Extract from 


For do we not read, in the Book of Esther, that Ahasuerus, in the third year of his reign, " showed the riches of his kingdom and the honour of his excellent majesty many days, even a hundred and four score days " ? Moreover, exhibitions not international, except in the sense that they consisted to a large extent of the spoils of conquered countries, were held at Rome during the last days of the Republic and the infancy of the Empire; but the invasion of the barbarians was fatal to any of the triumphs of peace, and there were no exhibitions from the time of Nero till the Middle Ages were well advanced.

At Venice, in 1268, during the Dogeship of  Lorenzo Tiepolo, there was a good industrial exhibition, accompanied by a procession of the trades and an aquatic fete. The fairs held at Leipzig and Nijni Novgorod in Europe, as well as at Tantah, half-way between Cairo and Alexandria, during the Middle Ages, had many of the characteristics of modern exhibitions; while at Leyden, in 1689, the Dutch held a singular fair, at which they exhibited a great number of the most curious products of the East.

Of modern exhibitions the first of the series, as far as we can gather, was held in London in 1756.





1756  LONDON

First Exhibition sponsored by Royal Society of Arts.

The Royal Society for the encouragement of Arts, Manufactures and Commerce (RSA) is a British organisation committed to finding practical solutions to today's social challenges. Based in London, it is usually known as the RSA or Royal Society of Arts.

The Society was founded in 1754, was granted a Royal Charter in 1847 and the right to use the term Royal in its name by King Edward VII in 1908.Charles Dickens, Adam Smith, Benjamin Franklin, Karl Marx, William Hogarth, John Diefenbaker, Stephen Hawking and Tim Berners-Lee are some of the notable past and present members, and it has today more than 27,000 Fellows from 70 countries worldwide.

The RSA's Medal winners include Nelson Mandela, Sir Frank Whittle, and Professor Stephen Hawking. The RSA Medals, named Albert Medal, the Benjamin Franklin Medal and the Bicentenary Medal, are still awarded. The RSA members are still among the innovative contributors to the human knowledge, as shown by the Oxford English Dictionary which records the first use of the term "sustainability" in an environmental sense of the word in the RSA's Journal in 1980.



First Industrial Exhibition in Prague, Klementinum, considerable sophistication of manufacturing methods.


1798  PARIS

L'Exposition publique des produits de l'industrie française.


This was the First Public Industrial Exposition in France although earlier in 1798 the Marquis d'Avèze had held a private exposition of handicrafts and manufactured goods at the Maison d'Orsay in the Rue de Varennes and it was this that suggested the idea of a public exposition to François de Neufchâteau, Minister of the Interior for the French Republic.


1801  PARIS

Second Exposition

After the success of the exposition of 1798 a series of expositions for French manufacturing followed (1801, 1802, 1806, 1819, 1823, 1827, 1834, 1844 and 1849) until the first properly international (or universal) exposition in France in 1855.


1802   PARIS

Third Exposition


1804  VIENNA



1806   PARIS

Fourth Exposition


1819   PARIS

Fifth Exposition


1822  BERLIN

The first Berlin Industrial Exposition was initiated by the Prussian Minister Christian Peter Wilhelm Beuth. The trade fair took place from September 1 to October 15, 1822 as an exhibition of regional trades in the House of Industries in the Kloßterstraße. There were 182 exhibition companies showing 998 different products to 9.514 visitors.


1823   PARIS

Sixth Exposition


1827   PARIS

Seventh Exposition


1827  BERLIN

Berlin Industrial Exposition of regional trades took place in the House of Industries in the Kloßterstraße.



American Institute Fair


1829  TURIN  

Prima Triennale Pubblica, Esposizione in Turin, a second 'triennale' followed in 1832 before other national agricultural, industrial, commercial and applied arts expositions there in 1838, 1844, 1850 and 1858


1830  Barthelemy Thimonnier  French patent

In 1829, Barthelemy Thimonnier invented the sewing machine and in 1830 he signed a contract with Auguste Ferrand, a mining engineer, who made the requisite drawings and submitted a patent application. The patent for his machine was issued on 17 July 1830 in the names of both men, supported by the French government. The same year, he opened (with partners) the first machine-based clothing manufacturing company in the world. It was supposed to create army uniforms. However, the factory was burned down, reportedly by workers fearful of losing work following the issuing of the patent.


The French Revolution of 1830, also known as the July Revolution. Two years later Parisian students, disillusioned by the outcome and underlying motives of the uprising, revolted in an event known as the June Rebellion. Although the insurrection was crushed within less than a week, the July Monarchy remained unpopular and was eventually overthrown in 1848. The 1848 Revolution in France, sometimes known as the February Revolution.


Thimonnier then returned to Amplepuis and supported himself as a tailor again, while searching for improvements to his machine. He obtained new patents in 18411845, and 1847 for new models of sewing machine. However, despite having won prizes at World Fairs, and being praised by the press, use of the machine did not spread. Thimonnier's financial situation remained difficult and he died in poverty at the age of 63.





1831  PARIS

The Paris Colonial Exhibition (or "Exposition coloniale internationale", International Colonial Exhibition) was a six-month colonial exhibition held in Paris, France in 1931 that attempted to display the diverse cultures and immense resources of France's colonial possessions.




