Drayman – the driver of a dray, a low, flat-bed wagon without sides, pulled generally by horses or mules that were used for transport of all kinds of goods [Wikipedia]
My gg grandfather Jeremiah Dwyer was a drayman in the mid 1800s in Saint Louis, Missouri, according to the 1850 and 1860 census. Saint Louis directories in the 1860s list him as a porter for Pottle & Bayley in 1864 and then M.L. Pottle & Co in most of the remaining years.
From Kennedy’s 1860 St. Louis Directory:
Pottle & Bayley, (Moses S. Pottle and Romanzo Bayley), com. butter and cheese, 3 and 4 N. Levee
By the 1870 census, Jeremiah is listed as an “R&C mcht” (I think) and I have no idea what this means. Suggestions, anyone? The value of real estate given in the 1870 census is $5,000 and personal estate $2,000, which seems like a lot of money.
Jeremiah’s son Edward Dwyer was a student at Bryant, Stratton & Carpenter’s College in the 1866 St Louis Directory, a plumber in 1868 and a student at Bryant & Stratton College in 1869. The 1870 census lists his occupation as plasterer.
I’m not sure how common it was to go to this type of college or how expensive it was. I hope someday to learn a little more about their lives during this time period.
But now I’m singing “Jeremiah was a Drayman” to the tune of “Jeremiah was a bullfrog” and I need to get that out of my head!