I spotted this lovely sculpture in a nearby city.
A lamplighter, historically, was an employee of a town who lit street lights.
Lights were lit each evening, generally by means of a wick on a long pole. At dawn, they would return to put them out using a small hook on the same pole. Early street lights were generally candles, oil, and similar consumable liquid or solid lighting sources with wicks.
Another lamplighter duty was to carry a ladder and renew the candles, oil, or gas mantles.
In some communities, lamplighters served in a role akin to a town watchman; in others, it may have been seen as little more than a sinecure.
In the 19th century gas lights became the dominant form of street lighting. Early gaslights required lamplighters, but eventually systems were developed which allowed the lights to operate automatically.