Profile of the Day: Elias Howe

Posted July 9, 2013 by Amanda | No Comment

Elias Howe

On July 9, 1819, American inventor Elias Howe was born in Spencer, Massachusetts. Howe invented the first practical sewing machine, which ultimately revolutionized the manufacturing of garments both commercially and in the home. In 1846, he received his patent for a sewing machine using a lockstitch design. However, he found it difficult to market his new machine to the U.S. public. While Howe struggled, other entrepreneurs found success replicating, improving and selling the sewing machines, most notably Isaac Singer. After successfully defending his patent in a prolonged court case, Howe earned considerable royalties from Singer and others for sales of his invention. He contributed much of the money he earned to providing equipment for the 17th Connecticut Volunteer Infantry Regiment of the Union Army during the Civil War.

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