Elias Howe – The Birth Of The Sewing Machine

Elias Howe, July 19, 1819 – October 3rd, 1867

On September 10th, 1846 Elias Howe was awarded patent 4750 for his lockstitch sewing machine, and although others had conceived of certain elements, he combined the needle (with the eye at the tip), the shuttle, and automatic feed mechanism into a working machine.

Although Howe had secured a patent he struggled to find backing to put the machine into production, and then this fellow named Isaac Singer started producing a copy of his machine (albeit with some improvements), which led to 5 years of litigation against Singer, which Howe won.

Howe then received royalties from Singer and other manufacturers, which led to him becoming one of the richest men on earth, after Isaac Singer.

Howe died in 1867 at the age of 46, he had established The Howe Machine Company in Bridgeport, Connecticut by this time but never saw the brilliant machines which were then produced under his name.

Elias Howe died as a multi millionaire, like Isaac Singer.

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