I have never subscribed to this strange idea that a cataclysm happened sometime in the 19th century and all but the children survived. Or that these kids were put on trains and sent to repopulate a “founded” city.
In my head, there is a much more prosaic reason.
Back in 2020 I was researching Victorian Asylums……POPULATION INCREASES IN THE 1800’s was just one post.
I’ve had a very disturbing thought that has been dogging my recent foray into Victorian research.
Put together the following :
The Massive Popularity of “Newly” built Mental Asylums.
The Victorian Baby-Farming Scandals.
The HUGE population explosion.
The amount of orphans available for adoption.
How many families got rid of their unwanted daughters by sending them away to some “Nuthouse.”
The Strict Moral Codes placed on the women at this time.
The predilection for men to seek company other than his lawful wedded wife to assuage his baser needs.
I’ve yet to find absolute proof that Mental Asylums of the 19th century were just glorified (and free of charge) brothels, but…!!!
Now – that IS a disgusting thought.
P.S. And (apart from the baby part) this applies to Male Mental Asylums too :o(
I also researched “baby farmers” like Amelia Dyer and The Most Obvious Connection is Unwanted Pregnancies. Caused either by lusty girls or by randy men.
In the strictures of middle/upper class Victorian Society, the husband and the wife were quite often totally incompatible. The husband had his “Club” and the wife had her “tea parties.”
There were many a fallen woman available for sex. And sex (shock & awe) creates BABIES. Lots of unwanted babies!
Fact : Our current Queen consort is the descendent of a bastard child of a married King and his mistress.