Happy Monday! Already off to a fun-filled week of sewing here in my studio. The International Quilt Market is coming up in a couple weeks and i've been working away on a quilt to bring. This one will feature my upcoming fabric line for Moda called, Daydream. Here's a peek:
|Copyright American Society of Mechanical Engineers|
That's a drawing of the first U.S. lockstitch sewing machine that was patented by this man (or rather, a statue of him) in our hometown, Bridgeport, Connecticut.
|Photo from CT Monuments.net|
"Elias Howe, Jr., (1819 – 1867) obtained a patent for the first practical sewing machine in 1845. In 1865, Howe opened a sewing machine factory on the Pequonnock River in eastern Bridgeport, where as many as 400 machines were manufactured a day." -Excerpt from Images of America: Bridgeport on the Sound by Bruce Williams and Mary K. Witkowski, Arcadia Publishing.
Though Elias Howe, Jr. was not the first to invent the sewing machine, he refined the machinery significantly. He was the one who put the eye of the needle at the point (instead of at the back like on hand sewing needles). And i'd have to say my favorite part of his contribution is the automatic feed. Without that, i'd never get this quilt done in time for quilt market!
Captain’s Cove Seaport in the Black Rock section of Bridgeport. It’s a marvelously unique place that Bruce’s dad, Kaye Williams, envisioned, while he was a lobsterman out of Black Rock Harbor, and then built piece by piece. A good chunk of the Story of Kaye Williams book is about this. Some other funny stories on Kaye and his adventures were in a Connecticut Post article from last year, just a couple days before Hurricane Sandy hit in October: Captain's Cove founder no stranger to storms.
This page came from a circa 1870 history of the State of Connecticut. My parents happened to give us a few already-separated pages from the old book last December. And, from the same book, a close-up of a map of Bridgeport showing the multi-block “E. Howe” plant and facilities around Noble St. and Howe St.
Today, the locale is...a parking lot. Sad! But you'll notice in the lower right corner that Howe St. is still there.
|Photo from Google Maps|
For more on Elias Howe, Jr., check out:
• Alex I. Askeroff’s history of Howe . Points out a funny fact that at end of the Beatles film, Help, there is a dedication to Elias Howe, Jr.
• The American Society of Mechanical Engineers’ brief bio of Howe