Old Time Occupations beginning with the letter S

Ships passenger lists, census returns and other documents used in genealogy may give an ancestor’s occupation, this list gives more modern interpretations of those terms.

Saddler – maker and repairer of saddles and bridles
Safernman – grower of saffron
Samitere/Samite – maker of a kind of heavy silk stuff
Sauntere – probably salt maker
Sausere – salter
Savant – servant
Sawbones – physician
Sawyer – sawer of wood; carpenter
Scabbler – person who uses a scabbler (pick) to trim the sides of a tunnel
Schumacker – shoemaker; cobbler
Scribbler – minor or worthless author
Scrivener – scribe or clerk; professional or public copyist or writer; notary public
Scrutiner – election judge
Seinter – girdlemaker
Seler/sellarius – sadder
Serviens – sergeant
Servus – servant
Sevier – sieve-maker
Sewer – tailor or shoemaker
Sharman/Sherman/Shearman – one who raised the surface of wollen cloth and then sheared it to a smooth surface; cutter of woolen cloth
Shether – see vaginarius
Shrieve – sheriff
Sifker – sievemaker
Sissor/Cissor – tailor
Sizer – one who applies size to textiles
Slater – roofer; tiler
Slatter – slater (same as hillard)
Slaymaker/Sleymaker – maker of reeds or slays (instruments to part threads in weaving) for looms
Slopseller – seller of ready-made clothes in a slop shop
Snobscat/Snob – shoe repairer; cobbler
Soper – soapmaker
Sorter – tailor
Soyor – sawyer
Spicer – grocer
Spinster – unmarried woman; spinner (female)
Spittleman – hospital attendant
Spragger – person who inserts a piece of wood (sprag) between the wheels of a lorry (truck) to bring it to a standstill
Spurrer/Spurrier – spurmaker
Stabler – ostler
Stasyon/Stawsun – probably a stationer
Stokiner – maker or weaver of stockings
Squarewright – carpenter, specifically a furniture maker
Squire – country gentleman; farm owner; justice of peace
Stuff Gown/Gownsman – junior barrister
Sugarer – dealer in sugar (grocer?)
Sumner – summoner or apparitor
Supercargo – officer on merchant ship who is in charge of cargo and the commercial concerns of the ship
Sutler – one who supplies an army with provisions

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