Friday, September 2, 2011

Those Who Labored

It's the start of Labor Day Weekend and I'm remembering all of my ancestors and what they labored at. I'm also thinking of those of our countrymen out of jobs today who want to labor but can not and I'm especially thankful for every blessing I have. (Wait, I'm getting ahead of the holidays... that goes with Thanksgiving!)

Amongst the ancestors there's a long list of farmers in the late 1700s and throughout the 1800s. In the 1700s we also have a tax collector (for the British Crown before the revolution in which he was a captain but turned to farming after) and a stone mason. Stone masonry was big back then. Have an another ancestor who was a stone mason and laid stone on the National Pike in Maryland and then traveled the area plying his craft and writing letters home to his beloved wife. (Note to self: must get digital copies of those precious letters from Mom and transcribe. Am so glad Mom's a bit of a pack rat!!)

As the 18th century moved along, there were plenty of coal miners. And rail road men too. The two occupations sort of go together in Western Maryland in the late 1800s. Those who could got work on the rail road. Those who couldn't went to work in the coal mines. Hard work all around.

Then there was my great grandfather Gustav Zeller. He was a barber and I've told a tale of two about his drinking fun here on the blog. He was quite the promoter and built his business up to a couple of shops throughout the county. Put a big fish tank in the window with exotic goldfish swimming around. His son took over from him when Gus Sr. retired. Gus Jr. also ran a floating card game in the basement with lots of drinking amongst the leaders of the community... but that's a story for another time!

In the 20th century many were teachers: seems to be the family business of the mid-century moment. Recently there's a turn to the law and the digital age. We keep up with the times!

Barber, entrepreneur.

Tobacco distributor, entrepreneur.

Pro baseball player.

Rail road and coal miners.

Computer wizard.


And not to say that the women of the family didn't work at home! See post below about Grandma... now that was WORK!

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