Late War Union Soldiers
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17th VT

Economic

Census 1860

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Methodology

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Ratios of Military Compensation to Civilian Wages

Connecticut (Summer 1862)

 
Occupation Census
1860
Military Cash Comp
(438)
Plus Imputed Board
(600)
Military Cash Comp
(438)
Plus Imputed Board
(600)
    Low Avg Low Avg Seasonal Wages Seasonal Wages
    Wage Wage Wage Wage Low Avg Low Avg

 
Farmer 19.0 - - - - - - - -
Laborer1 9.7 - 1.1
(381)
- 1.6
(381)
- 1.5
(286)
- 2.1
(286)
Servant 8.0 - - - - - - - -
Farm laborer2 7.1 - 2.3
(192)
- N/Ap - 3.0
(144)
- N/Ap
Factory hand3 5.8 - 1.1
(381)
- 1.6
(381)
- 1.5
(286)
- 2.1
(286)
Carpenter - Joiner4 3.0 1.1
(390)
0.9
(462)
1.5
(390)
1.3
(462)
1.5
(293)
1.3
(347)
2.0
(293)
1.7
(347)
Clerk5 2.4 - 0.9
(468)
- 1.3
(468)
- 1.2
(351)
- 1.7
(351)
Shoemaker 2.4 - - - - - - - -
Mariner6 2.2 3.0
(144)
2.0
(216)
N/Ap N/Ap 4.1
(108)
2.7
(162)
N/Ap N/Ap
Machinist 1.7 1.4
(312)
0.9
(493)
1.9
(312)
1.2
(493)
1.9
(234)
1.2
(370)
2.6
(234)
1.6
(370)
Merchant 1.7 - - - - - - - -
Mechanic 1.6 - - - - - - - -
Teacher7 1.6 - N/Ap - N/Ap - 2.2
(203)
- N/Ap
Blacksmith 1.5 1.2
(353)
0.8
(577)
1.7
(353)
1.0
(577)
1.6
(265)
1.0
(433)
2.3
(265)
1.4
(433)
Weaver - woolen/worsted8 1.2 1.3
(349)
1.3
(349)
1.7
(349)
1.7
(349)
1.7
(262)
1.7
(262)
2.3
(262)
2.3
(262)
Mason 0.8 0.8
(546)
0.7
(624)
1.1
(546)
1.0
(624)
1.1
(410)
0.9
(468)
1.5
(410)
1.3
(468)
Coachmaker9 0.7 - 0.8
(577)
- 1.0
(577)
- 1.0
(433)
- 1.4
(433)
Molder - iron 0.5 0.9
(468)
0.9
(499)
1.3
(468)
1.2
(499)
1.2
(351)
1.2
(374)
1.7
(351)
1.6
(374)
Cabinetmaker10 0.3 - 0.7
(602)
- 1.0
(602)
- 1.0
(452)
- 1.3
(452)
Harnessmaker11 0.3 - 0.8
(577)
- 1.0
(577)
- 1.0
(433)
- 1.4
(433)
Spinner - woolen8 0.3 1.4
(312)
1.4
(312)
1.9
(312)
1.9
(312)
1.9
(234)
1.9
(234)
2.6
(234)
2.6
(234)
Teamster12 0.3 - 1.2
(378)
- 1.6
(378)
- 1.5
(284)
- 2.1
(284)
Tinsmith13 0.3 - 0.8
(577)
- 1.0
(577)
- 1.0
(433)
- 1.4
(433)
Wheelwright14 0.3 - 0.8
(549)
- 1.1
(549)
- 1.1
(412)
- 1.5
(412)
Boatman15 0.2 - 1.1
(381)
- 1.6
(381)
- 1.5
(286)
- 2.1
(286)
Printer16 0.2 - 0.7
(591)
- 1.0
(591)
- 1.0
(443)
- 1.4
(443)
Cooper17 0.1 - 0.9
(462)
- 1.3
(462)
- 1.3
(347)
- 1.7
(347)
Dyer - cotton goods8 0.1 1.4
(312)
1.4
(312)
1.9
(312)
1.9
(312)
1.9
(234)
1.9
(234)
2.6
(234)
2.6
(234)
Tanner18 0.1 - 1.1
(381)
- 1.6
(381)
- 1.5
(286)
- 2.1
(286)
Boiler maker 0.08 1.1
(390)
0.8
(524)
1.5
(390)
1.1
(524)
1.5
(293)
1.1
(393)
2.0
(293)
1.5
(393)
Millwright19 0.07 - 0.9
(493)
- 1.2
(493)
- 1.2
(370)
- 1.6
(370)
Lumberman20 0.05 - 1.1
(381)
- 1.6
(381)
- 1.5
(286)
- 2.1
(286)
Pattern maker 0.05 0.9
(468)
0.8
(565)
1.3
(468)
1.1
(565)
1.2
(351)
1.0
(424)
1.7
(351)
1.4
(424)
Engineer - stationary ? 1.1
(390)
0.8
(527)
1.5
(390)
1.1
(527)
1.5
(293)
1.1
(395)
2.0
(293)
1.5
(395)
Hod carrier ? 1.4
(312)
1.4
(312)
1.9
(312)
1.9
(312)
1.9
(234)
1.9
(234)
2.6
(234)
2.6
(234)
Loom fixer ? 1.4
(312)
1.2
(353)
1.9
(312)
1.7
(353)
1.9
(234)
1.6
(265)
2.6
(234)
2.3
(265)
 
Notes

Military Compensation is taken from Appendix D.

