Monday, June 18, 2012

A Butcher, A Baker, A Candlestick Maker...

When it comes to occupations, there are many different ones that individuals have had over time. The census records show such a variety of occupations that often one may have to look it up to determine just what that occupation entailed as it was to support their families. Yet there are some occupations that are still the same today as they have always been throughout time.

In the above picture an individual bakes bread in a brick oven which is done today in various places throughout the world. In researching my Marotte lines, my grandfather, Alphonse Marotte, worked for the New England Bakery in Pawtucket, Rhode Island. In my immediate family, my son, Phillip works as a cook at the Waterman Grille in Providence, Rhode Island and has worked at other restaurants over the years.
His brother is also a fantastic cook and on their paternal side there are even more bakers and cooks. It is easy to see how some talents just continue on through the generations.

Flickr by Mr. Robert Wade

Not to be outdone, my furthest back ancestor, Rene Brisson was a butcher, however, again perusing the census records back finds more butchers and so this skill is another that has been handed down to the current generations as they learn to cook and gain their culinary skills which includes knowing how to chop, puree, dice, slice, etc. to get all the ingredients just right!

Agricultural laborers and farmers are another of the more common occupations found but within those parameters are many more occupations that includes thresher, swainer, granger and ackerman, etc. These different terms add so much color and imagination to our search as we attempt to visualize what they might be and then adding a picture of our ancestor doing that particular job, ancestral research often provides an unexpected historical perspective not found in history books.

Often when there are individuals with the same family names in the same locations, an occupation can be the one thing that tells them apart. Just in this little portion of an 1881 UK Census we find seven different occupations or professions for these individuals.

As one does research, it is a good thing to become familiar with the trades, occupations and professions of those in your ancestral lines. There are many great sites to help with understanding the old terminologies by different countries as I've written about here.

Regardless of what occupation has been passed down through the generations, one thing is certain, everyone one tried their best to support their families and while some focused on a trade others did whatever work was available at the time.


Comments and Suggestions are always welcomed!

Building Bridges for All Generations!

Claire (*)
Timeless Genealogies
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