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Estimating Selection Effects in Occupational Mobility in a 19th-Century City Author(s): Melissa A. Hardy Source: American Sociological Review, Vol.

54, No. 5 (Oct., 1989), pp. 834-843 Published by: American Sociological Association Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/2117757 . Accessed: 06/08/2013 10:51
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ESTIMATING SELECTION EFFECTS IN OCCUPATIONAL MOBILITY IN A 19TH-CENTURY CITY*


MELISSA A. HARDY Florida State University

This study examines the relationship between the processes of occupational mobility and persistence. Using manuscript census data from Indianapolis, 1850-1860, I assess the importanceof selection effects on the likelihoodof upward or downwardmobilityand on the socioeconomic status achieved by 1860, relative to 1850 origin status. Alternativespeculationshave argued that out-migrantseither constituted a sort of "permanentfloating proletariat" (and therefore were distinctlyunsuccessfulin termsof occupationaladvancement),or were particularly (and thereforelikely to be among the most successful). As aggressive entrepreneurs an indirecttest of these hypotheses, mobilityand persistence were modeledas joint outcomes influencedby a commonset of "unobserved"variables. The analysis of Indianapolis data shows that the sorting processes of occupational mobility and nonpersistencewere affected by a similar set of observed characteristics, but that unmeasuredvariables exerted no net effects. Beginning in the 1960s, the "new urban historians"utilized federal manuscriptcensus schedules and other archival resources as a basis for investigatingoccupationalstatus and career patterns in 19th-centurycities (e.g., Blumin 1969; Knights 1971; Thernstrom 1973; Glasco 1978; Griffinand Griffin 1978). In general, these studies concluded that the adult male populations were marked by considerable flux both geographically and occupationally-although Grusky's(1986) recent reassessment suggests that the 19thcenturyrate of careermobility was only about half as great as today's rate. However, because the data bases of those studies were constructed by record linkage and could include information only for residents who were present and located during successive enumerations,migrantswere neglected. Speculations about the out-migrants-their subsequent occupational successes, their motivations for leaving, and so forth-typically conceived of the migration as a sorting process that at least tended to be equilibrating
* Direct all correspondenceto Melissa Hardy, of Sociology, FloridaState University, Department Tallahassee, FL 32306-2011. The data file was constructedprimarilyfrom the 1850 and 1860 federal manuscriptcensus schedules of Marion County, IN. I wish to thank Mary Mathisfor her assistancein expandingthe data file and Lawrence Hazelrigg, Charles Nam, Aage Sorensen, and anonymous reviewers for their commentson earlier versions of this paper.
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of wage and price and/or other labor-market differentials. One of the more extreme speculations reasoned that the out-migrants may have constituted a sort of "permanent floating proletariat" (Thernstrom1973, p. 42) who mostly drifted from one city to another. Conversely, the out-migrantsmay have been especially "entrepreneurialin spirit" and among the most successful. More likely these aremuchtoo broadlypainted; characterizations it may well be that, then as today, city differencesin income, employment, and other labor-marketcharacteristicswere not related in any simple way, if at all, to the flows of intercity (or interregional)migration. The importance of the question of 19thcentury city out-migrants (and, correspondingly, in-migrants)is twofold. In addition to the compositional side of the question-who the out-migrantswere, why they left, what their subsequentcareer records were, and so on-it is importantto consider the selection on estimatesof career effects of out-migration mobility among the persisters. If the outmigrants were part of a permanent floating proletariat, estimates based on only the persisters may overstate the amount of mobility experienced by city residentsunless, of course, that "floating proletariat" phenomenonwas sufficiently common that a city's in-migrantswere largely drawnfrom it. Or, if the out-migrants were unusually and among the most successentrepreneurial ful, persister-basedestimates could paint too

American Sociological Review, 1989, Vol. 54 (October:834-843)

