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Historical Occupation Terminology

Manufacturer: Are manufacturers the same as the "proprietor" (or owner) of a manufacturing enterprise? What level of hands-on involvement do you think they might have? (varying levels?)

Distinguishing between those who are "working" and those who are "idly rich": NAPP considers titles such as "gentleman", "investments", "has income", "rentier" to be non-occupational titles, although we give them a separate status code to preserve the information contained in the string.

But what about:

  1. Speculator? (The U.S. census team considers this an occupation) (We have 125 instances of "speculator" in the 100% 1881 Canadian census database)
  2. Capitalist? (The U.S. census team considers this an occupation; in some cases, they may have employed someone to handle their investments for them. The Canadian Families Project classified capitalists in a similar way, among "Managers, Administrators, Unspecified Owners". The English census team states that English persons who would have been called capitalist are instead in England called "dealers", and suggests that the word "capitalist" may used by some persons as a "brash self-presentation strategy". Opinions? At any rate, there are only 5 "capitalist(e)"'s in the 1881 census.
  3. Investor? (The U.S. census team considers this an occupation)
  4. Corporate executive officers (in some cases these positions may have been honourary) Should be assume that "secretary" is always an executive office (as opposed to the way they are understood today)?
  5. Landed proprietors (The English census team considers this "idle rich")
Last updated: 9/1/2010

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