Dont know if this is too off topic, but may be of interest.
My Grandmother passed away this spring, and among her possessions was a Standard Sewing Machine Co. stand. There was a note attached to it saying that her Mother (a seamstress) had purchased it used in 1912 when they were living in downtown Detroit. My Great-Great Grandfather was a mold maker for Ford (although he didnt work for the company until 1928)
I remember this table being on my grandparents porch when i was a child. Back then it had its original wood top with drawers. When i received it the original wood was long gone, and it was quite rusty.
I sand blasted the iron, replaced the bearings so it would operate (its a fun conversation piece) I also made a new wooden "connecting rod" based off of photos i have seen of these tables online. Also made a glass top for it. Someday if my woodworking skills get better i hope to re-create the very nice wooden top that was on it.
Originally i would guess that this was dipped black, but as a child i remember it being white, so i kept it white.
It is now on my screened in porch, hopefully ready for another century!
A little OT, but I can relate. Nice job on preserving the irons and your family memories.
Yet another hobby of mine is working on and resurrecting old sewing machines. I probably have over 50 of them. Pretty sure I have a Standard too. I was attracted to them because of their fascinating mechanical design and quality. I have machines from the 1860s through the 1940s.
I have 2 singer treadle machines and one that has a modern head converted to work on a white base. I love those old machines
My parents have an old Singer that was cosmetically restored to use as an accent table in the late eighties. I remember as a kid I'd work the treadle as hard as I could to see how fast it would go and get in trouble just about every time. Even if I denied it, that telltale "ka-tunk-ka-tunk-ka-tunk" as it coasted down always gave me away.
Believe it or not in Thailand you can buy brand new treadle machines.
They work surprisingly well. I have 9 or 10 treadle machines now that are in complete working order and sew great. Yet another hobby of mine is Civil War reenacting. Here is a Golden Star machine made in 1909 sewing on an insignia.
My Great Grandmother's Matron machine is in our living room.
I oiled the tar out that poor thing when I was a little boy.
That connecting rod looks fantastic in the white framework!
Along with the Edison Diamond Disk I have sitting next to it my Great Uncles Singer cobbler machine. Cool machine, if you want to sew a circle you just turn the needle head. It rotates 360 deg. Without changing the treadle direction you can rotate it and sew back over where stitched. I do use it some times.
My Grandmother preferred her treadle machine, she told me she "could control it better."
Mark - I have one of the those cobbler machines too - a Singer 29-4. I refurbished it last year, great for leather and heavy canvas.
I have my grandmother's Singer treadle machine. I remember her sewing on it when I was a kid. Unfortunately, in her later years, it just became a plant stand and the cover was ruined by water. The veneer is missing in a huge round spot revealing the wood underneath. It was made like a butchers block, tiny blocks of wood of varying size glued together. I don't know if that was supposed to be more stable, or just a way to use scrap wood, or both. At any rate, it's pretty much beyond repair on that upper side. Underneath, it's not so bad, so if you have it opened up in sewing mode, it's not so bad. The machine works, although I'm not too skilled in its use. I traced the serial number to 1909. My grandmother was born in 1913?, so obviously, she was not the original owner. My Mom says she doesn't know where it came from. Her Mom had had it since she could remember.
I also have a lot. (I wish it was only 50)
Similar to Steve's 1870s to 1960s
I also like the different ways the same problems have been overcome.
Some of the attachments are ingenious as well.
It would be great to have one with family history.
Stephen; Looks good!
My cobbler is the same model. Mine is as found except a lot cleaner then found! Because of my bad foot most of the time I use the hand wheel. I also have the flat top table he made for it that fits around the arm. I did have to cut it down a bit was just way too big.
Hall, you can replace the veneer on that side, my grandmother's sewing machine needs that done too.
It takes a big of patience, but it can be done!
This is a great topic. It is nice you have kept this. I picked up a "Bartlett" 50 years ago at the Salvation Army for $5. It gathers dust and other items but is fun to have around. Those wonderful cast frames are delightful.
I recall a fellow who made his meager living traveling from place to place with one in his trunk. He would upholster truck seats for cash whenever he needed a bite to eat or a new bottle of Jack Daniel's. He and his lady friend were unforgettable. My Uncle had me supervise him as he did his truck seat.
I haven't used the Bartlett but it has a lot of attachments and will be fun to use some day.
My grandmother was a bookkeeper for the Singer dealer in Mankato, MN and later Minneapolis in the 1920s and early 1930s.
I have her 1920s Singer fan and her 1920s Singer electric sewing machine, both which she purchased as an employee.
We also have my great grandmother's Singer treadle machine which was always well cared for and in excellent condition.
My father has a 1920s Singer commercial machine - I believe a 31-15 - which he has used for upholstery although it is really a heavy duty tailoring machine.
Treadle machines are typically not worth much - huge supply coupled with very low demand. Folks selling them on Craigslist believe they are worth a fortune. However, at estate sales in my area they can be listed for as low as $25 and still not go out the door.
If you want to make money on sewing machines, Singer Featherweights is where the action is.
My soon-to-be wife has a treadle Singer that was in her family. It needs a "new", (better), lid, (the board that hinges over to reveal the machine beneath). Hers has most of the veneer missing. Easier to replace than repair I believe. Do you have any parts machines that may have a decent lid on it, that you may agree to part with?
Jerry - Not likely. Singer made many different styles of treadle cabinets over nearly a 100 years (dozens of them) and out of different types of wood veneer (walnut, oak , maple). I have a lot of extra heads (the machine itself), but not much in the way of extra cabinetry. You best bet is to watch craigslist/ebay in your area for a parts machine with the same cabinet. Or apply new veneer to the existing top. There are a number of tutorials/videos on the net on how to do it.
A Singer 201 or 15-91 gear driven electric machine works well for sewing Model T upholstery including side curtains.
I used my grandmothers old singer to sew the top on my roadster.
1926 Singer Sewing machine sewing top for a 1926 Model T Roadster
What model T guy wouldn't find this interesting? It's mechanical, historic, involves metal work and wood work. No surprise that more than a few T folks have such machines. I had a great time years ago restoring the treadle machine my great grandmother had passed down. Several generations of my family used it. Now it mostly rests after all that hard work. I suppose it is retired and enjoying life.......
Watch out though. These sewing machines can be just as addicting as any model T.....
Here is the machine goes with the original poster's treadle base.
Wow Steve, didn't realize you were also into Sewing Machines! I just refinished one we've had around the house for years. My daughter is looking for one like this - it's called a Parlor Cabinet model. Let me know if you come across anything like it at a good price.
Parlor cabinets came in many styles also. They are really the top-of-the-line models. That one of yours is gorgeous. I see them now and then on C-list, but they often needs some work. I'll keep my eyes open for one.
This is really drifting off topic, but if anyone is interested, here is a thread about an 1870s era Howe sewing machine I resurrected last year.
Very interesting. I've never seen or heard of a parlor model before. That is really pretty.
Terry - here's a parlor cabinet Singer on craigslist.
Same parlor cabinet in Minneapolis - different model machine and in better shape: