficult for the workers to ask for any support or other type of poverty relief. I have not found any evidence that the great labor migration to the factory would have affected the poverty relief in any significant way. There are other factors that have affected the poverty relief like the poverty relief regulation from 1871 and the political discussions around social security as a result of the rise of the industrialism. For the individual worker the changes in economy affected the level of poverty relief. During the good times the more liberal poverty politics favored those in need of support.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2011. , 47 p.
National Category
URN: urn:nbn:se:hgo:diva-1106OAI: diva2:441384
Subject / course
Humanities, Theology
Available from: 2011-09-16 Created: 2011-09-15 Last updated: 2013-07-01Bibliographically approved

Open Access in DiVA

fulltext(933 kB)