Tuesday, February 4

Precognitive Dreaming Of The Eye Of The Needle Brought Him Success

Using a sewing machine

It's sometimes strange how posts come about. I've mentioned that Karin used to do a lot of dress making and designing. We were talking about this as she has recently bought herself a new sewing machine.

"Wonder who made the first sewing machine?" she asked. I thought it was Isaac Singer but, as with many inventions, there are varying opinions.

Elias Howe
Elias Howe
A popular choice as the inventor of the sewing machine, I've found out, is Elias Howe of Cambridge, Massachusetts and at the very least, he was a sewing machine pioneer. But, whatever, for the purpose of this post there is a synchronicity story of how he dreamt of the design for the needle of his machine.

Back in the early 1840s Howe was puzzling with the design of the needle and this is supposedly how his design came about:

His original idea was to follow the model of an ordinary needle, and have the eye at the heel. It never occurred to him that it should be placed near the point. He might well have failed altogether if he had not dreamed he was building a sewing machine for a savage king in a strange country.

Just as in his actual working experience, in his dream he was perplexed about the needle’s eye. The king gave him twenty-four hours in which to complete the machine and make it sew. If it wasn't finished in that time death was to be the punishment.

Howe worked and worked, and puzzled, and finally gave up. In his dream he was taken out to be executed.

Sewing machine needle
He noticed, however, that the warriors carried spears and that they were pierced near the head. Instantly came the solution to his problem, and while the inventor was begging for time, he awoke.

It was 4 o’clock in the morning. He jumped out of bed, ran to his workshop, and by 9 a.m a needle with an eye at the point had been rudely made.

After that the design was pretty straight forward and on September 10, 1846, Howe was awarded the first United States patent (U.S. Patent 4,750) for a sewing machine using his design. One of the essential features was a needle with the eye at the point.

By the time Elias Howe died in 1867 he was a multi millionaire - as was Isaac Singer.

Other Dream Posts:
Ancient Egyptians And Their World Of Dreams
The Precognitive Dream Of An Air Crash
A Precognition In A Dream And A Ghost With A Fetish

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  1. I've always loved this story about about Howe. It really emphasizes the creative power of dreams.

    1. Until Karin asked the question I'd never heard of the Howe story previously.

    2. I hadn't heard it until today. Maybe it's because I grew up surrounded by sewing machines and yet, we could never "see eye-to-eye" which I was often told had to do with the thread tension... Sorry, this story just tickled too many memories and I'm feeling all warm and fuzzy. Thanks! :D

    3. Thanks Terri :) Sewing machines have been very much part of Karin's life. She loves making things and when the children were small she used to do dressmaking for other people, it fitted in with family life and gave her some pin money.