Of the 2 million Australians employed in 1911, 80 per cent were men.
Nearly 40 per cent of women worked in ‘domestic service and attendance’, shown in grey. Of these, two thirds worked as house servants (that’s the big grey bubble at the top right of the women’s chart). This was the most common job for women in 1911.
Ninety-two of the 524 occupations recorded in Australia’s first national census in 1911 didn’t employ any women, a Fairfax Media analysis reveals. (These jobs are shown in red in the chart below.) No women worked in the navy, defence or police forces. There were no women coach or railway engine drivers, magistrates, electricians or chimney sweeps.
A further 103 occupations employed between one and four women. The 1911 census records one woman among the 13,565 stevedores, one woman among the 4377 jockeys, and one woman among the 1730 letter carriers, for example.
On the other hand, only 34 of the 10,223 Australians working as a “milliner, staymaker or glovemaker” were men. Only 40 of Australia’s 9049 hospital, asylum and sick nurses were men, while only two men were recorded among Australia’s 2685 domestic nurses.
Read the full story here and view the interactive graphic.
These days, women make up nearly half the workforce and are found in every occupation. Half belong to the commercial class and one quarter belong to the professional class.