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Info about an 'ivory turner'

ProfilePosted byOptionsPost Date


Chrispynoodle Report 10 Mar 2006 09:55

Does any one have any info on the above occupation (c1870)? One would assume that it involves the carving of ivory on a machine, probably in a factory. Would it have been a highly skilled job; would an apprenticeship have been necessary or was it a job any one could have done? It is relevant to me as I have a marriage cert in which the groom's father is an ivory turner, but on the census (if I have got the right person) he is a starch maker. As the surname is common, I needed the 'clincher' of the father's occupation to convince meyself I had found the right person in the census. Thanks in anticipation!! Chris


Chrispynoodle Report 10 Mar 2006 10:29

Thanks Jean...will do


Suzanne Report 10 Mar 2006 10:31

IVORY WORKERS Included makers of combs, boxes, billiard balls, buttons, and keys for pianofortes. Suzanne


Heather Report 10 Mar 2006 10:35

How far apart are the occupations of the man|? It may be ivory turning was a real step up for him?


♥Athena Report 10 Mar 2006 10:39

Chris If the marriage was in 1875 (which is when it says he was an ivory turner), have you looked for the father on the 1881 census to see what his occupation is listed as then? It could be that he changed his occupation some time between 1871 and 1875. Finding him later on might help you solve this puzzle.


Chrispynoodle Report 10 Mar 2006 10:41

heather He was always listed in censuses from 1851 to 1891 as a starch maker (he went up in the world towards latter years when he was a foreman in a starch making factory!). Wonder if a skilled man would just be in a factory as a starch maker. Perhaps there weren't many jobs around. Perhaps I have got the wrong family.


Chrispynoodle Report 10 Mar 2006 10:42

Athena He was always a starch maker on the censuses.


Heather Report 10 Mar 2006 10:56

Oh, doesnt sound likely then does it? Suppose could be a mistake on the part of the clerk who copied out the original? But I would have thought an ivory turner was a skilled job - ivory was a very expensive comodity and would need a lot of skilled workmanship.


♥Athena Report 10 Mar 2006 11:00

Oh...that doesn't help you any then. Well, I guess Sarah may have exaggerated her father's job (perhaps William Clark the ivory turner was a relation and she quite fancied the idea of that job for her own father?). I just had a look for Ivory Turners on the 1881 Census and there are not any John Clark's showing up with that profession and none on the 1871 either - so it doesn't look like John Clark was an ivory turner. Another explanation could be that John Clark trained as an ivory turner in his youth but never managed to get a job in the trade and had to do something else instead. Perhaps he made stuff with ivory in his spare time to make extra cash? Sorry, not much help really...


Carol Report 10 Mar 2006 11:36

Is it possible that the word 'turner' could be 'tuner' and that the person in a piano tuner.

Glen In Tinsel Knickers

Glen In Tinsel Knickers Report 10 Mar 2006 12:06

Quite recently (post xmas certainly) one of the satellite channels had a programme with a piece on ivory workers,many were young children and workhouse inmates,i suppose it depends on the whereabouts of the workhouse and the 'works' so to speak but i would think it was a step up from wool combing and the likes of the match maker. Glen


Chrispynoodle Report 10 Mar 2006 12:13

Thanks all Will have to find some other way of confirming/finding Sarah Clark's family. Might send for some other certs of other possible family members and hope a witness or something turns up to form a connection. Don't you just yearn for an unusual name...seem to be cursed with Scotts, Wilsons and Clarks (no offence to anyone!!). Regards Chris


Chrispynoodle Report 10 Mar 2006 12:18

Glen, Maybe it wasn't such a skilled job then. Obviously no fame and fortune in that branch then (do have a founding member of the Labour Party and MP in another branch though). It's usually a just a bonus if they could read and write. Thanks anyway regards Chris