Old Occupations

Here is a list of old occupations compiled by a Dan Burrows who put these 130 items together from many sources.
Some of the words have evolved to mean other things in modern times.

Hope they are of help to you, especially when reading census records or wills..

Accomptant-- Accountant

Almoner-- Giver of charity to the needy

Amanuensis-- Secretary or stenographer

Artificer-- A soldier mechanic who does repairs

Bailie-- Bailiff

Baxter-- Baker

Bluestocking-- Female writer

Boniface-- Keeper of an inn

Brazier-- One who works with brass

Brewster-- Beer manufacturer

Brightsmith-- Metal Worker

Burgonmaster-- Mayor

Caulker-- One who filled up cracks (in ships or windows or seems to make them watertight by using tar or oakum-hem fiber produced by taking old ropes apart

Chaisemaker-- Carriage maker

Chandler-- Dealer or trader; one who makes or sells candles; retailer of groceries, ship supplier

Chiffonnier-- Wig maker

Clark-- Clerk

Clerk-- Clergyman, cleric

Clicker-- The servant of a salesman who stood at the door to invite customers; one who received the matter in the galley from the compositors and arranged it in due form ready for printing; one who makes eyelet holes in boots using a machine which clicked.

Cohen-- Priest

Collier-- Coal miner

Colporteur-- Peddler of books

Cooper-- One who makes or repairs vessels made of staves & hoops, such as casks, barrels, tubs, etc.

Cordwainer-- Shoemaker, originally any leather worker using leather from Cordova/Cordoba in Spain

Costermonger-- Peddler of fruits and vegetables

Crocker-- Potter

Crowner-- Coroner

Currier-- One who dresses the coat of a horse with a currycomb; one who tanned leather by incorporating oil or grease Docker-- Stevedore, dock worker who loads and unloads cargo

Dowser-- One who finds water using a rod or witching stick

Draper-- A dealer in dry goods

Drayman-- One who drives a long strong cart without fixed sides for carrying heavy loads

Dresser-- A surgeon's assistant in a hospital

Drover-- One who drives cattle, sheep, etc. to market; a dealer in cattle

Duffer-- Peddler Factor Agent-- commission merchant; one who acts or transacts business for another; Scottish steward or bailiff of an estate Farrier-- A blacksmith, one who shoes horses

Faulkner-- Falconer

Fell monger-- One who removes hair or wool from hides in preparation for leather making

Fletcher-- One who made bows and arrows

Fuller-- One who fulls cloth;one who shrinks and thickens woolen cloth by moistening, heating and pressing; one who cleans and finishes cloth

Gaoler-- A keeper of the goal, a jailer

Glazier-- Window glassman

Hacker-- Maker of hoes

Hatcheler-- One who combed out or carded flax

Haymonger-- Dealer in hay

Hayward-- Keeper of fences

Higgler-- Itinerant peddler

Hillier-- Roof tiler

Hind-- A farm laborer

Holster-- A groom who took care of horses, often at an inn

Hooker-- Reaper

Hooper-- One who made hoops for casks and barrels

Huckster-- Sells small wares

Husbandman-- A farmer who cultivated the land

Jagger-- Fish peddler

Journeyman-- One who had served his apprenticeship and mastered his craft, not bound to serve a master, but hired by the day

Joyner / Joiner-- A skilled carpente

r Keeler-- Bargeman

Kempster-- Wool comber

Lardner-- Keeper of the cupboard

Lavender-- Washer woman

Lederer-- Leather maker

Leech-- Physician

Longshoreman-- Stevedore

Lormer --Maker of horse gear

Malender-- Farmer

Maltster-- Brewer

Manciple-- A steward Mason-- Bricklayer Mintmaster-- One who issued local currency Monger-- Seller of goods (ale, fish)

Muleskinner-- Teamster

Neatherder-- Herds cows

Ordinary Keeper-- Innkeeper with fixed prices

Pattern Maker-- A maker of a clog shod with an iron ring. A clog was a wooden pole with a pattern cut into the end

Peregrinator-- Itinerant wanderer Peruker-- A wig maker Pettifogger-- A shyster lawyer

Pigman-- Crockery dealer

Plumber-- One who applied sheet lead for roofing and set lead frames for plain or stained glass windows.

Porter-- Door keeper

Puddler-- Wrought iron worker

Quarrier-- Quarry worker

Rigger-- Hoist tackle worker

Ripper-- Seller of fish

Roper-- Maker of rope or nets

Saddler-- One who makes, repairs or sells saddles or other furnishings for horses

Sawbones-- Physician

Sawyer-- One who saws; carpenter Schumacker-- Shoemaker

Scribler-- A minor or worthless author

Scrivener-- Professional or public copyist or writer; notary public

Scrutiner-- Election judge

Shrieve-- Sheriff Slater-- Roofer Slopseller-- Seller of ready-made clothes in a slop shop

Snobscat / Snob-- One who repaired shoes

Sorter-- Tailor Spinster-- A woman who spins or an unmarried woman Spurrer-- Maker of spurs

Squire-- Country gentleman; farm owner; justice of peace

Stuff gown-- Junior barrister

Stuff gownsman-- Junior barrister Supercargo-- Officer on merchant ship who is in charge of cargo and the commercial concerns of the ship.

Tanner-- One who tans (cures) animal hides into leather

Tapley-- One who puts the tap in an ale cask

Tasker-- Reaper

Teamster-- One who drives a team for hauling

Thatcher-- Roofer Tide waiter-- Customs inspector

Tinker-- Am itinerant tin pot and pan seller and repairman

Tipstaff-- Policeman Travers-- Toll bridge collection Tucker-- Cleaner of cloth goods Turner-- A person who turns wood on a lathe into spindles

Victualer-- A tavern keeper, or one who provides an army, navy or ship with food

Vulcan-- Blacksmith

Wagoner-- Teamster not for hire

Wainwright-- Wagon maker Waiter Customs officer or tide waiter-- one who waited on the tide to collect duty on goods brought in.

Waterman-- Boatman who plies for hire

Webster-- Operator of looms

Wharfinger-- Owner of a wharf

Wheelwright-- One who made or repaired wheels; wheeled carriages,etc.

Whitesmith Tinsmith-- worker of iron who finishes or polishes the work

Whitewing-- Street sweeper

Whitster-- Bleach of cloth

Wright-- Workman, especially a construction worker

Yeoman Farmer-- who owns his own land

Copyright © 2002 - present by Vicky Chambers

This page was last updated Wednesday, 07-Sep-2011 09:22:46 EDT