It wasn’t just doctors and lawyers who made the Gladstone Bag popular when it first appeared in the nineteenth century. In fact many workmen also found the roomy Gladstone Bag just perfect for carrying tools and work manuals. Electricians and plumbers, for example, also apprentices in various trades, viewed the Gladstone Bag as the perfect way to transport tools, sometimes very big and dirty, also extremely heavy, between jobs and travelling to work each morning and back home at night.
For long distance travelling, on trains and ships, for example, the Gladstone Bag presented a much more elegant impression than flat and boring suitcases, as well as being wider than most suitcases and so easier for travellers to store larger items. The flat base of the Gladstone Bag was, and still is perfect for transporting delicate items in an upright position and to avoid them falling about and breaking in suitcases usually made from thin flexible leather.
Another benefit of the Gladstone Bag over conventional suitcases was the opportunity for two people to transport personal items in one bag, each person taking one compartment each in the Gladstone Bag.