5 Celebrities You Didn’t Know Were Once Electricians


When you think of electricians, you probably envision someone in a hard hat with a tool belt, crawling through attics and wiring up homes. But I bet you didn’t know that some of the world’s most famous faces have a surprising past rooted in this career. And for many of these celebrities, the skills they gained through working as electricians ended up being valuable when they moved on to the careers that they’re more commonly known for today. 

I took some time to put together a list of five celebrities who once worked in the electrical field. I’m sure there are more, but these are the handful that surprised me the most, and I’m willing to bet they’ll surprise you too.

Elvis Presley

Before he was swiveling his hips and making my grandmother swoon, Elvis Presley was handling electrical circuits. The King of Rock ‘n’ Roll started his working life as an electrician’s apprentice at Crown Electric in Memphis. While it’s hard to imagine him in a hard hat, Presley was learning the ins and outs of electrical work while studying to be an apprentice and driving the company van. His time in the electrical field didn’t last long, but it’s fun to think about how the world might have been different if Elvis had stuck with this career in the electrical world.  

George Harrison 

Before becoming a famous guitarist for the Beatles, George Harrison worked as an apprentice electrician at Blacklers store. Harrison once told reporters that he “kept blowing things up, so I got dumped.” At the time of his apprenticeship, Harrison played with a band called The Quarrymen, which later became the Beatles.  While he never completed his apprenticeship, Harrison’s early technical skills undoubtedly contributed to his knack for tinkering with guitars and sound equipment.  

Rowan Atkinson 

Rowan Atkinson, best known for his hilarious character Mr. Bean, initially sparked his interest in comedy while studying electrical engineering at Newcastle University. Atkinson’s path to comedy was a twist of fate; he initially enrolled in a master’s degree program at The Queen's College, Oxford, aiming to become an electrical engineer. However, his time at university also ignited his passion for acting and comedy, which ultimately led him to switch career paths. 

Albert Einstein 

While Albert Einstein is universally known for his contributions to theoretical physics, his early career involved practical electrical work. In his youth, Einstein worked as an assistant in a Swiss patent office, evaluating various inventions. Among his many responsibilities, he often reviewed patents related to electrical devices, which required a deep understanding of electrical engineering. Some say that this hands-on experience with electrical systems likely influenced his theoretical work, providing a practical foundation for his groundbreaking theories in physics.  

Alfred Hitchcock

Before becoming one of the world’s most influential film directors, Alfred Hitchcock worked briefly as an electrician at W.T. Henley’s Telegraph Works. He was a member of the Henley’s sales department, eventually transitioning to the advertising department. Hitchcock’s biographer, Patrick McGilligan, claims that this job was the perfect preparation for a career in film, as he learned to love detailed planning and note-taking – habits that would serve him well as a director. From there, Hitchcock trained as a technical clerk and copywriter before officially entering the film industry in 1919 as a title card designer.   

Benjamin Franklin

Many know Ben Franklin as “The First American”, a founding father and the face on the $100 bill, but he was also possibly one of the first electricians in history. At 8 years old, his father placed him in the Boston Grammar School, though he was pulled out shortly after to work in the family business. He continued to learn on his own and was fascinated by electricity. From this passion, he became an inventor and experimenter who helped the world understand what electricity was and how it worked. He was famous for experimenting with flying kites in lightning storms, the result of which led to the use of lightning rods and grounding. 


So, the next time you flip a switch or plug in your phone charger, take a moment to appreciate the humble electrician. Who knows, the person fixing your wiring today might just be the next big star of tomorrow! Whether it’s the King of Rock ‘n’ Roll or the genius behind the theory of relativity, the world of electricity has illuminated the paths of many who went on to change the world in surprising and spectacular ways. 

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