Wheeler & Wilson No. 8 Sewing Machine Display Model / Salesman Sample / Patent Model This is the real deal. This genuine miniature Salesman sample sewing machine is very graphic and looks great.
I have been at this going on 40 years now, and use to specialize in toy and child size sewing machines, as well as patent models of
sewing machines. In all that time I have never seen or heard of another example of this special little sewing machine. I do not use the term rare
often, but this tiny salesman sample Wheeler & Wilson # 8 sewing machine fits the bill.
After having discussed it with a few other knowledgeable folks I will tell you what I think. Given the size, with no dimension
much over 12", it could be a patent model. The patent could be for something like the
wood folding table extensions on two sides of the top, an unusual feature in its own right.
Or it could be for something having to do with the treadle base. Either are
possibilities, but do not explain the
sewing machine, and its details, or lack of them.
Another possibility is that it is a patent model of the sewing machine itself. That it is a one of kind, as patent models were,
and no others are out and about would help that argument. Also, it is very close to the right size with no dimension
much over 12". One could make arguments for or against that idea, but that does not seem
quite right given the construction details of the machine, and other factors.
One would also think if it was a typical salesman sample it
would be larger and designed to actually work. Meaning that while the table
folds as it should, and the treadle works as it should, and the
moving parts of the machine move and it seems to be working when
operated, the fact is that there are no moving parts under the machine involved with the
needle, or provisions for actually making a stitch.
The machine looks like a dressed up exact miniature copy of the Wheeler & Wilson No.8 sewing machine that was first
introduced in 1876. One would think if it was a typical salesman sample or display model
for retail shops that others would be known. None are.
I believe it is a limited production promotional / sample / display model
made by Wheeler & Wilson of the "New" No. 8 Wheeler & Wilson sewing machine, to be displayed or
exhibited at events like Expos, Worlds Fairs, or Trade Shows during the centennial celebrations. The
No. 8 Wheeler & Wilson was introduced in 1876 and that time frame would fit
this idea. That would also explain the relative scarcity of no others known. Wheeler and Wilson would only need one,
two or a few, for events like that. I should note it carries a brass
inscribed Wheeler & Wilson logo plaque inset in the base plate. (see pics)
Another aspect or consideration is the
construction of the machine and choice of materials and finish.
The body has an unusual silver plated like finish. The main cross arm is
decorated and polished brass. These cosmetic embellishments would lend weight to the Expo display
idea. Such fine finish attributes would certainly grab one's attention as the
crowds strolled by the Wheeler & Wilson display booth.
This miniature sewing machine is a wonderful and historically important piece.
An opportunity not likely to repeat itself.
J. D. Adams Salesman Sample Road Grader This is the
real deal. It is very graphic and looks great. This engineering company hailed from Indianapolis IN. This
is a very complicated piece of machinery. I am not totally sure, but was told there are some missing pieces
/ springs to hold the lower grader portion at different angles. Look at all the pics to see all the different gear
boxes, adjusters, fittings and more that this has. This rare & desirable c. 1910 salesman's sample measures
approx. 10.25" H x 8.5" W x 22.5" L.
The operator would stand on the grate at the rear and have to
control all the different wheels and levers as the grader was being pulled along. Nice!!
T. Beatty Patent Model Washing
/ Churning Machine This
1807 patent model is one of the earliest US Patent Models known to exist. The patent
was issued to a Thomas Beatty in 1807.
Patent Models of inventors ideas became a requirement by an act of
Congress in 1790. Note that the tag says "no number". Models like this are referred to
as X models and were called off by the inventors name rather than a number prior
They are very hard to research or find reference to on the internet or in the Patent Office
records. They were assigned numbers later on and I believe this ones number is
X 754. The patent can not be brought up with Google or at the PO site.
and after the first Patent Office fire, all patent models were assigned numbers. The
1836 Patent Office fire destroyed all the previous models
that had been submitted prior to that date. Approximately 10,000 patents
had been granted between 1790 and 1835. Only about 1/4 were recovered or
restored after the fire. Congress appropriated funds to have the more
important models rebuilt after the
initial 1836 fire and that is what we have here. The patent tag is original
and held in place with the lead lock tag used by the American Patent Models Inc.
back in the 30's.; They were one of several owners of the patent models
after the government disposed of the entire patent model inventory or collection
at auction back in 1925.
Histories of Patent Models can be found at several different internet sites. I have a page
that briefly explains the history here
https://www.antiqbuyer.com/Patent_Models.html. There is
much more info to be found at Wikipedia and at other sites.
This is a great model
and an idea ahead of it time. Most washing machines worked on the idea of the
operator or user activating a dasher, or agitator in order to perform the
washing task at
hand. Beatty's idea flipped this idea, and the washing machine dasher or agitator was
fixed and the user would instead move or swing the container back and forth to perform
the washing, churning, and scouring task. An important piece of Americana,
American History and Yankee ingenuity all wrapped into one.
1858 James McVicker Patent Model Washing Machine This
1858 patent model washing machine could easily win a prize for whacky idea of
the year, or century for that matter. The patent is for a washing machine based on a
wheel barrow like design. The patent issued to a James McVicker of Mount Morris PA.
The patent number is 19788 and comes up with a Google
Mr McVicker must have had to push a wheelbarrow around
in a previous occupation, and was now tasked with the washing chores around
the homestead. Or perhaps he had heard or read about the great success
Studebaker was having making wheel barrows in California gold country and
thought he could cash in using the design and offering a new mobile wash
service for the boys. What other logic could there be for such a silly looking idea.
It is kind of a hard patent to read and understand.
If I am reading it right, and in looking inside, it seems you were not supposed to operate the washer / wheelbarrow while moving the entire
machine about the yard. I think you were to get it in place, set the side
levers to raise the front wheel off the ground, and then operate the washer
mechanism by hand where upon the wheel would become a flywheel to help with
the back and forth washing or agitator action. He goes into some detail
explaining how the wooden spring design seen at the back end of the model
would assist in the operation as well. As I first said, WHACKY.
The model measures
approx. 12" end to end and stands a bit over 6" tall. It is primarily
made of a few different types of hard and soft woods with nicely done chamfers and carved
aspects or details. A one of a kind.;
An important piece of Americana,
American History and Yankee ingenuity all wrapped into one.