1832   TURIN

Seconda Esposizione Triennale Pubblica





Calcutta International Exhibition




1834  PARIS

Eighth Exposition





The First Annual Fair and Exhibition for Premiums of the Massachusetts Charitable Mechanic Association, was held in September 18, 1837.




1838  TURIN

Pubblica esposizione




1839  PARIS

Ninth Exposition






Faneuil and Quincy Halls, Boston
Faneuil and Quincy Halls, Boston


The Second Exhibition of the Massachusetts Charitable Mechanic Association at Quincy Hall  in the City of Boston.September 23, 1839.


The Third Exhibition of the Massachusetts Charitable Mechanic Association at Quincy Hall  in the City of Boston. September 20, 1841.




Pubblica Esposizione dei Prodotti di Arte e Manufatture



1842   John Greenough first American patent for a sewing machine



1844  BERLIN

In 1844 the General German Industrial Exhibition (in German Allgemeine Deutsche Gewerbe-Ausstellung) took place in the old arsenal house, the Zeughaus of Berlin. Among 3.040 exhibition companies there were 685 Berlin companies showing a large variety of German industrial goods; the exhibition saw 260.000 visitors.




The Fourth Exhibition of the Massachusetts Charitable Mechanic Association at Quincy Hall  in the City of Boston.September 16, 1844.



1844  PARIS

Tenth Exposition

The French Industrial Exposition of 1844, held in a temporary structure on the Champs-Élysées in Paris, was one in a series of eleven French National Industrial Expositions held to encourage improvements in progressive agriculture and in technology, that had their origins in 1798. The first Paris exposition immediately spawned imitators.



1844  TURIN

Quarta Esposizione dell'Industria e delle Belle Arti.



1845   BERN 



1845   MADRID




     1846 Elias Howe Jr.   

American patent


1846  GENOA 

Esposizione dei Prodotti e delle Manufatture Nazionali




Industrial Exposition







The Fifth Exhibition of the Massachusetts Charitable Mechanic Association at Faneuil and Quincy Hall  in the City of Boston. September, 1847. It opened on September 15 and closed on Saturday, October 2, 1847.



1848 NEW YORK                   

Merchant's Exchange

First Sewing Machine Publicly Exhibited in New York

The first sewing machine illustrated and described in any publication in America.

In 1848, Charles Morey was the first person who publicly exhibited a sewing machine in this city and by his enterprise and business tact, he first gave that public impulse to the importance of  such machines, which has resulted in their great improvement and wide-spread use at the present day.








1849  PARIS

Eleventh Exposition

The exposition returned to Paris in 1849, called the Exposition of the Second Republic or Exposition Nationale des Produits de l’Industrie Agricole et Manufacturière.



1849  United Kingdom 

First Exhibition of British Manufacturers




Exposition of British Society



1849 Castle Garden, New York
1849 Castle Garden, New York







Silver medal


Blodgett & Lerow

Boston, Massachusetts


for a patent sewing machine, very ingenious (stitches 1 yard per minute)


US 6.766         October 2, 1849



from the Report:


The speaker then referred to the Sewing Machine on exhibition, by which the needle was successfully made to work by the application of steam power and demonstrated that it could sew a seam with extraordinary speed over manual labor.







Royal Dublin Society Exhibition




Quinta Esposizione dell' Industria e delle Belle Arti





Pubblica Esposizione dei Prodotti Naturali and Industriali della Toscana.



1850 Castle Garden, New York
1850 Castle Garden, New York




The Fair commenced at Castle Garden on the 1st of October and closed the 23rd of October. The attendance of visitors, under the generally fine weather prevailing during the exhibition, shows a steady increase from previous years. The articles in the various departments were of a character in novelty, utility and beauty to reflect the highest credit upon American Industry; indeed, the exhibition of 1850, if it could have been transferred without injury to its materials, or its arrangements, into the approaching World's Exhibition, would have sufficiently honored our great country.


Sewing Machines present at the 23rd Annual Fair

Sewing Machines Present and Awarded

1. Hart H. Leavitt  Boston, Massachusetts. Silver medal (???)

2. Charles Morey    16 Platt Street.  Diploma



1846 (Elias jr. Howe)
1846 (Elias jr. Howe)
1849 (Jotham S. Conant)
1849 (Jotham S. Conant)
1849 (Benjamin W. Bean)
1849 (Benjamin W. Bean)
1850 (O. L.  Reynolds)
1850 (O. L. Reynolds)
1850 (W.C. Watson)
1850 (W.C. Watson)
1848 (John A. Bradshaw)
1848 (John A. Bradshaw)
1849 (John Bachelder)
1849 (John Bachelder)
1849 (Barthelemy Thimonnier)
1849 (Barthelemy Thimonnier)
1850 (Allen B. Wilson)
1850 (Allen B. Wilson)
1849 (Morey & Johnson)
1849 (Morey & Johnson)
1849 (Lerow & Blodgett)
1849 (Lerow & Blodgett)
1850 (David M. Smith)
1850 (David M. Smith)
1850 (Frederick R. Robinson)
1850 (Frederick R. Robinson)


Faneuil and Quincy Halls, Boston
Faneuil and Quincy Halls, Boston


The Sixth Exhibition of the Massachusetts Charitable Mechanics Association .

