Antique Sewing Machine Resource - Eldredge/National Machines

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HISTORY OF THE COMPANY


Also a manufacturer of automobiles in the early 1900s, the National Sewing Machine Company was formed by the consolidation of two Illinois based manufacturers: the Eldredge and June companies.

The Eldredge Sewing Machine Company was originally located in Chicago, Ill, and manufactured machines from 1869 through 1890. Also located in Illinois, the June Manufacturing Company manufactured sewing machines from 1881 through 1890. The National Sewing Machine Company was formed in 1890 from their consolidation.

Machines in the company’s product line included both original designs and models copied from other manufacturers. However, unlike Singer or W&W, National only manufactured domestic use models. In 1924, the National sewing machine company bought all rights belonging to the Davis S.M. Company.

Most National sewing machines were “stenciled models’ manufactured for department stores, mail order companies, and retailers. By the mid-1920s, the majority of National-made sewing machines were sold in this way.

Like the other American sewing machine manufacturers, the National company suffered heavy losses with the introduction of European and Japanese sewing machines to the US market after the Second World War. National merged with The Free and the New Home companies in 1953. But the move was futile, and the resulting corporation could not keep up with the new competition and eventually went bankrupt in 1957.

--From The Encyclopedia of Antique Sewing Machines, 3rd Edition

Eldredge vibrating, rotary, automatic, and two-spool machines

Eldredge Sewing Machines 1880s

Sears "clone" machine of Singer New Family (?) (1897 Sears Catalog)
Eldredge vibrating shuttle sewing machine (Photo courtesy of G. Bethel)

Vibrating Shuttle Sewing Machines 1880s-1890s

Head of Acme vibrating shuttle machine (1897 Sears Catalog)
Acme sewing machine in treadle cabinet (1897 Sears Catalog)
Iowa vibrating shuttle machine in treadle cabinet (1897 Sears Catalog)
Head of Minnesota vibrating shuttle machine (1897 Sears Catalog)
New Queen sewing machine in treadle cabinet (1897 Sears Catalog)
Prifzlarf sewing machine (Photo courtesy of G. Bethell)
Goodrich sewing machine (Photo courtesy of G. Bethel)

Vibrating Shuttle Sewing Machines 1900s-1920s

Improved New Goodrich sewing machine (Photo courtesy of G. Bethel)
National Weyemouth Mercury sewing machine (Photo courtesy of G. Bethel)
Bracket motor turned under the arm when not in use
Brunswick sewing machine (Photo courtesy of G. Bethell)
Brunswick sewing machine head (Photo courtesy of G. Bethell)
Shorter Portable Brunswick with cast iron base (Photo courtesy of G. Bethell)
Windsor B sewing machine (Photo courtesy of G. Bethell)

Vibrating Shuttle Sewing Machines 1920s-1930s

National Damascus sewing machine (Photo courtesy of G. Bethel)
Late model Windsor B sewing machine (Photo courtesy of G. Bethell)

Rotary Sewing Machine

Position of the automatic tension
Position of the stitch regulator, bobbin winder, and loose pully
National Damascus Grand sewing machine (Photo courtesy of G. Bethel)
National sewing machine (Photo courtesy of G. Bethell)
Volo Electric sewing machine (Photo courtesy of G. Bethell)
Vaucelle Rotary sewing machine (Photo courtesy of G. Bethell)

Chain Stitch Sewing Machine

Western Electric chainstich sewing machine (Photo courtesy of G. Bethell)

Two Spool Sewing Machine

Mechanism of the Eldredge two-spool machine
Side View of the Eldredge two-spool machine


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