Poverty's Policeman


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History Today
Vol. 64, no. 2 (February 2014), p. 32-39


The desire to enforce industry and thrift and to distinguish between the deserving and undeserving poor during times of austerity is nothing new, says David Filtness. The late 18th-century magistrate and founder of the Thames Police, Patrick Colquhoun, was both radical and draconian in his approach to crime and Poor law reform