Chairmen and Chairwomen

When the hand-written census records were transcribed, by MHMS volunteers or (outsoucers), some interesting and amusing discoveries were made. One of these is the large number of chairmen and chairwomen that were around in the Georgian and Regency times.

In those times, domestic servants were common (that is to say, not rare), and “charwoman” was a frequent entry. In some cases, this has been misread by transcribers as “chairwoman”.

Chairman, on the other hand, is correct. When labour was cheap, sedan chairs or “hand chairs” were still used. The operators were called “chair men”, or sometimes “hand chair men”.


Scrubbers and Slappers

These are modern insults, but were occupations in former times. A scrubber is another term for a domestic servant. A slapper (or slaper) is someone who worked in a pottery preparing the clay for the potter.