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  1. #1

    Default Travel by horse or foot, time needed 1700s

    How does travel time and method used compare to bicycle travel?
    Often when researching ancestors in the 1600-1700s I find myself looking at distances between possible living areas.
    Am example say I have reliable records for someone who was baptised in Keele, Staffordshire 1688, I have his parents names from the baptism records. Then I attempt to find records of his parents marriage and/or baptism, searches have results for the correct names in places including Knutton, Bradwell, Tunstall, or places further away.
    I usually look at the distance to the various places and try to figure out how the people would have got to the other locations.
    Did they walk, did they ride, have a cart and horse, was there any form of public transportation? How did they move their possessions if they moved from one place to another?
    I can look at distances on Google maps or other websites, but today's roads didn't exist then, were they cart tracks, walking tracks that might have been more direct than today's roads.
    My next step is to use walking as means of travel, then bicycle as means of travel and look at time required, if you could travel from one place to another in a day or less, it seems possible that the ancestors could have come from another village or town.
    If it took several days it seems like moving would have to have some significant benefits to make traveling worth it.
    Does anyone have any idea whether comparing horse travel time to bicycle travel time is a reasonable comparison.

  2. #2
    Knowledgeable and helpful stepives's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Ireland, but born Buckinghamshire.


    Walking, riding a horse....all you need to look for is todays average speed.
    There were also more roads and trackways than you think there were. There are a network of Roman roads across the whole country, plus ancient trackways, that still the Icknield way, which was said to stretch from Norfolk to Wiltshire,(if I remember correctly). Mileage markers to major towns were in exsistance, and some originals still are.

    All you need is an imagination, but who knows how they moved their belongings. By Donkey ro horse, with or, without a cart. Or they may have paid someone to move them. It's no different today really. Just the means of carriage.

    Average human walking pace is 3 miles an hour roughly, a horse is around 4 miles per hour. As for depends on the fitness of the rider, and how fast they can go.

    Too many bones, too much sorrow, but until I am dead, there's always tomorrow.

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