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SELECTIONEFFECTSIN OCCUPATIONALMOBILITY
pessimistica pictureof careeradvancements especially if the city's in-migrants, who typically exceeded in number the outmigrants during any given interval, shared that same "spirit"and record of success. The majoraim of this paperis to attemptan answerto that question of "selection effects" by analyzing census data for one city, Indianapolis, Indiana, 1850 to 1860.1 Indianapolis was then making the transitionfrom a small isolated town to a major wholesale and retail commercial center, a transformation made possible by factors associated with the introductionof the railroad. By 1855 Indianapolis had become the railway hub of eight major lines radiating outward from the nation's first union depot to Chicago, Detroit, Cleveland, Cincinnati, Louisville, St. Louis, and points beyond. During the 1850s the populationdoubledin size, and changes in the occupational structure increasingly reflected the importance of, industrial activities in an emerging industrial-commercialcenter. But Indianapoliswas also a gateway to the great expanse of still unsettledareato the west, and to cities just beginning to take shape; it was a city in which the channels for both occupational and geographicmobility were considerable (Hardy 1978). The mid-1800s were a time of rapid and profound social change in many American cities, and Indianapoliswas not unique in these respects. However, relative to more established east-coast cities such as Thernstrom's Boston or Blumin's Philadelphia, the rate of population growth was greater and the transformationfrom a craft-orientedto an industrial job structure was in an earlier and more rapid stage of development.

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approximation"of selection effects of outmigration. One reason is the paucity of informationavailable in the manuscriptcensus schedules. Moreover, as the alternative scenarios depicted above indicate, adjusting mobility estimates for selection effects should attend to the in-migrant as well as the out-migrantpopulation. But historical census dataincludedno retrospective information, and data files constructed from record linkages have typically been "forwardlooking"; only the selection effects of out-migrationcan be addressed. Further, since the basic operation of record linkage is the identification of persisters, out-migrants are defined residually, but the residual category is not homogeneous. It includes cases of mortality, cases of enumerator error, and no doubt at least a few cases of error in the record-linkageprocess. There is no direct way of segregating these various categories in the data file. But the situationis far from hopeless, as we shall see. Nearly 7 of every 10 of the 2,337 adult males enumerated in Indianapolis in 1850 could not be located in the 1860 enumeration or in the 1862 city directory. To anyone not acquaintedwith studies of 19th-century cities, a nonpersistencerate of 69 percentmay seem astoundingly high. It is not. Parkerson's (1982, p. 102) review of published data from record-linkagestudies of 68 separatecommunities shows that in 40 of the communitiesthe 10-year rate of nonpersistence ranged between 60 and 80 percent. The averagerate for all 68 communities was 62 percent. The question is, how much of that 69 percent was actually due to out-migration?Some reasonable estimates can be constructed. First, mortality. Using the Coale-Demeny model life tables, Parkerson estimated a decadal mortalityamong white males, 1850ESTIMATINGOUT-MIGRATION, 60, of nearly 15 percent. But that estimate 1850 TO 1860 was based on a life expectancy at birth (37.3 Since the base population of interest This analysis can yield at best only a "first years). here was aged 16 or older in 1850 (past the high-riskyears of infancy and childhood), 15 1 The data file consists of the entire adult (i.e., percent is surely too high. Barrow's (1980) 16+) male populationof Indianapolisin 1850, as calculationsfor late-centuryIndianapolissugenumeratedin the manuscriptcensus schedules of gest that 5 to 8 percentof the residentsdid not the Seventh U.S. Census. Record linkage to the survive to the next decennial count. Assum1860 enumerationwas by visual inspection of the ing from Barrows' calculations an outside entire set of manuscriptschedules of the Eighth Census. Dodd, Talbott, and Parsons' Indianapolis limit of 10 percent, it seems likely that at City Directory and Business Mirrorfor 1862 was most only one of every seven cases of used as a supplementalsource for record linkage nonpersistencewas due to mortality. The combined effect of enumerator and (though in fewer than 10 percent of the linked cases). record-linkage error can be estimated indi-

