John Wilson Wheeler

John Wilson  Wheeler  (1832-1910)
John Wilson Wheeler (1832-1910)

John Wilson Wheeler began working as a carpenter and when he was 24 years of age became a clerk in a general store. He worked there for seven years, then bought the store from his employer, Andrew J. Clark, who then went into the building of hand sewing machines. John Wilson Wheeler continued the store for four years and in 1867 joined Clark in the sewing machine business.

In 1867 the Barker-Clark combination having developed the Gold Medal Sewing Machine Company, moved the plant to Orange, Massachusetts just as his former employer Thomas Howard White had done and a stock company was formed on April 27 of that year. The first annual meeting of the Board was held on July 31, 1867Andrew J. Clark was elected President, with John Wilson Wheeler Secretary-Treasurer and Stephen French as Superintendent.

In 1869 the firm was reorgan­ized as a corporation, taking the name of the machine, with Mr. Clark as president and John Wilson Wheeler as secretary and treasurer.

On January 25, 1882 the Gold Medal Sewing Machine was reorganised and became  New Home Sewing Machine Company with John Wilson Wheeler as a chairman. 


John Wilson Wheeler  remained President of the New Home Sewing Machine Company from 1882 until his death with the exception of 1903 at which time William L. Grout was President. 

He had been active in agricultural societies and was a member of several Masonic bodies. he filled from time to time several town offices and at one time represented his district in the Massachusetts Legislature and was a member of Governor Guild's Council, retiring in January, 1907.

John Wilson Wheeler, died in Orange, Massachusetts, May 2, 1920.