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"antique" sewing machine, or any other sewing machine with a serial number in the 6 or 7 digit range, is considered late and relatively common.The machine may date from 1880, and does have some value, but it would almost always be as a decorator item and not as a collectible with a steady demand and known value from sewing machine collectors.Any sewing machine with a serial # above 50,000 would be considered "Late" and relatively common.In other words, your Wheeler & Wilson #9, White, Singer, Domestic, Wilcox & Gibbs, etc.Instead of a circular shuttle movement and a horizontally angled needle, the Singer machine used a straight needle that worked vertically.This made it comparatively easy to use and inexpensive to produce, and "Singer" rapidly became a household name in sewing.
To see many other examples of early sewing machines go to my Past Sales Archives on our sister website Those are the type and style sewing machines we seek. The simple fact that your sewing machine is old does not necessarily mean it is desirable or valuable to a collector.The Wheeler and Wilson company was the largest manufacturer of sewing machines in the 1850s and the 1860s. In 1861, the company introduced the famous glass presser foot, patented on March 5 of that year by J. The glass allowed the seamstress to observe the stitching and to produce very close-edge stitching. Wilson; from 1852 to 1856 it was the Wheeler, Wilson & Co., Watertown, Connecticut; and from 1856 to 1876, it was Wheeler & Wilson Mfg. The style of the head changed very little during these years (see figs. Both a table style with iron legs and a cabinet model were made: the head was usually mounted to stitch from left to right. The presser foot was made of metal but shaped like an open into which was slid a small glass plate, with a hole for the needle descent. 8 machine was introduced and a new series of serial numbers was initiated.Although they are often found at garage sales, flea markets, and estate sales with very low price tags, there are several models of antique Singer sewing machines that are highly sought after by collectors.These beautiful pieces of sewing history are popular with antiques collectors and sewing enthusiasts alike.
Like many other American manufacturers the company soon opened offices in London to manage its export sales to Europe.