The Exhibition was opened in Faneuil and Quincy Halls, in the City of Boston, on Wednesday the 11th of September and closed on Saturday, the 28th of September 1850.



Sewing Machines present at the VI Exhibition



Sewing Machines Present and Awarded


1. Jones & Lee (New York) by  C. D. Kellogg, (Boston). Watson Machine


2. Orson  C. Phelps (Boston) Blodgett & Lerow  Machine


3. John Bachelder (Boston) 


4. S. D. Dyer (Boston) J. B. Johnson & Charles Morey





Crystal Palace, London
Crystal Palace, London

1851 LONDON 

The Great Exhibition of the Works of Industry of all Nations or The Great Exhibition, sometimes referred to as the Crystal Palace Exhibition in reference to the temporary structure in which it was held, was an international exhibition that took place in Hyde Park, London, from 1 May to 11 October 1851. It was the first in a series of World's Fair exhibitions of culture and industry that were to become a popular 19th-century feature. 

Sewing Machines present at the Exhibition







1851 Grover & Baker
1851 Grover & Baker




1851 I. M. Singer
1851 I. M. Singer
1851 A.B. Wilson
1851 A.B. Wilson


Castle Garden, New York
Castle Garden, New York




The twenty-fourth Annual Fair was opened at Castle Garden on Wednesday, the 1st day of October, 1851 and closed on the 25th. The attendance of visitors was as usual very large and though the cash receipts does not quite equal that of last year, yet this was one of the most successful exhibitions of the Institute. It may be safely stated, that no preceding fair ever elicited a higher degree of interest and certainly none was ever more deserving of it. Let it be borne in mind that a greater number of fairs were held during last fall than have ever been known before and it will be clearly perceived that the subject is losing nothing in public interest and it need create no surprise that persons living at a distance should be satisfied with having a fair at their own doors.



I.M Singer, 256 Broadway, New-York, for the best sewing machine





Castle Garden, New York
Castle Garden, New York







The Fair was opened at Castle Garden on the 6th day of October 1852 and closed the 29th. The total number of exhibitors who presented themselves, exclusive of those at the cattle show, amounted to 2.292. The attendance of visitors was unusually large. The total net receipts at Castle Garden, show that near 100.000 persons paid for admission. Taking into consideration the number of members who are furnished with free family tickets, the number of delegates from various kindred associations in the United States, the extreme liberality of the managers in granting free admissions to distinguished individuals from abroad, with the free access of exhibitors, it may be fairly estimated that not less than 500.000 persons entered Castle Carden during the exhibition.


I.M. Singer & Co., 285 Broadway, for the best sewing machine

(a gold medal having been before awarded)





Faneuil and Quincy Halls, Boston
Faneuil and Quincy Halls, Boston


The Seventh Exhibition of the Massachusetts Charitable Mechanics Association .

The VII Exhibition was opened in Faneuil and Quincy Halls, in the City of Boston.                       September 1853.




Sewing Machines present at the VII Exhibition






Exposition d'Art Industriel.


The Irish Industrial Exhibition Building
The Irish Industrial Exhibition Building

1853  DUBLIN


Great Industrial Exhibition


The day originally fixed for the opening of the Exhibition being Ascension Day, it was considered desirable to make a change in this respect and accordingly the Executive Committee came to the determination to alter the time from Thursday, the 5th, to Thursday, the 12th of May 1853. As in the case of the Hyde Park Exhibition, increasing numbers continued to visit it until the close, which for some weeks before had been announced to take place on Monday, the 31st of October.  


Sewing Machine present at the Exhibition





Crystal Palace, New York
Crystal Palace, New York

1853-4 NEW YORK


First international exposition of its kind in the United States. Exhibition of the Industry of All Nations was a World's Fair held in 1853 in what is now Bryant Park in New York City, in the wake of the highly successful 1851 Great Exhibition in London. It aimed to showcase the new industrial achievements of the world and also to demonstrate the nationalistic pride of a relatively young nation and all that she stood for. Jacob Aaron Westervelt, at that time Mayor of New York, was the President of the exhibition-committee. The general superintendent was Admiral Du Pont. Opening on July 14, 1853 with newly sworn President Franklin Pierce in attendance, the fair is seen by over 1.1 million visitors before it closes on November 14, 1854. The fair featured its own glass and iron exhibition building, the New York Crystal Palace, directly inspired by London's. The Palace was destroyed by fire on October 5, 1858. Adjoining the Crystal Palace was the Latting Observatory, a wooden tower 315 feet (96 m) high adjoining the Crystal Palace, allowed visitors to see into Queens, Staten Island and New Jersey. The tower, taller than the spire of Trinity Church at 290 feet (88 m), was the tallest structure in New York City from the time it was constructed in 1853 until it burnt down on August 30, 1856.

Today, the expo is also remembered as the place where Elisha Otis demonstrated an elevator equipped with a device called a safety, which would kick in if the hoisting rope broke. This addressed a major public concern regarding the safety of elevators. Three years later, Otis installed the first passenger elevator in the United States in a New York City store.


