Final Proposals

Final Research Proposal: England’s Immigrants 1330-1550

The database England’s Immigrants 1330-1550 lists over 64,000 names of immigrants, including his or her origin, occupation and gender of those immigrating to England during this time period. The data was collected from published and unpublished records, such as taxation assessments, letters of denization and protection, among others. The data covers a wide geographic area which is mostly contained to Europe, such as Scotland, Ireland and the Netherlands and includes the location where the immigrant settled within England. The data set has a lot of columns, many of which are dedicated to where the entry was found, such as in a letter of protection or a tax assessment and in what archive the document was found. From this data set one can see where the immigrants left and where they relocated, however, what cannot be discerned are the factors as to why he or she left, therefore, my goal with this project is to discover and map the reasons as to why so many immigrated during this period.

            I anticipate that when cleaning the data, I will have to eliminate entries where country of origin is not included. I will also have to streamline the spelling of certain countries to make sure each country is identified correctly. At this time, I also think I should eliminate some columns in the data set, most specifically those which tell the archival information, such as what document the information was collected from, where the archive is located and document number. I also plan to combine the original and the standard columns together, as both list similar information and if they are combined, it will give a more complete column with fewer blank cells.

So far I have found a couple articles on the topic including:

Bennett, Judith M. “Women (and Men) on the Move: Scots in the English North c. 1440.” Journal of British Studies 57, no. 1 (January 2018): 1.

Lambert, Bart, and Milan Pajie. “Immigration and the Common Profit: Native Cloth Workers, Flemish Exiles, and Royal Policy in Fourteenth-Century London.” Journal of British Studies 55 (4) 2016: 633.

Slavin, Philip. “Review of Periodical Literature Published in 2016: 1100-1500.” Economic History Review 71, no. 1 (February 2018): 294–301.

            With this project, my goal is to use the data set to map the origin of England’s immigrants and where they settled. I plan to research the reasons, such as economic, political and social reasons as to why people were leaving their countries. I also plan to explore the impact, if any, these immigrants had on England and the places they settled. I also want to explore themes such as gender and occupation to see if there is any clear impact of these features on settlement or reasons for immigrating. To demonstrate this, I plan to use an interactive map to show where people are leaving and where they ultimately settle. With this map I also want to make it so when the country of origin is clicked on, the reasons as to why people were leaving are shown and when the area of settlement is clicked on, the impact of the immigrants is revealed. I also would like to use a network, but as of right now am unsure as to how to incorporate it. I am exploring the idea of networking relationships between country of origin, for example, if many immigrants from Ireland densely settled in one area or were spread out across England.

Proposed Schedule:

April 5: data cleaning complete

April 10: research complete

April 30: rough draft of interactive elements

May 16: complete

One Comment

  • Maeve Kane

    I said this in class but I’ll repeat it often: do not remove rows from dataset. You can disregard them using filters if you’re asking a question about origin and there’s no origin present for some rows, but you should leave those rows in your data in case you need them for other questions. Just be clear about what you’re filtering when.

    Your research questions are asking very traditional historian questions–which is not a bad thing, but is beyond the scope of this class. Think more about what your data can tell you, rather than what you will have to research to understand your data. Right now you’re proposing a very traditional style research paper, but your time needs to be spent on the visualizations you’re proposing, and analyzing what those mean rather than vice versa.

    You’ll also need to spend some time in your data cleaning translating some of the place names into modern places, or choosing which modern place name to use (eg, Flanders is coded in your data as Belgium and the Netherlands, so you’ll need to choose which you’re using.) Throw your data as it is now into Tableau and see what it doesn’t recognize to help guide your data cleaning.