„[F]amine exerted pressure to such an extent”. Reflections on the Crisis of 1863–1864 Cover Image

„[A]z ínség olly rém alakban gyakorlá hatását”. Válságreflexiók 1863–1864-ről
„[F]amine exerted pressure to such an extent”. Reflections on the Crisis of 1863–1864

Author(s): Krisztina Boa
Subject(s): History
Published by: KORALL Társadalomtörténeti Egyesület

Summary/Abstract: Consistently warm weather from the year 1861 onwards caused drought and the ensuing famine of 1863–64, which affected at least 47 administrative regions in Hungary to a varying degree. The study explores this sustenance crisis through the eyes of a rather heterogeneous group, who either lived through these hard times or were aware of it through various channels. The multi-genre sources, such as diaries, daily chronicles, reminiscences, memoirs and letters, provide a glimpse into the geographical extent of the crisis. In addition, the sources also attest to a range of phenomena associated with the economic crisis, such as burnt-out crops, bad harvests, shortage of food and fodder, threat of famine and the loss of farm animals. The shared experience of weathering the crisis together amplified the awareness of contemporaries: many have realised the significance of money shortage and recorded the dramatic changes in the price of crops and animals. The study also discusses society’s responses to the economic crisis, such as the consumption of famine food, migration and criminal activity directly triggered by food shortage. Boa gives examples for local crisis management effortsby examining the measures taken by famine boards in Miskolc and Békéscsaba, where she focuses on the role of a Lutheran pastor, Lajos Haán, and the uncertainty surrounding his board membership. The study concludes with a description of various unique forms of crisis management, such as charity events and other initiatives, as well as the personal motivation of private individuals’ that made these possible.

  • Issue Year: 2013
  • Issue No: 54
  • Page Range: 28-42
  • Page Count: 15
  • Language: Hungarian