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836 rectly with the aid of Parkerson'sstudy of the 1855 New York State Census, which included a question asking all residents how long they had lived in their current community of residence. Parkerson concluded that the record-linkage studies overstated nonpersistence by about two-fifths. Whereas the average rate among the 68 record-linkage studies was 62 percent, it was 44 percent among the New York communities. Furthermore, among communities that experienced rapid growth, the discrepancywas not .62 .44 = .18 but .34. Since the population of Indianapolis doubled during the 1850s, this larger figure will be adopted as a maximum estimate of the extent to which nonpersistence was overstatedin the record-linkagestudy of Indianapolis. But this figure of .34 includes cases of mortalityas well as enumerationand record-linkageerror. Subtractingthe mortality component (no more than .10) leaves an estimate of at least .24 attributable to enumerationand record-linkageerror. Thus, it is reasonable to conclude that no more than 10 percentof the 2,337 adultmales enumerated in 1850 died before the 1860 count, 35 to 40 percent were out-migrants, and the remainder (50 to 55 percent) were

AMERICANSOCIOLOGICAL REVIEW persisters, although as many as two-fifths of these persisters were missed by the census takersor by the record-linkage process. While the data source does not afford means by which to segregate or reclassify these latter cases, that inability is not particularlysignificant to the majoraim of this paper-assessing the effect of "sample selection" on estimates of occupationalmobility-since all sources of selection effect are relevant. It limits what can be said specifically about the selection effects of out-migration, as distinguished from the selection effects of undetectedpersisters. But whether out-migrantor undetected persister, if one or more of these categories of men differed in mobility-related ways from the men who were capturedby the enumeration and record-linkage processes, estimates of career mobility based on only the lattercould be seriously biased. ESTIMATINGA PERSISTENCEMODEL As reported in Table 1, persisters and nonpersisterssignificantly differ in composition on nearly all available measures. The differences are consistent with findings from other studies of 19th-centurycities. Nonper-

Table 1. Comparisonsof Persistersand Nonpersistersin 1850 Rate of Nonpersistence Total Nativity: Indiana OtherU.S. Foreign Race: White Nonwhite Age: 16-19 20-29 30-39 40-49 50+ Mean s.d. Marital: Married Not married Occupation: Professional Major P,M,O Clerk, sales Petty P,M,O Skilled Semiskilled Unskilled Duncans SEI: Mean s.d.
a

Persisters (N= 730) 14% 63 23 97 3 6 31 29 21 13 34.9 11.5 72 28 9 6 8 14 40 8 15 32.0 22.7

Compositona Nonpersisters (N= 1607) 17% 52 30 95 5 11 44 24 12 9 30.9 11.3 46 54 5 2 6 5 48 9 25 24.4 18.0

69% 73% 64 74 68 77 80 76 65 57 60

58 81 55 46 61 44 72 68 78

The compositionalcomparisons(columns 2 and 3) are signficant at the .001 level for all variables except race.

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SELECTIONEFFECTSIN OCCUPATIONALMOBILITY

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Table 2. Rates of Nonpersistence (cell values) by Age, Marital Status, and White-Collar versus Blue-Collar Occupation White-Collar Age 16-29 30+ All ages Married .46 .43 .43 Unmarried .66 .69 .67 Total .59 .47 .51 Married .70 .61 .64 Blue-Collar Unmarried .83 .84 .83 Total .79 .66 .73

