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Singer 'Turtleback' Machine

This machine was the first Singer to be designed for domestic use, in response to public demand for a lighter and speedier machine for home use.

Called the Singer "Family" model and dating from the 1850s, it became nicknamed the "Turtle Back" (or "Grasshopper").

While the machine with its thick cast iron base was heavy enough, the sewing mechanism was light and the heavy wheel weighed the machine down on one side. The treadle was driven by a flat leather belt.

This model was superceded by the Singer Letter A in 1859.

1858 Singer 'Turtleback' Machine in Treadle

Courtesy of Mike Anderson (Wolfgang's Collectibles)