Dillon County History and Genealogy, graphic by Victoria

Old Occupations


Many thanks to Ed Howell, Betty Jo Stewart, and Sarah Goins for so kindly helping me with questions about cotton mills.

The list below is a work in progress and all additions or corrections would be most welcome.

Opener -
Pickers - also known as lappers, continued to clean the cotton and organize it into continuous, even sheets
Card hand then fed these sheets into carding machines
Boss carder - A person who operated a carding machine used to prepare cotton for weaving by removing the knots and tangles.

Drawing frame
Slubber hand A person who operated the machine used to prepare cotton for spinning
Intermediate hands
Speeder hands
Spinner - The spinner's job was to move quickly up and down a row of machines, repairing breaks and snags
Doffer - As bobbins on the spinning frames filled with thread, doffers replaced them with empty ones. Full bobbins, or spools, were known as "cones". The frame that holds the spoods has about 250-300 spools on each side of the frame. This is call a side the frame has two sides.

Spoolers ran machines that combined the thread from ten to fifteen different bobbins
Twisters A person who operated the machine used for twisting yarns and threads together

Warpers mounted yarn from the winder on a large frame called a creel
Overseer of spinning
Section hand
Overseer of twisting
Band boys
Sweepers A person employed in the mills to keep the floor clean
Oiler and bander

Creelers - made sure there was a constant supply of fresh bobbins for the cotton emerging from the card frames
Beam warper
Slash tender
Drawing-in girls

Back to Dillon County, SC Cotton and Cotton Mills
Dillon County History and Genealogy

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