The mannequin division of the USA Patent Office in Washington is illuminated here and there with the original fashions of the very great inventions.
In one of the cupboards is to be seen Morse’s unique model of the telegraph instrument, customary by his own arms. The model could be very crudely made, however it evokes reverence in the customer, and even a certain type of awe, when he pauses to think about what the telegraph has finished for the development of the world, and what a sluggish universe this is able to e if we didn’t have telegraphic communication with our fellow beings on the planet over.
In another cupboard, inspiring the identical kind of reverence, and bringing thoughts of the times when each bit of stitching on the earth was finished by hand, is Elias Howe’s model of the sewing machine. The customer unconsciously repeats to himself the phrases of the music of the shirt, “Stitch, Stitch, Stitch,” and thinks of the agony of that stitching in the days of Hood, when it was all executed by hand.
Howe’s first stitching machine is nearly as crude as Morse’s telegraph sounder, but in both instances the model operated precisely as described in the specs, and the patents have been accordingly granted.
Not a whit much less fascinating is the model of the primary typewriter, the invention of R. T. P. Allen, a Kentuckian. It’s nonetheless more roughly made than fashions of the telegraph and sewing machine, however it proved to be quite as essential an invention.