Mrs. Tom Thumb's Sewing Machine

Miniature sewing machine and cabinet; cabinet decorated with six panel paintings and inlaid with mother-of-pearl depicting wedding of Tom Thumb and Lavinia Warren Bump, their carriage ride in Central Park, patriotic panels of each of them with the American flag, and the back panels show a woman sewing by hand and then sewing using a Wheeler and Wilson Sewing Machine. All sides of the case protecting the sewing machine head have painted decorations: an American Eagle is painted on the front; on the right side a cherub with crossed arms; on the left side a cherub resting his chin on a hand; and the Wheeler and Wilson factory is shown on the back. Inside the cabinet are five drawers with ivory knobs containing sewing bobbins, four glass presser feet, one package of five needles, one wrench and one attachment guide The flywheel and other parts within the cabinet are silver-plated. Two separate foot shaped treadles measure a tiny 7 1/2"L x 2"W.
Currently not on view
Object Name
sewing machine
date made
Thumb, Tom
Bump, Lavinia Warren
Wheeler and Wilson Manufacturing Company
Physical Description
wood (overall material)
metal (overall material)
ivory (overall material)
paint (overall material)
overall: 27 in x 22 in x 16 in; 68.58 cm x 55.88 cm x 40.64 cm
place made
United States: Connecticut, Bridgeport
made at
United States
ID Number
catalog number
accession number
Victorian Needlework
See more items in
Home and Community Life: Textiles
Victorian Needlework
Data Source
National Museum of American History, Kenneth E. Behring Center
Additional Media

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