Sewing Machines present at the Exhibition





Castle Garden, New York
Castle Garden, New York







For the purpose of encouraging, improving and sustaining American genius, American art, American manufactures and American labor, the Institute, for the last twenty-six years, has held its annual fair in the city of New-York at Castle Garden. The 26th Annual Fair would open in October 6, 1853, but in consequence of the delay on the part of exhibitors in bringing forward their contributions, the day of opening was postponed until Monday, the 10th. It is proper to observe that the Exhibition of the Industry of All Nations at Crystal Palace opened in July last and the novelty of this exhibition, purporting to exhibit the products of all nations, drew a large number of exhibitors who were in the habit of attending the Fairs of the Institute  


Grover, Baker & Co., Boston, Mass., for the best sewing machine






Exhibition Building, Melbourne
Exhibition Building, Melbourne


The 1854 MELBOURNE  EXHIBITION Building was opened in preparation for Australia's first industrial exhibition. A wide variety of colonial products was displayed at the exhibition, but most were agricultural or industrial products. The exhibition opened on 17 December 1854 and ran for 30 days. About 40.000 people attended, approximately half of Victoria's population.



The exhibition building (the "Glass Palace")
The exhibition building (the "Glass Palace")

1854  MUNICH 

Allgemeine Deutsche Industrie Austellung

The First General German Industrial Exhibition

In the German-speaking area, a small First German Industrial Exhibition had already been held in Mainz in 1842 by the Grand Ducal Trade Association Hesse in Deutschhaus. The General German Trade Exhibition in 1844 in Berlin's Arsenal with 3.040 exhibitors and 260.000 visitors, the exhibitions in Vienna in 1850 with 2.000 and in the same year in Leipzig with at least 1.414 exhibitors, were considerably larger. However, all these previous German exhibitions did not offer such greatness, such a broad spectrum and truly international participation and charisma. Due to the great success of these exhibitions, King Maximilian II of Bavaria determined in 1853, in the following year in Munich also to perform such. The reason for this was his desire to consolidate Munich's reputation as a progressive business location and to establish Munich as an important trade fair location. Max II also saw the solution of the social question in the industrialization of Bavaria so far agricultural Bavaria. The exhibition was intended to provide a decisive impetus for the development of industry and trade in Bavaria. His decision to bring this first national overview of the high level of German industry and commerce to Munich was thus part of a very modern economic policy.

 H.B. Hess in Leipzig (Saxony)

Awarded because of the well executed improved sewing machine




Crystal Palace, New York
Crystal Palace, New York







The first subject of consideration was the location for the exhibition. Castle Garden, in which the fairs of the Institute had been held since the destruction of Niblo's Garden in 1846, was found to be in the hands of the Commissioners of Emigration and therefore could not be had for our exhibition. The managers announce to the manufacturers, mechanics, inventors, artisans, farmers, gardeners and all others interested, in the United States, that they have secured the Crystal Palace, erected in 1853, for the Exhibition of the Industry of all Nations, in which to hold the 27th Annual Fair of the American Institute. The 27th Annual Fair of the American Institute was opened for the reception of articles on the 27th of September and to the public on the 3d of October and continued until the 13th of November, making the time the Fair was open near three weeks longer than usual.


Sewing Machines Awarded at the 27th Annual Fair






Palais de l'industrie, Champs-Élysées, Paris
Palais de l'industrie, Champs-Élysées, Paris

1855  PARIS

The First international French Exhibition  ( Exposition Universelle ) and the world second, the first being the Great Exhibition of 1851 in London.


World Exhibition in Paris would be a symbol of French prosperity. During a 12 years period, trade was growing by 300%. The exhibition was however not a major success since it was too close after the London exhibition. Few technological innovations and low attendance.


The Exposition Universelle of 1855 was an International Exhibition held on the Champs-Élysées in Paris from 15 May to 15 November 1855.



Crystal Palace, New York
Crystal Palace, New York






September 24, 1856.  


Ladies and Gentlemen, the managers request me to salute you on the opening of the twenty-eighth Annual Fair of the American Institute, in this splendid Crystal Palace. It is my highest pleasure to obey their request in opening to America, old and young, the abundant new demonstrations of their noble progress in these, the God-bidden works of their hands. You see that there can be few folded far-niente arms in our republic. The do-nothings are almost as scarce as the mammoths.

The New York Crystal Palace itself was destroyed by fire on October 5, 1858.


 Sewing Machine present at the 28th Annual Fair






Faneuil and Quincy Halls, Boston
Faneuil and Quincy Halls, Boston


The Eighth Exhibition of the Massachusetts Charitable Mechanics Association.

The VIII Exhibition was opened in Faneuil and Quincy Halls, in the City of Boston.                       September 1856.



Sewing Machines present at the VIII Exhibition







Esposizione Nazionale dei Prodotti Industriali



The Stock Exchange, Stuttgart
The Stock Exchange, Stuttgart



1853. Ferdinand von Steinbeis (1807-1893), President of the Central Office for Trade and Commerce (later Landgewerbeamt), founded in 1848, initiates the founding of a stock exchange. His efforts remain unsuccessful for the time being.