sisters were more likely to be unmarried, foreign-born (predominantly German and Irish), younger, and of lower status. In general, men in occupational categories that included property ownership had the lowest rates of nonpersistence, followed by the professionals and then the clerks and salesmen. Blue-collar men, especially the unskilled, had the highest rates. Maritalcomposition is partly confounding of those differences: for example, 84 percent of the major proprietors, managers, and officials, and 74 percent of their "smaller" counterparts, were married, which contrasts with only 36 percent of the clerks and salesmen, 54 percentof the skilled and 46 percentof the semiskilled and unskilled men. However, even after marital status is controlled, some notable occupationaldifferences remain. Unskilled laborers had the highest rates of nonpersistence regardless of marital status, althoughthe rate among single skilled workers was about as high. And while the occupation-specific rates of nonpersistence among single men were generallyin excess of 70 percent, the rate for petty (but not major) proprietors, managers, and officials was a comparativelylow 57 percent.2 The age gradient of nonpersistence rates (column 1, Table 1) approximates the age gradient of rates of internal migration reportedin present-daystudies (e.g., Long and Boertlein 1976)-a high rate among those in their late teens and 20s, followed by rapid diminution of rate. (The small up-tick in nonpersistenceamong the Indianapolis men aged 50 and older is most likely a manifestation of the mortality component of the nonpersister category.) However, as the nonpersistencerates (cell values) in Table 2

show, it was not age so much as maritalstatus that discriminated the persisters from the nonpersisters.Whetheryoung or old, unmarried blue-collar men disappearedin droves. Of course, single unskilledmen were undoubtedly among the most "invisible" to census takers, but it is also highly probable that a great many of these men had actually left Indianapolis. After all, married white-collar men aged 30 or older would have been among the most visible to enumerators, and 43 percent of them were nonpersisters. Since there is good reason to believe that young, single, blue-collar workers were more likely than older, married, white-collar men to move on to anothercity, our estimatedoverall rate of out-migration (35 to 40 percent) probablymeans that at least half of the single blue-collar men were out-migrants. Results from probit estimationsreportedin Table 3 confirm that marital status is a significant and strong net predictorof persistence, as are foreign nativity and white-collar status. Blue-collar men in general were more likely to have out-migratedor to have been overlooked by enumerators,even after taking into account the effects of marital status and foreign nativity. This model provides the means of assessing selection effects of nonpersistence on the probability of career mobility.

SELECTIONEFFECTSIN OCCUPATIONALMOBILITY

Careermobility, 1850 to 1860, is measuredin two ways. First, using Thernstrom's typology, I examine the probabilityof upward or downward mobility across the seven catego2 This difference between petty and major ries previously nominated, assuming ordinalproprietors, managers, and officials is partly ity among them. Because of the floor and compositional:a larger proportionof the "petty" ceiling effects inherent in this definition of than of the "major" category consisted of mobility (see footnote 5), I also examine the distributionof status distances between 1850 as opposed to managersand officials. proprietors

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Table 3. ProbitEstimationof Persistence Model Eq I Constanta - .46 (.09) -5.02 -.16 (.08) -2.12 -.51 (.07) -7.20 -.06 (.07) -.91 .41 (.14) 2.94 .49 (.18) 2.78 .52 (.14) 3.58 .69 (.13) 5.38 .12 (.09) 1.39 .22 (.13) 1.66 Eq 2 - .47 (.07) -6.40 -.17 (.07) -2.29 -.51 (.07) -7.17 -.07 (.07) - 1.02

AMERICAN SOCIOLOGICAL REVIEW To allow for correlationof the processes of occupational mobility and persistence, I estimate a series of two-equation probit models. The first equation specifies the mobility process by assessing the impact of workers' occupational location and demographic characteristicson the likelihood of upward (or downward) mobility relative to occupational stability. The second equation specifies the selection process thatdefined the group of workers whose occupationalmobility was assessed. The two-equation model allows joint estimation of both selection and mobility equations without enforcing the assumption of zero correlation between unmeasurable factors that might have been influencing the likelihood of both persistence and mobility.4

