Ladies Marking Time, Bringing Home The Bacon; Who We Were

Fewer ads. Lots of American Civil War content!
JOIN NOW: REGISTER HERE!

JPK Huson 1863

Brev. Brig. Gen'l
Forum Host
Joined
Feb 14, 2012
Messages
18,999
Location
Central Pennsylvania
millinrs.JPG

A mother and Milliner - creator of bonnets and hats for ladies, and daughter, in what seems a typical " Occupational Photograph " of the era. Her trade is displayed as a centerpiece and, quite wonderfully, the daughter's doll is wearing a tiny hat.

" Occupational Photographs " seem to have been around nearly as long as photographs. An expert will be able to tell us the genesis- really hard finding information on how these began or why? Seems to me, intentionally or no, it is possible to scoop other photos into this category- purists will disagree but really, what else is this?

beaufort teachers1 large.jpg

Teachers poured into Beaufort, South Carolina, during the war, responding to a call. This may stand as their " Occupational Photograph ". An entire race was free to learn. Teachers taught.

" Occupational Photographs " seem to have been around nearly as long as photographs. An expert will be able to tell us the genesis- really hard finding information on how these began or why? To qualify, one's ' tools of the trade ' should be visible, if not employed in the photograph. I've ditched this, a little just to be able to highlight some amazing women- and what they did.

iron.jpg

Fairly well known photo, this woman must have been a professional whose trade included an iron- not merely ' an ironer '. How funny. She does not seem to be a laundress, perhaps a seamstress? She does is a little baffling.

Like anything else, perhaps people were just pretty happy about themselves and a profession. In some cases, perhaps a photographer doing what any, self respecting shutter clicker has done since Day One- documenting Time and the people in it. You know, looking around our world and wondering who would like to share it.

art2.JPG

This artist's bloomer outfit indicates a young girl who is already of an independent spirit, inpatient of convention. These really were disliked by ' mainstream ' society, thought to be ugly and a little reactionary. They were both- but she carries it off very well. She could easily have been a professional artist, too- not merely pursuing a hobby. Art was considered a must-buy for one's home and artists had loyal followings.

Thankfully, a lot of us. Hopefully none of these will be post war ( unless stated ). We ladies, though frequently badly impeded in a lopsidedly male work force, either seeking employment to make ends meet or carving professions for ourselves. Those unpaid professions, like ' Mom ' may have rewards, just no 401K. We, meaning we girls, sure did work. For a living.



Make no mistake- a 3rd group can be added, sending a purist or two into orbit, if there is such a thing. This, of female magazine editor Sarah Jane Hale, of Godey's Lady's Book, shows us, if not a woman displaying the tools of her trade, a well recognized, professional woman. Sarah Hale, editor.
editor sarah hale.jpg


And another- Dr. Harriet Austin, sans medical bag- female docs nearly invariably adopted the bloomer dress. Not always but a it was a marked percentage.
doctor harriet austin.jpg

No ' tools of the trade ', please excuse. We just love our early, lady docs. Tough finding pics of them in med school, holding skulls.

f phot.jpg

An obvious ' Occupational Photograph ', a photographer taking a photograph of another. Love her!

Three, ' Occupational Photographs ' showing instruments. It becomes tough, ascertaining whether these would b professionals or following a love for their music? Either really is possible.
f guitar.jpg


occ girl pianoo.jpg


occ lady guitar.jpg

This last, perhaps singers?

Several ' knitters ' and yes, possibly someone was indeed paid to knit. Women were paid to sew, women wore knitted garments. It makes sense ' paid knitter ' would make it to the list of Occupations, Photographed.

occ knitting.jpg

Another interpretation of this photo is, her daughter ( wedding ring prominent ) is pregnant and grandmother is beginning a baby bootie. So- Occupations, anyway. :angel:

54eeb1b0af988d1cfc99166b9e2ea1a5--photo-vintage-vintage-photos.jpg

Not happy about this one- women became this occupation through needing to eat- she's slightly post war. Displaced women by the bought food, by showing their garters. Had to include her because it was an awful fact. It's the way it was.

occ loom.jpg

Pre-war, we hear a lot about mill workers. She seems to be one and love her smile,no? Not all employers sent women home quite so happy or well coifed. It's wonderful knowing some did.

Tons more- and of course men's are more fascinating. We got there- from here.

If anyone has more- feel free!.
 

Attachments

Anna Elizabeth Henry

1st Lieutenant
Silver Patron
Joined
Feb 15, 2015
Messages
3,509
Location
New York, New York
Women of the era often worked very hard and rarely received the credit they are due. Imagine running a household and raising children without modern appliances and comforts and having to work? Many women in the era took in work they could do while at home, like washing and sewing. Others ran small assembly line-like operations doing 19th century piecework by putting silk flowers together with their children.

It's hard for us to imagine how desperate some women were, especially during and after the war years. Today there are many social programs, both governmental and private to help struggling families who've lost a bread winner, but back then it was on you and any family you had who could help. Thanks @JPK Huson 1863 for reminding of us of these industrious ladies!
 
