In my experience, Austrians still
don't use checks. They use what's called a Zahlschein
, which is something like a money order.
In the nineteenth century, I doubt that many people in the US were getting paid by check, let alone in Austria. The typical procedure for hourly employees was to get paid every week in cash. I imagine a journalist who was getting paid by the article (or column inch or word or whatever) would get paid in cash as well, although it might not be weekly.
EDIT: so, in other words, I agree with Walter