Saturday, March 24, 2012

Gone but not forgotten

 The five Featherweights are heading for their new home in a north coast state. A mother-daughter quilting team wanted to take the machines under their wings. (See March 21st post.) An intricate traveling schedule involving grandsons, sons, and a sister going on vacation facilitated their journey.

I won’t forget the machines because I’m quilting a Featherweight wallhanging to put up in my sewing room. It has been a PhD (Project half done) and now it will soon be finished. It's being quilted on one of the Featherweight's big sisters -- a Singer 301.

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Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Ready for a new home

 Not me! I’m staying here. I have five (5) Singer Featherweight sewing machines. That’s five too many for one person. I sew on my trusty Singer 301s.

I posted on Yahoo’s Featherweight Group:
“I have a batch (5) of Five Featherweight sewing machines, including a white one. My husband and I bought them over the years. We joked about them being for our retirement. Well, he died a year and a half ago and I am running out of money to pay my taxes. So, I’d like to sell the batch as a bunch.
I don’t want to pack them individually. I live in the California Delta which is 60 miles east of San Francisco.
The machines were all running when I put them away in a closet. I think Featherweights are going for around $250 nowadays, so I’d like to sell the batch for $1,250 as are, where are."

I’ve had e-mail inquiries asking “Where will you ship them?” “Can I pick up one and take it to a sewing machine shop to be checked out?” “What are the serial numbers?” “Please send pictures.”

I don’t want to ship them. But I did take some photos and turned the machines upside down to find their numbers.

The serial numbers (starting at the bottom step) are:
Even though these are “featherweight” it was a big job for me to haul them out and set them up for their photo session today. I sure hope someone in the Bay Area wants a flock of Featherweights.

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Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Granddad's chickens

 This bird does not look like one of today’s chickens and yet she was a top prizewinner in the early 20th century. Duchess had her portrait drawn by F.L. Temple in 1904. She is standing on a packing crate.

My granddad, Fremont Chapin, was a gentleman farmer and called his place ChapinDale in Oneida, New York. He traveled the world seeking out fine chickens. He would get on a steamer and sail to Europe to choose chickens to be brought home to ChapinDale. He raised prize specimens and showed them at exhibitions. Madison Square Garden II held huge poultry shows.

 He won several blue and red ribbons at the Garden events in 1899 and 1901. They have been kept in a box ever since then. There was also a medal for a Challenge Cup in 1899. There were two ribbons from the Adirondack Poultry & Pet Stock Club in Johnstown, N.Y. from 1898.
Fremont was in his 40s when he did his. A New York Times article from 1909 describes the Madison Square Garden event: “Chickens Coming to Roost. . . .Years of service and popularity have given to the show a hold upon the public favor. … [T]here is a representative in every class that shows what the American poultry-raiser can do and what, also, has been done in the adoption of foreign birds and their betterment by American treatment.”
I wrote about my granddad in 2009 here.

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