Fewer ads. Lots of American Civil War content!
JOIN NOW: REGISTER HERE!

Anna Elizabeth Henry

1st Lieutenant
Silver Patron
Joined
Feb 15, 2015
Messages
3,509
Location
New York, New York
Bored at the office - all my bosses are away this week - I did some digging on photographs of working women in the 19th century and turned up a whole fascinating, albeit dangerous lives of women miners in England. I've also included a link below one of the pictures wherein you can see more pictures and an article about these mining women who wore pants no less in 1841!!!

women miners.jpg


more mining ladies_1867.jpg

https://mikelatrinadedivulgacao.blogspot.pt/2017/09/the-women-miners-in-pants-who-shocked.html

We've also got some flowers sellers - very My Fair Lady-ish

street flowers_1877.jpg


And another very popular position of women in the era -maids
maids.jpg
 

alan polk

2nd Lieutenant
Joined
Jun 11, 2012
Messages
2,674
Women worked so hard. They kept their families together. Wonderful photographs.
So true, and to think how, back then, the mere act of bearing children was an occupational hazard in itself. One of my direct male ancestors had 3 wives, two of them dying in child birth but not before giving him 6 or 7 kids. (My G, G, G, Grandmother being the second wife.) The third wife was lucky I guess, she gave him 2 children before he apparently kicked over from old age. Who knows, the young lady might have knocked the old codger over the head late one night!!:bounce:

So becoming a mother was not only a job but a dangerous job to boot. Anyway, Those were some brave women for sure, at home and in the workplace!!
 
Fewer ads. Lots of American Civil War content!
JOIN NOW: REGISTER HERE!

JPK Huson 1863

Brev. Brig. Gen'l
Forum Host
Joined
Feb 14, 2012
Messages
18,999
Location
Central Pennsylvania
Bored at the office - all my bosses are away this week - I did some digging on photographs of working women in the 19th century and turned up a whole fascinating, albeit dangerous lives of women miners in England. I've also included a link below one of the pictures wherein you can see more pictures and an article about these mining women who wore pants no less in 1841!!!

View attachment 177961

View attachment 177962
https://mikelatrinadedivulgacao.blogspot.pt/2017/09/the-women-miners-in-pants-who-shocked.html

We've also got some flowers sellers - very My Fair Lady-ish

View attachment 177963

And another very popular position of women in the era -maids
View attachment 177964

Thank you! And now I'm distracted by the maids, last photograph- any guesses why on earth the photographer made a point photographing them with one reading? These sessions had various points to them, or could. Had to be a reason one young woman is ' reading '.

Women coal miners, whew. Have not come across images of them from this country? Not to say we did not have the, just haven't seen them or heard of them. Well, being stuffed into some of those factories wasn't a terrific life so it must have been an off kind of respect for how frail we were, if that is why we had none.

Came across an awesome, English photo of Dickensian origin- have it somewhere! Women who spit pebbles, through a tube, at windows to wake people up. Alarm clocks!
 

JPK Huson 1863

Brev. Brig. Gen'l
Forum Host
Joined
Feb 14, 2012
Messages
18,999
Location
Central Pennsylvania
So true, and to think how, back then, the mere act of bearing children was an occupational hazard in itself. One of my direct male ancestors had 3 wives, two of them dying in child birth but not before giving him 6 or 7 kids. (My G, G, G, Grandmother being the second wife.) The third wife was lucky I guess, she gave him 2 children before he apparently kicked over from old age. Who knows, the young lady might have knocked the old codger over the head late one night!!:bounce:

So becoming a mother was not only a job but a dangerous job to boot. Anyway, Those were some brave women for sure, at home and in the workplace!!

Aren't those stories awful?? Makes you cringe, thinking about it. He lost two that way? Those poor women and the poor widower! I've seen cases where several wives seem to have just worn out You know, there will be 10 children, then a date of death, then a new, less shredded wife raises those orphans.

Yes, agreed! Goodness! We have photos from the mid and late 1800's, from the family. There will be children all decked out in white dressed, lace, bows and frills, boys in jackets, short pants, etc. Each garment took forever and ver to wash, dry, press and maintain. How did they do that plus - well, just plus!
 

GS

Retired User
Joined
Jan 31, 2017
Messages
2,530
I'm grateful to whoever began the trend of "occupational photos", because we now have glimpses into life in another era, not just still faces and attire. As is true today, a person's occupation defined them, and now with these photos, their descendant's have more than a name and persona.
 
Fewer ads. Lots of American Civil War content!
JOIN NOW: REGISTER HERE!

Belle Montgomery

Sergeant Major
Joined
Oct 25, 2017
Messages
2,479
Location
44022
Aren't those stories awful?? Makes you cringe, thinking about it. He lost two that way? Those poor women and the poor widower! I've seen cases where several wives seem to have just worn out You know, there will be 10 children, then a date of death, then a new, less shredded wife raises those orphans.