February 4, 1860. Representatives of 57 companies from Württemberg, Baden, Hohenzollern and Bavaria, including above all important textile companies, founded in the Stuttgart Königsbau an industrial trade association, which also has its headquarters here. Initiators are the textile manufacturer Arnold Staub and Ferdinand von Steinbeis.

March 12, 1860. Opening of the commodity exchange. From then on, a stock market meeting will take place on the first Monday of each month. Above all cotton, cotton fabric and colored goods are traded. The commodity exchange presents itself under the name "Stuttgarter Industriebörsen-Verein" the public. Irrespective of the industrial exchange, a country product exchange is founded for the grain and flour wholesalers. Both exchanges will be held in the newly opened Café Königsbau.

October 29, 1860. A constituent committee, consisting of well-known Stuttgart private bankers, presents the Ministry of the Interior with a stock exchange statute and stock exchange regulations. The Articles of Association are valid for the industrial exchange and for the planned securities exchange (stock exchange). Both exchanges are summarized a little later under the name "Börsenverein".   

Sewing Machine present at the Exhibition






Exhibition Building, Melbourne
Exhibition Building, Melbourne



Victorian Exhibition


This exhibition was, as the name implies, almost exclusively Victorian. It was organised to collect together articles of produce and manufacture so worthy items could be selected for display at the London International Exhibition the following year. The exhibition opened on 1 October 1861 and closed on 29 November 1861. The exhibition was held in Melbourne's first Exhibition Building, built in 1854 on the corner of Latrobe and William Streets. It was designed by Samuel Hendon Merrett and Thomas Merrett, architects and designers for the Melbourne Exhibition of 1854. The building served a variety of purposes, both as an exhibition building for the 1854 and 1861 exhibitions, as the primary concert venue for the Melbourne Philharmonic Society between 1854-66, a lecture hall, and the venue for the 1864 Vice Regal Ball. After suffering a range of structural problems and leaking glass roof, the building was demolished at the end of the 1860s and the Melbourne Mint constructed on the same site during 1871-72.








Esposizione Italiana



South Kensington, London
South Kensington, London





The International of 1862 or Great London Exposition, was a world's fair. It was held from 1 May to 1 November 1862, beside the gardens of the Royal Horticultural Society, South Kensington, London, England, on a site that now houses museums including the Natural History Museum and the Science Museum .


Sewing Machines present at the Exhibition







1864  LONDON

North London Working Classes Industrial Exhibition



1865  DUBLIN

International Exhibition of Arts and Manufactures

1865 PORTO

1865 PARIS

Exposition Universelle




International Industrial Exhibition

It is an exhibition of industry as well as agriculture and agricultural mechanics. Every article in use in rural housekeeping will be admitted at the Altona exhibition; also agricultural, horticultural and floracultural products; garden designs and lawn-furniture farm, dairy and cellar products and cattle. The exhibition will be opened in June, 1866 and will remain open forty days




Intercolonial Exhibition of Australasia.



1867  PARIS

The International Exposition of 1867, called "Exposition universelle (d'art et d'industrie) de 1867" in French, was the second world's fair to be held in Paris, from 1 April to 3 November 1867. Forty two nations were represented at the fair. Following a decree of Emperor Napoleon III, the exposition was prepared as early as 1864, in the midst of the renovation of Paris, marking the culmination of the Second French Empire.

87 sewing machines competing

Wheeler & Wilson awarded, over eighty-two competitors, a GOLD MEDAL, for Perfection of Sewing Machines.

Bartram & Fanton Sewing Machine was aworded a Prize Medal.

R.M. Wanzer & Co.



Faneuil and Quincy Halls, Boston
Faneuil and Quincy Halls, Boston

1869  BOSTON

The Eleventh Exhibition of the Massachusetts Charitable Mechanics Association.

The XI Exhibition was commencing on  Wednesday, September 15, 1869 and continuing to Wednesday, Oct. 6, 1869. 


List of Awards 


Special Notices





1869  NEW YORK

Annual exhibition of the American Institute

1870  SYDNEY

Intercolonial Exhibition of Australasia. 

1871  LONDON

The International exhibition



1872  LYONS




The Weltausstellung 1873 Wien was the large World exposition that was held in 1873 in the Austria–Hungarian capital of Vienna. Its motto was Kultur und Erziehung (Culture and Education).

Opening May 1, 1873. Closure November 1, 1873.

There were almost 26.000 exhibitors housed in different buildings that were erected for this exposition, including the Rotunde (rotunda), a large circular building in the great park of Prater designed by the Scottish engineer John Scott Russell. The Rotunde was destroyed by fire on 17 September 1937.

The Russian pavilion had a naval section designed by Viktor Hartmann. Exhibits included models of the Port of Rijeka and the Illés Relief model of Jerusalem.


R.M. Wanzer & Co.    Three Medals                                                                                             (Two Medals of Merit, One Grand Silver Medal)

                                 The Iron Cross




Victorian Intercolonial Exhibition.



Intercolonial Exhibition of Australasia.




The 1876 Philadelphia Centennial International Exhibition, was the first official World's Fair in the United States. The exhibition was held from May 10 to November 10, 1876, to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the signing of the Declaration of Independence in Philadelphia. Officially named the International Exhibition of Arts, Manufactures and Products of the Soil and Mine, it was held in Fairmount Park along the Schuylkill River on fairgrounds designed by Herman J. Schwarzmann. About 10 million visitors attended, equivalent to about 20% of the population of the United States at the time.


