Written by: Kate Becker

For the last few years, it’s never been easier to find a good moving company. The main reason for this is simple – the moving business has grown so much that it covers almost every city in the USA. However, it has not always been like that. Moving wasn’t always a job for highly-skilled professionals. 100 years ago, you couldn’t just take a few phone calls and organize your move in a matter of hours. Luckily, searching for the moving company is way easier these days, since you can find many moving companies reviews online. The history of movers has many interesting stories to tell, so let’s see how it all began.

The history of movers – beginnings

Moving business was actually established in the USA by the newcomers and colonists. While so many people were moving to the continent, this seems to be logical. Before the first moving company existed, people used to move their belongings by themselves. Immigrants who first came to North America used to move with the help of covered wagons. These wagons were the first transportation vehicles for the move. Although this type of traveling doesn’t even remind us of the modern moving company, it had much to do with the history of movers. relocation from one coast to another used to last for a couple of weeks, so moving in groups was the best choice people had.

car wagon

In the 19th century, people used to move their belongings by themselves.

Packing belongings into more than one covered wagon was the smartest way to save space and save some strength and time. Besides pacing their belongings together, American newcomers used to help each other during the moving trip. Surviving the unknown territory was possible by sticking to each other and traveling in a group.

The beginnings of a moving business

How it all started

The first moving companies were established at the end of 19th century. In that time, the development of the railroads in entire North America was the key factor for the rise of the moving business. When the corporate transportation was possible, groups of people were gathering to perform smaller, organized moves. Around 1850, the first moving companies started offering professional relocation services. Both local moving and long distance moving were possible, so moving companies could earn money from individual and group relocations. At the same time, the first storage facilities were created and the moving business started thriving.

The first shipment

When it comes to transportation, the first things the moving companies were transporting were animals. This was not a surprise if you keep in mind how people use to earn for a living in that time. Buying and selling animals was the main source of income for many people, so the transportation companies used this as the opportunity to expand the business.

Local and long distance moving companies

The transportation process during the first few decades of the 20th century wasn’t as easy as it is today. Some long-distance shipments used to take few weeks, even more than a month. The trains could only travel on the main railroads, so movers needed to organize long-distance relocations in few stages. First, they packed all the goods into wagon cars and ship them to the warehouse nearest to the local train station. The next step was unloading the goods into the train, which was a job for another local moving company. In the end, the third group of movers waited at the final destination to unload and deliver the shipment. This sort of moving organization reached its peak during the World War I.

The moving industry during the World Wars I and II

The development of the technology and motor vehicles affected the way people were moving their belongings. People paved many paths and roads, allowing movers to ship faster to the wanted destination. Since not many people could afford a motor vehicle, moving in a short period of time was a luxury. However, relocation of households was much cheaper via a motor-van. The history of movers was influenced by Ward B. Hiner, who was one of the first men in the moving business. He was the one behind the idea of moving via motor-vans.


The development of the railroads in entire North America was the key factor for the rise of the moving business

The use of motor-vans become more popular between the two world wars. The relocation process became much less complicated. Still, motor-van was cost efficient for the moving companies way more than for their customers. During the World War II, the moving process was slowing down because of many delays of the shipments. However, after 1945, the business was getting back on track since many soldiers were coming back home. This is the time when some of the oldest moving companies were established, and some of them are still working today.

The modern moving industry

During the history of movers, the moving business developed and become more popular with both business owners and residents. Professional movers added regulations and safety measures to their moving service, in order to satisfy different customers’ needs. With the rise of the internet and the fast transfer of information and advertisements, many new companies started their business in the USA. Today, every state in North America has dozens of local and long distance moving services. It has never been easier to find a moving company that suits your needs. If you need a moving service last minute, few clicks and one phone call away.

modern moving history

Finding a good moving company is much easier these days.

If you are looking for a professional moving company, make sure to book one on time. For both residential and business moving, moving companies can offer you different moving quotes. Keep in mind that moving scams are not as rare as one might think. So, take time to find a reliable moving company that will relocate your belongings in a professional manner.