All civilian wage data is from Bureau of Labor Statistics, History of Wages in the United States from Colonial Times to 1928, Bulletin No. 605, Government Printing Office: Washington, D.C. (1934, republished Gale Research Company 1966), passim, unless otherwise stated.

Seasonal wages are calculated using a ¾ multiplier, where seasonal work is on average available only 9 months in the year. An exception is made for Teachers, where the seasonal wage was calculated by multiplying the average monthly wage by the average number of months school was in session.


(1) The wage rate for laborers in the 1860 Census (Statistics of the United States in 1860 at 512) has been adjusted for the 6% increase in the wage rate for laborers from 1860 to 1862 (Lebergott at 298).

(2) The History of Wages reports farm laborer wages in 1862 (and 1860) only for New York and New Jersey. (At 220) The 1860 Census reports wages for farm laborers for all ten Eastern States. (Statistics of the United States, (Including Mortality, Property, & C.,) in 1860, Government Printing Office: Washington, D.C. (1866) at 512.)

The data from the 1860 Census and the History of Wages for New York and New Jersey are significantly different. I believe that the History of Wages data is out of line for both New York and New Jersey. The Census data for farm laborers in 1860 ranges from $10.66 per month ($127.92 per year ) with board (Delaware) to $16.04 per month ($192.48 per year) (Rhode Island), with New York at $13.19 per month ($158.28 per year) and New Jersey at $11.91 ($142.92). The History of Wages reports $.88 per day ($274.56 per year at six days a week) for New York and $.42 per day ($131.04 per year) in 1860, which is way out of line with all the states in the 1860 Census data. Moreover, the 1865 New York Census included a question for the local enumerators about farm wages in 1860. My review of the 1865 New York Census responses has been limited to certain areas of Upstate New York, but they were all around $15 a month (or less)--$180 per year. As a result, I have used the 1860 Census data as a starting point rather than the History of Wages data in calculating the ratio for farm laborers. I also note that Stanley Lebergott used the 1860 Census data in Manpower in Economic Growth: The United States Record Since 1860 (at 263). The question then becomes how to adjust the 1860 census data to 1862. The History of Wages reports that wages for farm laborers increased in New York by 13.6% from 1860 to 1862, but decreased in New Jersey by 40.5%. Wages for common laborers increased by 5.7% from 1860 to 1862 (Lebergott at 298), while nonfarm wages in general increased by 2.9% (Historical Statistics of the United States at 66). I have used 6% to adjust the 1860 Census data to 1862.

(3) Lebergott assumed "a generally low level of skill" for factory hands and estimated their wage as the same as laborers. (At 302)

(4) The History of Wages treats carpenters and joiners as a single occupation. The 1860 Census treats them as separate occupations. The History of Wages reports Carpenters' and Joiners' wages for four of the Eastern States for 1862-- Connecticut, Massachusetts, New York and Pennsylvania--and five for 1864 and 1865--the same four plus New Jersey. (At 160) For these states, the workforce percentage includes both Carpenters and Joiners.

(5) Lebergott, Manpower in Economic Growth at 300-301.

(6) New York Tribune, March 30, 1860 at 5. See also Lebergott at 530.

(7) The "seasonal" wage is calculated by multiplying the average monthly wage for men in 1860 (Lebergott at 302) by the length of the school year in 1864 (California Department of Education, Annual Report, (1866) at 43)

(8) The History of Wages divided "weavers," "spinners" and "dyers” by “cotton goods” and “woolen goods,” while the 1860 Census combined them in a single occupation.

(9) Lebergott estimated coachmakers' wages as the same as blacksmiths' wages. (At 302)

(10) Lebergott estimated Cabinetmakes' wages at 1.58 times laborers wages. (See Lebergott at 301)

(11) Lebergott estimated harnessasmakers' wages as the same as blacksmiths' wages. (At 302)

(12) Lebergott estimated the average wage for teamsters as 1.26 times the average wage for laborers. (Lebergott at 299)

(13) Lebergott estimated Tinsmiths' wages as the same as Blacksmiths' wages. (Lebergott at 301)

(14) Lebergott estimated Wheelwrights' wages as 1.44 times Laborers' wages. (Lebergott at 301)

(15) "Boatmen were not readily distinguishable in their character, attainments, or skills from common labor." (Lebergott at 322) "A flat rate of $1 a day appears throughout this long [1795-1860] period..., with the war time rise beginning in 1862. (Id. at 325) I have used the wage rate for Laborers.

(16) Lebergott estimated printers' wages as 1.55 times labororers wages. (See 301, 298)

(17) Lebergott estimated the average wage for coopers as the same as for carpenters and I have followed that here. (Lebergott at 301) However, for the only state for which wage data was available for both coopers and carpenters in the History of Wages--New York, the average wage for carpenters was 36% higher in 1864 and 24% higher in 1862. (History of Wages at 160, 460)

(18) Lebergott estimated tanners' wages as the same as laborers' wages. (At 302)

(19) Lebergott estimated Millwrights' wages as the same as Machinists' wages and I have followed that here. (Lebergott at 301) The only state for which wage data for both Millwrights and Machinists is reported in the History of Wages is Pennsylvania. For 1862, the ratio of the average Millwright's wages to the average Machinist's wages was 1.1 and for 1864 1.2. (History of Wages at 299, 308)

(20) Lebergott estimated lumbermen's wages as the same as laborers' wages. (At 302)

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