Sewing Machines present at the Exhibition






1877  BERLIN




13th Massachusetts Charitable Mechanics Association exhibit, Park Square, Boston, 1878.



1878  PARIS

The third Paris World's Fair, called an Exposition Universelle in French, was held from 1 May through to 10 November 1878. It celebrated the recovery of France after the 1870 Franco-Prussian War.



1878  VIENNA



1879  BERLIN

Berlin Industrial Exposition.

In 1879 a large exhibition was set in an exhibition park created near the Lehrte Station. The exhibition was not only a show of technological advancements but it was also created as an amusement park.

One of the main attractions of the event was the first electric locomotive from Siemens & Halske. Originally built for use in a coal mine, it pulled three small cars fitted with wooden benches, each car being capable of carrying six passengers for a ride along a 300 meter circular track. Electrical power was supplied to a third rail from a nearby generating station. During the four months of the exhibition, it carried 90,000 passengers. The original locomotive is now displayed at the Deutsches Museum in Munich and a replica is shown at the German Museum of Technology (Berlin).



1879  MUNICH


1879-80   SYDNEY

International Exhibition                                                         F&R




Bicycle & Tricycle Exhibition, Dec, 1880


1880   BERLIN


International Exhibition, 11th April, 1881.



1881    LONDON

Exhibition of Domestic Labour-Saving Appliances                   AGRICULTURAL HALL,  March 7th to 26th, 1881.



1881  ALTONA  near  HAMBURG                                                F&R

International Exhibition of Power and Work Machinery, Implements and Tools for small industries , Machines and Implements for the Dairy and Agricultural Machinery, to be held in 116 Konigstrasse  Altona.

From August 18 to October 17  1881              




1881  HAGUE ( Netherlands )




1882  BERLIN

German Sanitary Exhibition

At Berlin active preparations are being made for the German Sanitary Exhibition and officially styled, " Die Allgemeine Deutsche Ausstellung auf dem Gebiete der Hygiene und des Rettungswesens " for it will include appliances for the direct preservation of life, or even property, as well as inventions which counteract sources of disease. The Prussian Minister of Public "Works has granted that exhibited goods not sold at the close of the exhibition may be returned carriage free ; and the Minister of Finance will permit the import and export of all exhibited goods duty free.



1882  DUBLIN

Irish Industrial Exhibition.

The official programme of the National Exhibition of Irish Manufactures, Arts, Produce and Industries, held in Dublin it will consist of:

(1) exhibits of articles manufactured in Ireland and of Irish raw material ;

(2) machines suited to Irish industries, those made in Ireland being distinguished from those made in other countries ;

(3) an exhibition of works of art by Irish artists and residents in Ireland;

(4) an exhibition of a general loan collection of works of art.

There will be no charge for space to exhibitors, and prizes will be awarded. Local committees are being formed throughout Ireland to co-operate with the general committee. It has also been resolved to give practical lectures on Irish manufactures.



1882  LONDON

Second Annual Exhibition of Domestic Labour-Saving Appliances

AGRICULTURAL HALL, LONDON, AUGUST 24 25, 26, 28, 29, 30, 31 ; SEPTEMBER 1, 2, 4, 5, 6, 7, 1882.




An Exhibition will be held at Trieste from August 1, 1882, to November 15.

There will be five principal groups, viz., mining and smelting, agriculture and forestry, manufactures, marine objects, miscellaneous. The first group will be divided into three classes:1 .Mineral and metallic products. 2.Drawings and models of plant and machinery.3. Natural and artificial mineral waters. In the second will be a class for agricultural implements and machinery. The third which is by far the largest, will contain 17 classes, comprising tools, machinery, and in many cases the complete process of production in various trades. Group 5 will contain collections of raw materials.





1882  MOSCOW

Russian Industrial Exhibition.



1883  AMSTERDAM                                                                    F&R

Amsterdam was the first to have a international colonial exposition in history.

Internationale Koloniale en Uitvoerhandel Tentoonstelling                      (International Colonial and Export Exhibition)

The White Sewing Machine Company was justly awarded the gold medal at the International Exhibition, at Amsterdam and we naturally expect in the forthcoming exhibitions at Antwerp, Turin, Nice and Sydenham, that history will repeat itself. 

(read more)


1883  MUNICH



The Wheeler and Wilson Manufacturing Company obtained the only award and first class certificate at the Calcutta Exhibition.

At Calcutta Exhibition, the Wheeler & Wilson Co. carried off the " Gold Medal,'' and again at Cork, in Ireland.



1884  LONDON

International and Universal Exhibition               Crystal Palace


to be opened at the Crystal Palace, April 23rd, 1884 

1884  LONDON




South Kensington


The exhibition will be opened by the President, His Royal Highness the Prince of Wales, on Thursday, the 8th of May, 1884 at 3 p.m and will continue open for a period of about six months. The International Health Exhibition 1884 was one of a series of international exhibitions held in South Kensington, London, in the 1880s under the patronage of Queen Victoria and the Prince of Wales. Four million people visited the exhibition. The exhibition's motto was "From labour health, from health contentment springs.







