05 September 2011

Immigrating As Economists

A recent posting to the Daily Genealogy Transcriber got me started looking into "economist" or some form thereof, being listed as an occupation on passenger manifests in the 1850s. The original entry from 1853 can be viewed here. That ship landed in Baltimore.

After some discussion of this on the APG mailing list, I remembered that I had seen "economist" listed before as an occupation--the actual word in English, not in German. After some searching, I was able to find the entry I had noticed a few years before. This entry is part of a manifest of arrivals in New Orleans on 3 November 1855 on the D Kohlmann (NARA microfilm publication M259, roll 42).

A manifest which includes several immigrants listed as "Economists" and can be viewed here.
We'll have an update later, but I wanted to include the image and link to the entire manifest for those who have expressed an interest in the term and its use.

UPDATE 5 Sept 2011-1:22 PM Central time:

I'm inclined to believe the word on the 1853 manifest was a variation on Oeconom which is sometimes interpreted as "farm administrator." Frankly, I'm not certain what that means in terms of the George Trautvetter on the first manifest or the several people on the second one. What I do know is that it's not an economist in the sense we think of the word today and I don't think that's what is meant on the second manifest. What I do know about Trautvetter is that he did have enough money that he was able to by several hundred acres of farm land in Illinois outright within a few months of his arrival in the United States (based upon land records). I don't know about the others. At the very least it probably means that they were not land owners upon their arrival in the United States.

Being "economical" with someone's property is likely what it means literally--or something like that.

There is a wonderful list of German occupations here http://www.european-roots.com/german_prof.htm.

(Descendants of Hermann Sartorius are encouraged to contact me. He's my uncle...)