Workhouses

Institutions overseeing the confinement and labor of paupers, vagrants, and the disabled or elderly poor from the 17th through 19th century in Europe and America, especially those established under the various Poor Laws of England. These institutions eventually degenerated into dumping places for paupers, criminals, infirm, elderly, and the mentally ill.

Quick Facts

Go Historic ID
34347
Names
workhouses
workhouse
work houses
casa de trabajo Spanish

More Definitions

Institutions overseeing the confinement and labor of paupers, vagrants, and the disabled or elderly poor from the 17th through 19th century in Europe and America, especially those established under the various Poor Laws of England. These institutions eventually degenerated into dumping places for paupers, criminals, infirm, elderly, and the mentally ill. For similar institutions intended to provide punishment and reformation of the criminal, use "houses of correction (institutions)." For institutions providing charitable care for the poor, use "almshouses (institutions)."

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Bibliography

  1. 1.  The Getty Art & Architecture Thesaurus, 300343481. The J. Paul Getty Trust.