1884   VIENNA

An International Exhibition of Motors and Implementary Machinery for the smaller Industries will be held at Vienna, in the localities of the I.E. Horticultural Society, by the Industrial Corporation of Lower Austria, under the Protectorate of  H. I. and E. H. the Archduke Carl Ludwig.

The Exhibition will be opened on the 24th of July, and will close at the latest by the 12th October, 1884, and will contain the following groups :

1. Motors (up to thirty horse-power).  2. Transmitters.  3. Tools, Implementary Machinery and working appliances.  4. Physical and chemical apparatus.  5. Means of reproducing graphic impressions.  5. School and Teaching Appliances for technological instruction.

There will be no prizes awarded, but each Exhibitor will receive a Memorial Medal and Certificate of Participation  at the Exhibition. Motors and Machineries will be examined and tested by a special Commission, that will give Certificates of the results of such trials.







The Exposition Internationale d'Anvers, also known as Wereldtentoonstelling van Antwerpen, was a World's fair held in Antwerp, Belgium, between May 2 and November 2 in 1885. It covered 54.3 acres (220,000 m2), attracted 3.5 million visits and broke even after spending 4 million Belgian francs. There were 25 official participating nations including: Austria, Canada, France, Germany, Great Britain, the Ottoman Empire, Portugal, Serbia, Spain, Kingdom of Romania, the United States and some South American states. Australian wool growers sent exhibitions and won prizes. Taking place 20 years after the accession of Leopold II of Belgium, and the same year of the creation of the Congo Free State the fair was the first in which a Congolese village was displayed, a feature that also appeared in the later 1897 Brussels fair.


The first three decades of World's Fairs since the first in London's Hyde Park in 1851 had been dominated by the capital cities of London and Paris, but by the end of the third decade and into the fourth, the roster of host cities was expanded, not only to European capitals, but other cities that wanted to test their international qualifications. Antwerp in 1885 would begin that test for Belgium, one it would continue to test with fairs in 1894 and 1930. Centuries before, Antwerp had been a city of world stature, and the upper class of the city wanted to prove that again. For the merchants, they wanted to promote the harbor, colonial trade, and Belgian industry.







International Inventions Exhibition              South Kensington Exhibition

The exhibitors are all together, having their stands in the East Quadrant, or Crescent Annexe, near the great Music Hall.

The International Inventions Exhibition was a world's fair held in South Kensington in 1885. As with the earlier exhibitions in a series of fairs in South Kensington following the Great Exhibition, Queen Victoria was patron and her son Albert Edward, the Prince of Wales, was president of the organising committee.

It opened on 4 May and three and three-quarters of a million people had visited when it closed 6 months later.

Countries participating included Austria-Hungary, Italy, Japan and the United States as well as the hosts, the United Kingdom. Attractions included pleasure gardens, fountains and music as well as inventions. One series of concerts including old instruments from Belgium. Other historical exhibits included five heliographs by Niépce with modern photographers such as Captain Thomas Honywood also being present. Inventions included folding tables, the Sussex trug, lacquer covered wire from Oki Electric Industry Co., Ltd., a meter from Ferranti and a 38-stop organ equipped with a new floating-lever pneumatic action.



Colonial and Indian Exhibition


The American Exhibition

The exhibition, which is to be opened in London on the 1st of May, 1886, promises to be one of the chief attractions of the metropolis during the summer and autumn of that year. The exhibition will be exclusively illustrative of American products, inventions and manufactures and according to a description just issued of the general plan to be adopted will be arranged in a novel and interesting manner. With the co-operation of the Governors of States and of the principal American Railway Companies, the committee hope to be able to so arrange the hall as to give the visitor a complete representation of what is best worth seeing on the journey from New York to San Francisco. The entrance to the exhibition will consist of a model of New York Harbour with the Bartholdi statue of Liberty and from thence the progress through the hall will be made as much as possible like a journey from the Atlantic to the Pacific seaboard on a small scale. The decision to hold the exhibition has, we understand, been received with something like enthusiasm on the other side of the Atlantic and applications for over a hundred thousand square feet of exhibiting space have already been received by the committee. It is expected that the contribution of the United States Government to the New Orleans Exhibition will be sent en bloc to the forthcoming exhibition in London. The promoters of the undertaking are to be congratulated on the encouragement they have so far received. As the time approaches for completing the programme, the applications for space will be still more numerous. The success of the exhibition is much to be desired, as, in the event of the best hopes of the committee being realised, good feeling between England and America would undoubtedly be promoted.



International Exhibition of Industry, Science and Art.      F&R




Adelaide Jubilee International Exhibition.                      F&R







AMERICAN EXHIBITION      (May 9, 1887)


First International Sewing Machine

and Domestic Appliances Exhibition

opened on the 12th November and closed on the 26th November



Bologna Exhibition.


1888  MELBOURNE, Victoria 

Victorian Juvenile Industrial Exhibition.                         F&R



The 1888 Barcelona Universal Exposition                                                   (Exposición Universal de Barcelona in Spanish) was Spain's first International World's Fair and ran from May 20 to December 9, 1888. It was also the first of the two held in Barcelona (the second one being in 1929).


