SMITH-STARLEY & CO. Limited
Coventry - England
James Starley was one of the world’s greatest inventors. Before he made bicycles, he built and sold sewing machines. Even after cycle production started, his sewing machine business was thriving so he built sewing machines as well as cycles and tricycles at his Trafalgar Works factory.
The ‘ Queen of Hearts ’ is his most famous sewing machine
William Borthwick Smith and James Starley filed patent no 3090 (above), on 20th September 1873, for a new sewing machine design. It was sealed on 17th March 1874. This design formed the basis of their famous ‘Queen of Hearts’ machine.
This example is in ‘oily rag’ condition: the transfer is faded, but luckily it’s still visible. You can compare it with the copy of a good condition transfer above.
The picture on the sewing machine is believed to be that of Princess Alexandra.