Home > Publications . Search All . Browse All . Country . Browse PSC Pubs . PSC Report Series

PSC In The News

RSS Feed icon

Work by Geronimus cited in account of Serena Williams' maternal health complications

Alexander and Massey compare outcomes for children whose parents did and did not take part in Great Migration

Geronimus on pushing past early dismissal of her weathering hypothesis

More News

Highlights

AA named 2018 Best Place to Live in America (out of 100 cities)

Remembering Jim Morgan, founding member of ISR and creator of the PSID

1/17/18: ISR screening and discussion of documentary "Class Divide" at Michigan Theater

Bailey et al. find higher income among children whose parents had access to federal family planning programs in the 1960s and 70s

More Highlights

Next Brown Bag

Mon, Jan 22, 2018, noon: Narayan Sastry

Deirdre Bloome photo

Tenancy, Marriage, and the Boll Weevil Infestation, 1892-1930

Publication Abstract

Bloome, Deirdre, James Feigenbaum, and Christopher Muller. 2017. "Tenancy, Marriage, and the Boll Weevil Infestation, 1892-1930." Demography, 54(3): 1029-1049.

In the early twentieth century, the cotton-growing regions of the U.S. South were dominated by families of tenant farmers. Tenant farming created opportunities and incentives for prospective tenants to marry at young ages. These opportunities and incentives especially affected African Americans, who had few alternatives to working as tenants. Using complete-count Census of Population data from 1900-1930 and Census of Agriculture data from 1889-1929, we find that increases in tenancy over time increased the prevalence of marriage among young African Americans. We then study how marriage was affected by one of the most notorious disruptions to southern agriculture at the turn of the century: the boll weevil infestation of 1892-1922. Using historical Department of Agriculture maps, we show that the boll weevil's arrival reduced the share of farms worked by tenants as well as the share of African Americans who married at young ages. When the boll weevil infestation altered African Americans' opportunities and incentives to marry, the share of African Americans who married young fell accordingly. Our results provide new evidence about the effect of economic and political institutions on demographic transformations.

DOI:10.1007/s13524-017-0581-3 (Full Text)

Browse | Search : All Pubs