Sevententh Annual Exhibition. Inter-State Industrial Exhibition



1889  PARIS 



The Exposition Universelle was a World's Fair held in Paris, France from 6 May to 31 October 1889.






Sewing Machines present at the Exposition Universelle






1889  MUNICH




1890  LONDON

The Silk Association of Great Britain and Ireland

1890  TURIN  ( ITALY )

Prima Esposizione Italiana di Architettura




Agricultural Hall

The Leather Trades Exhibition held in April 1892 at the Agricultural Hall, London, N., was generally voted a complete success. There were numerous exhibits of shoe machinery by various firms ; also of boots and shoes and leather. In the former we observed that machinery for finishing occupied most of the space at disposal. Nor is this to be wondered at, as machines never strike, and finishers of late have been too prone to adopt this arbitrary manner of settling disputes with their employers. Inventors have therefore turned their attention to the production of machines which will dispense with most of the manual labour in finishing, and ingenious in the extreme are many of their appliances. We have not the space, however, to do more than notice the sewing machines. The two principal exhibitions of sewing machinery were those of the Wheeler and Wilson Manufacturing Company, and the Singer Manufacturing Company.


Egyptian Hall

London, exhibition.From the 20th to the 25th June 1892.




The Sewing and Domestic Machine's Show

Crystal Palace  January 20th to 28th

Sewing Machines present at the Exhibition



World's Columbian Exposition 1893 Chicago World's Fair.

May 1st to October 30th, 1893

The following companies, named in the order of their age, were represented by exhibits of sewing machines for domestic purposes in the World’s Columbian Exposition:

The Singer Manufacturing Company

Domestic Sewing Machine Company

Davis Sewing Machine Company

New Home Sewing Machine Company

White Sewing Machine Company

Household Sewing Machine Company

Williams Manufacturing Company

National Sewing Machine Company

Standard Sewing Machine Company

Tracy Sewing Machine Company

Self-Threading Sewing Machine Company



1894  LYON

Exposition internationale et coloniale.

1894  OPORTO

Exposição Insular e Colonial Portuguesa.


1896  BERLIN

Great Industrial Exposition of Berlin.

Opening 1 May 1896 Closure 15 October 1896

1896  GENEVA

Palace of the Colonies, Brussels
Palace of the Colonies, Brussels



Brussels International Exposition (Exposition Internationale de Bruxelles) of 1897 was a World's Fair held in Brussels, Belgium, from May 10, 1897 through November 8, 1897. There were 27 participating countries, and an estimated attendance of 7.8 million people.


The main venues of the fair were the Cinquantenaire Parks and a colonial section at Tervuren showcasing King Leopold II of Belgium's personal property, the Congo Free State. The two exposition sites were linked by a purpose-built tramway.





1898  OMAHA  (United States)

1900  PARIS

The Exposition Universelle of 1900 was a world's fair held in Paris, France, from 15 April to 12 November 1900, to celebrate the achievements of the past century and to accelerate development into the next. The style that was universally present in the Exposition was Art Nouveau. The fair, visited by nearly 50 million, displayed many machines, inventions, and architecture that are now nearly universally known, including the Grande Roue de Paris Ferris wheel, Russian nesting dolls, diesel engines, talking films,escalators, and the telegraphone (the first magnetic audio recorder).



1902  HANOI

Indo China Exposition Française et Internationale.





1904  St. LOUIS  (United States)

1905 LIEGE (Belgium)

No sewing machines or cycles of either English or American make are on view. Germany, however, is represented by the following sewing machine manufacturers : Gritzner, Baer and Rempel, Mundlos, Durkopp and Lintz, and Eckhardt. Seidel and Naumann are also exhibiting, but only their" Ideal " typewriter.

1905  LONDON

Furniture Manufacturers' Exhibition, Earl's Court, February 28th to March 9th.

Furnishing Trades' Exhibition,Royal Agricultural Hall. April 4th to 14th.



Exposition coloniale.

1906 MILAN




1907 NORFOLK (United States)


1909 SEATTLE (United States)




1911 TURIN  


1913 GHENT (Belgium)








1922-3  Rio de Janeiro (Brazil)


1929 Seville (Spain)




1930 Liège (Belgium)


1930 Antwerp (Belgium)


1933-1934 Chicago (United States)


1935 Brussels (Belgium)


1937 Paris (France)


1939 New York City (United States)


1939 Liège Exposition Internationale(Belgium)


1939/1940 San Francisco (United States)





1962 Seattle (United States)

1964/65 NEW YORK


1968 San Antonio (United States)

1970 OSAKA (Japan)

1974 Spokane (United States)

1975 Naha (Japan)

1982 Knoxville (United States)


1985 Tsukuba (Japan)


1988 Brisbane (Australia)

1992 Seville (Spain)

1992 GENOA  (Italy)

1993 Daejeon (South Korea)


2000 Hannover (Germany)

2005 Aichi (Japan)


2010 Shanghai (China)

2012 Yeosu (South Korea)

2015 MILAN

2017 Astana (Kazakhstan)

2020 DUBAI (United Arab Emirates)

source :


Sewing Machine Gazette

As reproduction of  Historical artifacts, this works may contain errors of spelling and/or missing words and/or missing pages, poor pictures, etc.