Census Abbreviations Updated

While researching using the 1841 Scottish Census I came across the abbreviation "F S" under profession. As I was not sure what this was I did a quick search online and came across this useful list of commonly used abbreviations in a rootschat.com forum here.

These are the official abbreviations used in the censuses:

Ag. Lab. 1841-81 Agricultural labourer
Ap. 1841-61 Apprentice
Army 1841 Members of HM land forces of whatever rank
Cl. 1841-61 Clerk
FS. 1841 Female servant
H.P. 1841 Members of HM armed forces on half-pay
HLW 1841 Hand loom weaver (followed by silk, cotton etc for material they work in)
FWK 1841 Frame work knitter
Ind. 1841 Independent - people living on their own means
J. 1841 Journeyman
M. 1841 Manufacturer
m. 1841 Maker - as in 'Shoe m.'
MS 1841 Male servant
Navy 1841 Members of HM naval forces, including marines,
of whatever rank
P. 1841 Pensioners in HM armed forces
Rail Lab. 1851 Railway labourer
Serv. 1861 Servant
Sh. 1841 Shopman

Are there any others that you know of?


Sheena said...

How about:

HLW - (1841) hand loom weaver (followed by silk, cotton etc for material they work in)

FWK - (1841) frame work knitter

My Scots Ancestors said...


Thanks very much - I'll add them to list.

Keep them coming!


Tricia Stewart said...

I just found the following for my ancestor in the 1841 census

Den Mrcth J

I'm still looking for the meaning but it looks like the J might at least be Journeyman? So thank you for that information!


My Scots Ancestors said...


Puzzling occupation! It may be a incorrect transcription or are you working from an original image?

Have you had a look at subsequent censuses or at relatives' or neighbours' occupations for any other clues?


Anonymous said...

Two of my Irish immigrant ancestors (actually husband and wife) have "mxl" among identifying abbreviations in the 1865 USA census record. I can't find it listed anywhere.

Anonymous said...

I'm trying to figure out what Private 4th Dr Gas means

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C Morrison said...

I have found an occupation which could be LMO or SMO in the 1841 census. Can anyone help?

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