Grandpa’s Jobs

Another Labor Day holiday, so time to look again at the work some of my ancestors did. While most of Dad’s side of the family were farmers in the early years, eventually some of them found work off the farm.

My Grandfather, Loran McKinley, Sr. (1916-2003) worked several jobs in his lifetime. He compiled a list of those jobs, probably for a class reunion. Eventually, that list made it to my collection.

First, from 1936 to 1938, he worked at the American Rolling Mill (ARMCO Steel Mill) in Middletown, OH. The company produced rolled sheets of steel. He had this job when he got married to my Grandmother, Margaret. While there, he practiced and honed his skills as a crane operator. His first pay check for 40 hours of work was $36. The recession caused him to move on to another job.


 This card gave him access to practice on the cranes at the factory.

From 1939 to 1941, he worked for Interstate Foundry in Indianapolis, IN. He worked as a foreman and overhead crane operator. He made 40¢ per hour.

From 1941 to 1950, he was self employed. He had a farm & drove a milk route for Polk Dairy. No, he was not a “milk man.” He picked up milk from the dairy farmers and took it to the Polk Dairy in Indianapolis. I’ve been told that his job was considered “essential” and therefore he was not drafted into the military during WWII.

From 1950 to 1952, he worked for AVCO Corporation in Richmond, IN. He was Security Guard at this manufacturing plant.

Then, from 1953 to 1981, he worked for the Chrysler Corporation as a Security Guard. He indicated that 3rd shift pay was $3.56/hour.

He retired from Chrysler and moved to a farm near Sheridan, IN.

After I saw the list of jobs that he had, I asked Grandpa what was his favorite. He replied, “farmer.” So, even though he had experience in other areas of work, he still went back to the original family business, farming.

© MJM 2017