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image of the Electric Tabulating System<br />(The Tabulator)
Electric Tabulating System
(The Tabulator)
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1890 Census: Occupations

The United States was a very different place in 1890. The individual Census Takers who would visit your home or farm were given a list of codes for each occupation that they could then record on the census questionnaire for your family.

Take a look at this list...you may have to go to your dictionary to find out what some of these jobs were. There are some interesting oddities: photographer is on the list even though George Eastman's first camera (which he called the "Kodak") wasn't offered for sale until 1888; A person who built stairs for a living had their own category; Railroads had thirteen different occupations, but they were only two codes.
What can you find?

Hollerith Card: List of 1890 Census Occupation codes.