England in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries was no stranger to migrants and, inevitably, migrants were not always warmly received. They were often stigmatised for their perceived differences of language, religion and behaviour, and were blamed for a range of social ills including crime and low wages. In this article I examine print news reporting in six English port cities from c1850 to 1911. I focus on the ways in which crime reporting in particular characterised both offenders and victims, and the extent to which migrant origin was considered a relevant characteristic to report. It is argued that for the most part migrant origin was not widely mentioned in crime reports in regional newspapers, though there were periods when migrant origin was increasingly foregrounded and these coincided with times when migration to England was becoming increasingly politicised, especially before and immediately after the passing of the Aliens Act in 1905.
In most societies the ability to move easily from place to place is a taken-for-granted aspect of twenty-first century life, but much less is known about such mobility in the past with a tendency for accounts to focus on the exceptional rather than the routine. In this paper we use two personal diaries written in England in the mid-nineteenth century and early-twentieth centuries to explore the ways in which everyday mobility was accomplished in the past. Attention is focused on the ease with which people could move around, the variety of modes of transport used, the enjoyment that travel generated, and the difficulties that were encountered. It is concluded that frequent everyday mobility was commonplace and mostly unproblematic, and was as closely enmeshed with society and economy as is the case in the twenty-first century. Such mobility also facilitated residential migration by providing knowledge about potential locations.