Foreign-born

Not married

Age: 16-29

Professional

MajorP,M,O

Clerks, sales

tion of .93 between 1925 and 1963 prestige rankings. William Form has noted in a personal communicationthat he "found a gross overestimation of skilled workers in the pre-1900 censuses Skilled and almost no way to be certain whether many occupations were 'semiskilled' " (see Form 1985, pp. 92-93). The classification scheme used in the Semiskilled Bureau'stabulationsdid change a numberof times after 1870, as did the amount (and no doubt the standardization of quality) of informationsolicited .008 Duncan SEI by enumerators (see Conk 1978). The present (.002) study is based not on the Bureau's tabulateddata, 5.179 however, but on the manuscriptschedules and the - 1107 - 1080 Log-likelihood specific occupational titles there recorded by 1894 1941 N enumerators.Following Thernstrom's(1973) clasa The reference category for foreign-born is all sification scheme, more than 85 percent of the U.S.-born; for age, 30 years and older; for occupation, cases I coded as "skilled workers"consisted of the unskilled. following occupational titles: carpenter, brickmason, plasterer, painter, blacksmith, carriage or and 1860 occupationsby relying on Hauser's wagonmaker, harnessmaker, saddler, tailor or mapping of occupationaltitles into Duncan's hatter, shoemaker, and printer. Other titles included gunsmith, millwright, foundryman,baker, index.3 silversmith, bookbinder, and jeweler. In any numberof the cases, the accuracy of the nominal 3The use of scales such as Duncan's SEI with attributionmay be doubted, of course. A selfof "carpenter,"for instance, may have historical data has been criticized for alleged attribution insensitivity to long-termchanges in status hierar- been an exaggeration of the respondent's "real" chies. Hauser's analysis argued that, even though skill status of "carpenter'sassistant." With such the use of 20th-century SET scores carries some questions we simply face the limits of the data. 4 This technique expands specification of the bias, use of alternative scales developed by historians on the basis of in-depth analyses of mobility equation by including a latent variable related specific urbansites also raises the questionof bias; that is based on unmeasuredcharacteristics he concludes that "true occupational status in the to persistence. Rho provides an estimate of the twentieth century is about as good an indicatorof correlation between the probabilities of mobility true occupational status in the nineteenth century and persistence, net of the influence of specified as are any of the five-city ratings"(1982, p. 118). independentvariables. Estimatingthe SES models Hauser (1982, p. 122) also estimated a correlation follows the same logic, using lambda to denote a of .88 between occupationalstatus in the mid-19th hazard rate that capturesthe instantaneousprobacentury and prestige in 1925. Blau and Duncan bility of being excluded from the persister (1967, p. 120) had previously reporteda correla- population, conditional on membershipin the risk
Petty P,M,O

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SELECTIONEFFECTSIN OCCUPATIONALMOBILITY
Table 4. ProbitEstimationof UpwardMobility, with and without Selection without selection 1 Constant -.49 (.06) -8.20 2 - 1.63 (.21) -7.63 1.58 (.27) 5.79 1.01 (.23) 4.36 1.47 (.29) 5.08 1.73 (.25) 6.84 3 - 3.09 (.53) -5.80 1.61 (.28) 5.83 .99 (.24) 4.21 1.58 (.31) 5.15 1.79 (.27) 6.53 .95 (.41) 2.33 -.15 (.16) -.91 .78 (.30) 2.57 .47 (.30) 1.55 -300 -264 -256 - 1285 .94 (.08) 12.18 -1260 .47 (.26) 1.80 4 - 1.37 (.06) -24.46 with selection 5 -2.07 (.23) -9.10 1.58 (.28) 5.69 .91 (.25) 3.63 1.35 (.33) 4.08 1.50 (.35) 4.31 6

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-3.10 (.68) -4.53 1.61 (.28) 5.69 .99 (.25) 3.97 1.58 (.32) 4.97 1.79 (.30) 5.99 .95 (.40) 2.34 -.15 (.17) -.88 .78 (.35) 2.23 .46 (.34) 1.38 - 1253 .00 (.40) .00

Petty P,M,O

Skilled

Semiskilled

Unskilled

Race: White

Foreign-born

Age: 16-29

30-49

Log-likelihood Rho

Probit estimationsof models predictingthe probabilityof upwardand downwardmobility are reportedin Tables 4 and 5, respectively.5 In each table, equations 1-3 describe models
pool; the coefficient of lambda estimates the association of the two processes, net of specified factors. 5 Since none of the men in the top two occupationalcategories was upwardlymobile (for professionalsthis was by definition; for the major proprietors,managers, and officials it was probably an effect of career tracking and therefore virtuallydefinitional),the top threecategorieswere collapsed into one reference category. For downward mobility the unskilled and semiskilled categories were collapsed into a reference category. Also, initial specification of the models included marital status, but it proved to be excessively collinear with other variables (especially age) and was thereforedeleted.

