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Well Sinker: person who dug wells for water.
Wellmaster: person responsible for the availability of drinking water from the local well.
Wellwright: produced and sold the mechanical winding gear which was used to draw water from a well.
Wet Glover: made leather gloves.
Wet Nurse: a childminder who breast fed babies in lieu of their mother.
Wetter: a worker in a glass factory, or a worker in a paper mill who operated a water tank as part of the paper making process.
Whacker: drove a coach and horses.
Wharfinger: The owner of a wharf, or the person who managed it for the owner.
Wheel Tapper: inspected train carriage wheels for damage by tapping the wheels and listening to the noise they made. A similar idea to tapping a drinking glass to see if it is cracked.
Wheeler: a textile worker who operated a spinning wheel, a mining worker who controlled the pit ponies, or a craftsman who made wheels.
Wheelwright: a craftsman who produced and repaired wheels.
Wherryman: operated a riverboat.
Whey Cutter: a food industry worker. Whey is a by-product of cheese-making.
Whig : a Scottish term for the driver of a coach and horses.
Whim: a mine worker who operated winding gear to raise and lower men and equipment.
Whimseyman: alternate name for a Whim, who operated a mine's winding gear.
Whip Thong Maker: specifically refers to a person who crafted leatherware whip thongs. (Translation - ‘bullwhip’ is another term for a whip thong). A Whip Thong Maker may have also produced other equestrian leatherware items in a saddlery.
Whipcord Maker: a person who produced whips. Note that the term whipcord (without a space in the middle) may also refer to a corduroy-like ribbed fabric.
Whipcorder: alternate name for a Whipcord Maker.
Whipper-in: managed the hounds for a Hunt (a fox-hunting term).
Whipping Boy: not really an occupation likely to be found on your family tree records(!), but for some reason is included in many online lists of trades and occupations. A whipping boy received punishment in place of the misbehaving son of a wealthy person.
Whisket Weaver: an alternate name for a basket maker.
Whit Cooper: a craftsman who made tin barrels and other items from tin.
White Cooper: pan alternate name for a Whit Cooper.
White Limer: a decorator who used lime to cover walls.
Whitear: cleaned hides to make leather or fur as raw materials.
Whitener: worked in the textile industry, responsible for bleaching cloth.
Whitening Roll Maker: produced whitewash.
Copyright: Jane Hewitt. This dictionary is authorised for use on www.familyresearcher.co.uk only.
Whitesmith: specialised in crafting items from tin, lead, silver, pewter and the like, or who polished newly made white metal products. When found on census returns the occupational title Whitesmith needs to be put into context, taking into account the industry worked in. For example, a Whitesmith working in a cotton mill may have spent his time making or finishing metal clothing accessories and fastenings.
Whitester: an alternate name for a Whitener, who produced bleached white cloth.
Whitewing: a road sweeper.
Whitster: an alternate name for a Whitener, who produced bleached white cloth.
Whittawer: a craftsman who produced leather items for horses, such as saddled and harnesses, or any items made from bleached white leather.
This dictionary is my own work, and copyright Jane Hewitt. I sometimes find unauthorised (i.e. stolen) copies of my website content appearing on other people's websites. If you should read a group of identical glossary definitions elsewhere on the web, consider whether such sites are reputable or not.
Interested in history? Researching your family tree and wondering what those old occupations you found on census records actually mean? Maybe you are a creative writer looking for details to give your work authenticity? The Dictionary of Old Occupations explains the meaning of job titles, trades, professions and terms dating back through the centuries.
A handy reference ebook for researchers, creative writers and history buffs. Jane Hewitt is an experienced, professional genealogist. Aided by her husband Paul she compiled the Dictionary of Old Occupations over several years. This A-Z is an informative and fascinating read, giving insight into the day to day experiences of real people from all walks of life over many centuries.