Yes, agreed! Goodness! We have photos from the mid and late 1800's, from the family. There will be children all decked out in white dressed, lace, bows and frills, boys in jackets, short pants, etc. Each garment took forever and ver to wash, dry, press and maintain. How did they do that plus - well, just plus!

Fluting iron.jpg

Fluting Iron -
pleat iron.jpg

goffering iron.jpg
goffering irons.jpg

First two photos -“This invention relates to a machine having a pair of corrugated rollers, between which the fabric or material to be fluted is drawn by the rotation of said rollers, the fluting effect, as well as the simultaneous rotation of the rollers in opposite directions, being caused by the intermeshing of the corrugations of one roller with the corresponding grooves of the other. These rollers are made hollow in order to heat them by the introduction of heating-irons or otherwise, and thus render the fabric more susceptible to the fluting action of the rollers.”

I CAN'T imagine having the patience for these! Most young women nowadays aren't even familiar with easy to use automatic shut-off irons!
It's obvious why a woman invented the first "permanent press" cotton and the Brooks Brothers followed by using her invention in 1953 by adding Dacron and Polyester for the first ever "wash and wear clothes"
http://www.nytimes.com/2013/10/08/business/ruth-benerito-cotton-chemist-of-permanent-press-renown-dies-at-97.html
 

AnnaLee

First Sergeant
Joined
Sep 4, 2017
Messages
1,301
Enjoyed the pics, Annie. Reminds me of my grandmothers.

My grandmothers (paternal and maternal) who were born in the late 1800's had 8 and 9 children at home in the 20's. My paternal grandmother died in childbirth with the 9th child who also died but left 8 orphaned children of which one was my dad. Neither grandmother had electricity or modern conveniences. Used outhouses until the 70's. Although they never worked outside of their homes they did everything else: chopping wood, killing and preparing their meats (one lived on a farm), churning butter, doing laundry outside, carrying water from the well, cooking food on a large iron stove which was so hot in the summer that all doors and windows were left open. A "Good Morning" stove sat in the middle of the living room and was used to heat the entire house. I remember when I was about four watching my maternal grandmother doing laundry outdoors. She had a tub full of water over an open fire and stirred the clothing around with a long stick. She also made lye soap and mixed up concoctions of Sulphur with lard to apply on wounds. She also could use a shotgun as well as any man. My parents moved to another state when I was 4 1/2 and visiting my grandmother once a year was like going back in time. A different world.
 

Anna Elizabeth Henry

1st Lieutenant
Silver Patron
Joined
Feb 15, 2015
Messages
3,509
Location
New York, New York
Thank you! And now I'm distracted by the maids, last photograph- any guesses why on earth the photographer made a point photographing them with one reading? These sessions had various points to them, or could. Had to be a reason one young woman is ' reading '.

Women coal miners, whew. Have not come across images of them from this country? Not to say we did not have the, just haven't seen them or heard of them. Well, being stuffed into some of those factories wasn't a terrific life so it must have been an off kind of respect for how frail we were, if that is why we had none.

Came across an awesome, English photo of Dickensian origin- have it somewhere! Women who spit pebbles, through a tube, at windows to wake people up. Alarm clocks!
Could the maid be reading a letter from home?

I didn't find any 19th century women coal miners in the US, at least none that were photographed as far I as could find. I did find some women gold rush miners with their husbands wearing some interesting clothing.

Ha! Yes, the knocker-up was an actual job in the UK, and very popular in the 19th century.

 
Fewer ads. Lots of American Civil War content!
JOIN NOW: REGISTER HERE!

Belle Montgomery

Sergeant Major
Joined
Oct 25, 2017
Messages
2,479
Location
44022
Bored at the office - all my bosses are away this week - I did some digging on photographs of working women in the 19th century and turned up a whole fascinating, albeit dangerous lives of women miners in England. I've also included a link below one of the pictures wherein you can see more pictures and an article about these mining women who wore pants no less in 1841!!!

View attachment 177961

View attachment 177962
https://mikelatrinadedivulgacao.blogspot.pt/2017/09/the-women-miners-in-pants-who-shocked.html

We've also got some flowers sellers - very My Fair Lady-ish

View attachment 177963

And another very popular position of women in the era -maids
View attachment 177964
Note the "chatelaine" on the woman on the left in the maids photo. All the "appendages" on it are her tools to help accomplish her work of the day. Looks like there maybe a hidden one in her apron on the waist of maid on the right too. She's reading/dictating the list made in the "morning room" by the lady of the house. Because of her uniform she may be the housemaid dictating to the less formal , perhaps cook because she may be stirring something in a bowl. So hard to tell, wish, I knew for sure.
 
Fewer ads. Lots of American Civil War content!
JOIN NOW: REGISTER HERE!
Fewer ads. Lots of American Civil War content!
JOIN NOW: REGISTER HERE!
Top