without adjustment for selection effects. Equation 1 fits only a constant, showing the probabilityof mobility (upwardor downward) relative to immobility. Thus, on average the relative probability of career advancement was .31 (associated with a Z-value of -.49), while the relativeprobabilityof careerdecline was about half that large, at .16 (i.e., a Z-value of -1.01). Equation 2 assesses the probabilityof upward or downward mobility for specific occupationalcategories; equation 3 adds demographicvariables to the model. These results are straightforward,but four specific findings can be noted. First, although race was not a significant predictor of persistence, white men (95 percent of the 1850 total) were more likely upwardly mobile, net of other factors. Second, foreign nativity predicted persistence but not mobility. Third, whereasmaritalstatuswas a strong

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AMERICAN SOCIOLOGICAL REVIEW

Table 5. ProbitEstimationof DownwardMobility, with and without Selection without selection 1 Constant -1.01 (.08) -13.24 2 -1.68 (.27) -6.26 .83 (.34) 2.46 .42 (.41) 1.02 1.14 (.35) 3.25 1.44 (.33) 4.42 .38 (.30) 1.26 3 - 1.23 (.45) -2.70 .83 (.40) 2.09 .51 (.46) 1.10 1.14 (.41) 2.79 1.46 (.40) 3.85 .40 (.36) 1.10 - .37 (.53) -.71 -.39 (.27) -1.46 -.21 (.18) - 1.14 -170 -152 -150 -1006 - .65 (.13) -4.95 -992 .41 (.36) 1.14 4 -.09 (.24) - .38 with selection 5 -2.22 (.44) -5.07 .99 (.33) 2.96 .64 (.43) 1.50 1.25 (.34) 3.71 1.58 (.32) 5.00 .42 (.29) 1.46 6 - 1.87 (.56) - 3.34 1.05 (.39) 2.68 .79 (.49) 1.62 1.30 (.39) 3.37 1.65 (.36) 4.52 .50 (.36) 1.46 - .35 (.52) -.68 -.43 (.26) -1.65 -.12 (.20) -.62 -989 .45 (.40) 1.14

Professional

MajorP,M,O

Clerks, sales

Petty P,M,O

Skilled

Race: White

Foreign-born

Age: 50 +

Log-likelihood Rho

predictor of persistence, it did not have separatelyestimable net effects on mobility. Fourth, while age had no net effects in the model of persistence, younger men (16-29) were more likely upwardly mobile, net of other factors.6 Such conclusions are hardly novel (cf. the previously cited studies). The question of centralinterest, however, turnson the characteristics or dispositions of workers that could not be specified in either the persistence or

the mobility equations and whether unmeasured traits that increased the probability of persistence also increased (or decreased) the probability of career mobility. If the outmigrants, for example, and perhaps as well those overlooked by enumerators,were characterized by some unmeasured personality traits associated with career advancement (e.g., "entrepreneurial spirit"), the twoequationestimationsshould show this interrelatedness as a negative correlation (rho) between the errorterms of the persistenceand 6 Because downwardmobility was less frequent mobility equations. If, however, it is the than upward mobility, it was not possible to persisters who possess traits conducive to discriminate among the three age-groups. The careeradvancement,rho should be positive in contrastbetween young and middle-aged workers the case of upward mobility and negative in (a combined reference group) and older workers was maintainedto see whetherold age (relative to the case of downward mobility. Equation 4 the age structureof the time) increaseda worker's assesses the impact of unmeasured factors that increase the likelihood of persistence on vulnerabilityto downwardmobility.

