I had no idea this beard style had such a long history. I kind of thought it was a modern invention, to tell you the truth. It's amazing how things come and go out of fashion.
I also think it's funny that facial hair isn't considered "professional." I feel like as long as your facial hair is neat and trimmed and there aren't crumbs in it, it should be fine for work.
I know actually that some business still don't consider facial hair professional. A friend of mine used to work for a big company and they had a lot of rules about facial hair in their office dress code.