How Jobs Have Changed | Victorian History


Millions of workers today earn their living in occupations that didn’t exist at the beginning of the 20th century. On the converse, many made livings in occupations then that have fallen by the wayside.

Jobs that have faded since Victorian times:

  • Railroad employees (2,076,000 in 1920, 231,000 today)
  • Carriage, harness makers (109,000 in 1900)
  • Telegraph operators (75,000 in 1920, 8,000 today)
  • Boilermakers (74,000 in 1920)
  • Cobblers (102,000 in 1900, 25,000 today)
  • Blacksmiths (238,000 in 1910)
  • Watchmakers (101,000 in 1920)
  • Farm workers (11.5 million in 1910, 851,000 today)

New jobs that have been created since Victorian times:

  • Airline pilots & mechanics (0 in 1900, 232,000 today)
  • Medical technicians (0 in 1900, 1.38 million today)
  • Engineers (38,000 in 1900, 1.85 million today)
  • Auto mechanics (0 in 1900, 864,000 today)
  • Truck, bus, taxi drivers (0 in 1900, 3.33 million today)
  • Professional athletes (less than 5,000 in 1920, 77,00o today)
  • Electricians (51,000 in 1900, 771,000 today)
  • Optometrists (less than 5,000 in 1910, 62,000 today)

–Data source: U.S. Bureau of the Census

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