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SELECTIONEFFECTSIN OCCUPATIONALMOBILITY the probabilityof careermobility. For upward mobility the value of rho is large, positive, and clearly significant; that is, unmeasured factors associated with career advancement also increased the probabilityof persistence. Moreover, the estimate for the constant is a larger negative number than in equation 1; that is, the probabilityof careeradvancement, net of unmeasuredfactors related to persistence, was very small (only .09). The results for downward mobility correspond: unmeasured traits that decreased the risk of nonpersistencewere associated with a lower risk of downwardmobility. Equations 5 and 6 successively introduce the occupational categories and the demographic variables. As a result, the value of rho is no longer significantly different from zero. What's more, the parameterestimates of equations 5 and 6 are virtually identical to those of equations 2 and 3, for both upward and downwardmobility. In sum, if we think of career mobility as a process that selects workers with characteristicsfavorable to job performanceor productivity,we can question whetherworkerspossessing these traitswere, on the whole, more likely to remain in Indianapolis during this 10-year period, or more likely to have been lost to outmigration, enumerator error, or mortality. The evidence favors the persisters, showing

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that unmeasuredfactors related to persistence were positively related to the likelihood of upward mobility and negatively related to downward mobility, but that these factors, which were distinct from the effects of occupationaland demographiccharacteristics in predicting persistence, were mediated through (or at least correlated with) origin occupation and demographictraits in predicting mobility. Since collapsing all nondiagonal elements of the mobility table into two categories (upward or downward mobility) neglects informationon within-categorydifferences, I also estimated models using Duncan's index to assess selection effects on the status distance traversedthrough upward or downward mobility. Average improvementin job status was 3.8 points; the positive value is consistent with the predominanceof upward over downward mobility, but the distributional characteristicsof the distance measure suggest incremental rather than dramatic changes in job statusfor workers, on average. Results of this analysis (Table 6) correspond to those of Table 5. The positive lambdacoefficient in equation3 indicates that unmeasured worker characteristics that increased the probability of persistence also predict a gain in status during the 10-year period. However, the estimate is significant

Table 6. OLS Estimationof Duncan's Index with and without Selection without selection 1 Constant 11.04 (1.12) 9.88 .78 (.03) 27.68 2 4.16 (3.68) 1.13 .77 (.03) 25.50 8.17 (3.76) 2.18 -1.00 (1.62) -.62 - 1.70 (1.43) -1.19 5.93 (3.45) 1.72 .58 .58 .58 1 3.07 (4.78) .64 .82 (.04) 21.72 with selection 2 -2.89 (6.03) - .48 .80 (.04) 20.71 8.13 (3.73) 2.18 -1.04 (1.61) -.65 -1.19 (1.46) -.81 5.20 (3.54) 1.47 .58

Duncan 1850

Race

Foreign-born

Older

lambda

R2

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842 only by a one-tailedtest (.05 level), and once the additional variables are specified (i.e., race),7 the coefficient for lambda is further reducedin size and precision. DISCUSSION Researchershave speculated that, because of compositional differences between persisters and nonpersisters on traits relevant to the career-mobility process, studies based only on persistersyield biased estimates of mobility. However, results of the present study leave little room for doubtingthe mobility estimates on grounds of selectivity bias. Once the likelihood of mobility was conditioned on demographic traits, the two-equation estimates converged with the single-equation estimates, and the error correlation across equationsconverged to zero. The general theoretical point is simple. Selectivity on an identifiable factor does not in itself necessarily entail bias in subpopulation estimates; the nature of the selection process must be considered. Nonrandom explicit selection, as in exclusion of observations because of a thresholdon the dependent variable, leads to biased and inconsistent regression estimates. But when selectivity is incidental, as in this study, it is difficult to predict the correlation between disturbances of the selection equation and those of the "primary"equation-unless one can identify factors that have been omitted from both equations and that are orthogonal to the specified regressands(Berk 1983). Both career mobility and nonpersistence (out-migration as well as enumerator error and mortality) are selection processes; the question of interest is whether the processes operatedby the same or by different criteria. Thernstrom's hypothesis of a "permanent floating proletariat" implies the processes were regulated by different criteria: less skilled workers who had little chance of advancementwandered from place to place, in a futile searchfor betteropportunities.This thesis, buttressedby evidence of high rates of blue-collar nonpersistence, seems to suggest that whereas a city's working class fit
7Equation 4 provides further support for the race effect detected in Table 5. Net of origin status, the 1860 SES of white workers averaged 8 points higher than that of black workers.

