A Dictionary of Occupational Terms Based on the Classification of Occupations used in the Census of Population, 1921.
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Sub-order 1.—Textile Workers

380.—Croft Workers (not Labourers)

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batcher, batch roller ; beamer (grey cloth)
guides cloth from singeing machine, or from sewing room, on to a beam, generally by means of an attachment to calender mangle or other machine.
beamer (grey cloth)
see batcher.
(i) attends a beck, or vat containing either souring or bleaching liquor, which he prepares; submerges yarn in liquor, and withdraws it when operation is complete;
(ii) attends a beck, or vat, attached to any machine in bleach croft.
bleacher ; foreman bleacher (occasional use), whitster
in charge of bleaching and allied processes, and is responsible for adjustment of machines and for their good condition, also for quality of work turned out in all departments prior to finishing; supervises work of machine men engaged in souring, chemicking, liming, boiling, blueing, and other processes in bleach croft, and acts generally as foreman in bleach croft.
bleacher, piece
a bleacher q.v. engaged in bleaching piece goods, as distinguished from yarn.
bleacher, yarn
see reeler (yarn bleaching) .
(i) blue mangler; passes cloth or yarn, after bleaching, through a solution of laundry blue, to neutralise slight creamy tint left by bleaching; usually works by hand;
(ii) is in charge of blueing operations, whether done by hand or by blue manglers.
see kier man.
boiler, cloth (linen finishing)
minds a boiling machine, which gives white linen cloth a permanent finish; winds cloth upon a perforated copper roller; covers whole with a wrapper, and securely ties ends; puts whole in a cistern, where cloth is boiled by forcing steam or boiling water through it.
boiler man
see kier man ; cf. boiler man (951).
bouker, bowker
takes up a scoopful of lime or caustic solution, and distributes it over yarn or cloth in kier as yarn or cloth is packed therein; repeats process until kier is full.
chemicker, chemicking machine minder
minds a kind of mangle, trough of which contains chemicking (bleaching) solution; places material in solution and removes it when process is complete; is sometimes also responsible for souring process, cf. sourer.
chemic mixer ; liquor man
mixes bleaching powder with water, in readiness for use in kiers.
cleaner, bleach croft ; rub board man
cleans specially dirty parts of grey (unbleached) cloth, by rubbing or scrubbing on a board with soap and water; cf. bleach croft cleaner (399).
dash wheel man, dash wheel minder
see wash mill man.
dumper, dumping machine man
see finisher, yarn.
field man
spreads cloth, usually linen, on grass, .to expose it to bleaching action or sunlight; keeps it well sprinkled with water.
finisher, yarn ; dumper, dumping machine man
feeds and minds a machine in which hanks of yarn, made up into a chain, are passed through a blueing or tinting solution, and between two squeezing rollers covered with cotton rope, upper of which has a dumping or jumping motion; replenishing tinting solution in trough as necessary.
foreman bleacher
see bleacher.
kier man, kier minder ; boiler, boiler man, pan man, panside man, pot man, stewkier, stewkier man (dialect)
is in charge of kiers, either closed or open, in which cloth or yarn is boiled in an alkaline solution; determines length of operation, and regulates circulation of liquor and its temperature in kiers by means of steam corks, pump valves, etc.; runs yarn or cloth and solution, in kiers, and empties kiers when process is complete.
limer, liming machine minder
attends to liming machine, having a trough filled with lime solution through which cloth is passed to prepare it for kiers; works under supervision of kier man q.v., threading cloth through pot eyes, rollers, liming trough and winch to kier at start of operation, and controlling flow of lime solution to trough by means of valve.
liquor man
see chemic mixer.
loft hand
(North of Ireland linen trade) general term for any worker in finishing department of linen bleaching works, including sourer, souring machine minder, washer, washing machine man q.v.
machine man in croft
general term for a man minding any machine in any department of bleach croft, including bluer, chemicking machine minder, yarn finisher, liming machine minder, mangier, reeler, scouring machine man, souring machine minder, squeezer, washing machine man q.v.
mangler, blue
see bluer.
pan man, panside man
see kier man.
pot man
see kier man.
reeler (yarn bleaching) ; yarn bleacher
attends a machine which keeps hanks of yarn revolving in bleaching solution; places yarn on roller; when yarn is sufficiently impregnated, places it on wagon for removal.
rub board man
see cleaner, bleach croft.
scourer (fustian, cord, and velvet), fustian scourer, velvet scourer ; wincer, wincher (velvet)
passes fustian, velvet, etc., through a solution to remove stiffening in preparation for dyeing, using a winch to pull it through trough machine.
scourer, cloth scourer, scouring machine man (wool)
attends a scouring machine, which removes size and other impurities from cloth; passes cloth between squeezing rollers and sews ends together to make endless band; fills trough with scouring liquor or sud and heats to proper temperature by means of steam; controls machine by levers and removes cloth when cleaned.
(i) is in charge of souring process, i.e. treatment of cloth with dilute acid before and after chemicking, cf. chemicker; supervises work of souring machine minder q.v.; often takes charge of bleaching (chemicking) department in absence of bleacher q.v. and acts as his assistant generally;
(ii) see souring machine minder.
souring machine minder ; sourer
(i) (cloth)is in charge of a souring machine or souring cistern in which cloth is treated with dilute acid in preparation for chemicking, i.e. bleaching process proper, and again after chemicking; operations as for washing machine man;
(ii) (yarn) washes i yarn after dyeing, in a souring solution.
squeezer, squeezer attendant, squeezing machine minder
attends to squeezing machine, which extracts as much water as possible from cloth before it goes to mangles; passes end of cloth piece or yarn chain between rollers; controls machine by levers; adjusts pressure of rollers by means of levers or springs.
a washing machine man q.v. who runs cloth through hot water, and allows it to lie for some hours or overnight to loosen and so assist in removal of superfluous size from warp, in preparation for bleaching.
stewkier, stewkier man (dialect)
see kier man.
washer, washer-out, cloth washer, washing machine man, washing machine minder, washing-off machine man
attends a washing machine, of any type, used for washing cloth before or after any bleaching process; passes rope of cloth through pot eyes and through nip of rollers, down through water trough and up over guide roller to nip again; repeats passing, so that cloth passes along rollers in a spiral form, being alternately run through water and squeezed between rollers, leaving machine through a second pot eye; controls machine by levers and water supply by cocks.
washer, waste
a washer q.v. attending a machine in which cotton or other waste, waste yarn, rovings, etc., are washed.
wash mill man, wash wheel man ; dash wheel man, dash wheel minder
attends a wash mill or wheel, a perforated wooden drum, which is made to revolve, and in which cloth is washed in cold water; packs cloth loosely in wash wheel, sets wheel in motion, and takes cloth out when finished.
see bleacher.
wincer, wincher (velvet)
see scourer (fustian, cord, and velvet).

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From: A Dictionary of Occupational Terms Based on the Classification of Occupations used in the Census of Population, 1921,
Ministry of Labour, 1927. Digitised by Peter Christian, August, 2016.   This text is in the Public Domain.