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M-593 Singer Manufacturing Company Correspondence

ABSTRACT: Letters regarding the Singer Manufacturing Company, 1865.

SCOPE: This collection includes two letters, both dated October 21, 1865. The first letter is addressed to the Singer Manufacturing Company. The second letter is addressed to Inslee A. Hopper, the company’s president. Both letters appear to be written by O.F. Lowe on behalf of Edwin Dean. The letters discuss the work of agents selling Singer sewing machines in St. Louis and the surrounding areas.

EXTENT: Two letters.

HISTORY: Isaac Merritt Singer founded I.M. Singer and Company in 1851. By 1865, the company had become the top producer of sewing machines globally, and the business was renamed the Singer Manufacturing Company. Inslee A. Hopper succeeded Isaac Singer as the president of the company in 1863 and continued in that role until 1875.

Edwin Dean (1804-1876) was born in Poughkeepsie, New York. By 1863, he had moved to St. Louis and began working as a sales agent for Singer sewing machines. Dean had at least five children, including Julia Dean, an acclaimed nineteenth-century stage actress. Oscar F. Lowe (1830-1882) married Dean’s daughter Edwina, and he worked as an agent for the Singer company at the same time as his father-in-law.

ACCESS: This collection can be viewed on-site in the Rare Book and Manuscripts Reading Room.  Some of the material may be photocopied, digitally scanned or photographed, subject to condition and other access restrictions. Information on conducting research with the archival collections of the Library, including current building hours and reading room policies, can be found on our Research page. The St. Louis Mercantile Library is located on levels one and two of the Thomas Jefferson Library building on the University of Missouri-St. Louis’ north campus.

Preferred Citation note: The preferred citation for this collection is “From the Special Collections of the St. Louis Mercantile Library at the University of Missouri – St. Louis."