AMERICAN SOCIOLOGICAL REVIEW Schumpeter's (1955, pp. 127-29) general description of "class"-"a hotel or an omnibus, always full, but always of different people"-this was partly because of the existence of a large, regionally based contingent of mostly permanentdrifters. However, the pessimism of Thernstrom's speculation aboutthe prospectsof migratingworkersmay not have been warranted.At least the present study gives reason to doubt it. Since nonpersisterstended to be younger and of lower status-traits associated with career advancement-support for the hypothesis of a permanentfloating proletariat would have to come from characteristicsof persistence that were not included either in Thernstrom'sdata or in mine. But the models estimatedhere allowed for mobility effects of unmeasured as well as measured traits. In other words, the selection processes of persistence and mobility were modeled as joint outcomes produced partly by common unmeasured variables. The results gave no indication of net effects of any unmeasured traits. In short, there seems to have been nothing distinctive about the nonpersisters that entailed for them a competitive disadvantage in chances of career mobility. That the nonpersisters were numerous and usually young, unmarried, and of lower status is indisputable. But taken as a whole they fit Schumpeter's "omnibus" depiction no less than did the working-class persisters of Indianapolis. Indeed, it seems likely that the out-migrants, rather than being permanent membersof a floating proletariat(or lumpenproletariat),settled elsewhere, probablyto the west, and subsequently experienced career trajectoriesthat, on the whole, mirroredthose of their counterpartswho remained in Indianapolis. The latter point is speculative, of course. It is almost impossible to track out-migrantsof l9th-century cities, but relevant evidence could be gained indirectly by comparinga city's in-migrantsto its nonpersisters in terms of demographiccomposition and to the persistersin terms of mobility. It would also be useful to replicate the present analysis with data from one or more 19th-centurycities differing from Indianapolis in size, age, and stage of economic development in order to determine whether the results reportedhere are generalizable. MELISSAA. HARDY is Associate Professor of Sociology and ResearchAssociate with the

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SELECTIONEFFECTSIN OCCUPATIONALMOBILITY Instituteon Aging at FloridaState University. In addition to expanding her study of historical patterns of occupational mobility, she continues her researchon retirement,the changing structuresof opportunityand constraint faced by older workers, patterns of individualdecision making, and questions of equity. intergenerational
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Hardy, Melissa A. 1978. "OccupationalMobility and Nativity-Ethnicity in Indianapolis, 185060." Social Forces 57:205-21. Hauser, Robert M. 1982. "OccupationalStatus in the Nineteenth and Twentieth Centuries." Historical Methods 15:111-26. Knights, Peter R. 1971. The Plain People of Boston, 1830-1860. New York: Oxford University Press. Long, Larry H. and Celia G. Boertlein. 1976. "The Geographical Mobility of Americans." Current Population Reports, Series P-23, no. 64. Washington,DC: U.S. GovernmentPrinting
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Mare, Robert D., Christopher Winship, and WarrenN. Kubitschek. 1984. "The Age Pattern of Employment." American Journal of Sociology 90:326-58. Parkerson,Donald H. 1982. "How Mobile Were Nineteenth-Century Americans?" Historical Methods 15:99-109. Schumpeter,Joseph. 1955. Imperialismand Social Classes. New York: Meridian. Thernstrom, Stephan. 1973. The Other Bostonians. Cambridge:HarvardUniversity Press. U.S. Bureau of Census. 1980. "Geographical Mobility: March 1975 to March 1979." Current Population Reports, Series P-20, no. 353. Washington, DC: U.S. Government Printing
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