Friday, February 17, 2012


My daughter in-law called me last night, saying she'd found a spinning wheel at the local thrift shop.  It had seen some use, did I want it?  The Price $50.  A Couple of camera phone photos and quick conversations later, (as it was closing time) and  I am now the proud owner of an old spinning wheel.  I had some doubts, but the price was right, and I've often hoped to find such a wheel.

Then when I saw it for the first time, I wondered if this was a mistake, No treadle or footman, no flyer, the bobbin is in really rough shape, and the end of the shaft on the wheel is bent.  I doubt she will ever spin without some expensive restoration, that I just cannot afford right now.

Bent axle extension

bobbin and bobbin shaft

Then in the process of cleaning and inspecting her, I found stamped into the base, a date. 1797!

Well, no wonder the girl was in rough shape!  I'd be lucky to look this good at  215 years old!!  She's seen some rough days, but I think she merits a place in my home.  Wow, never ever thought I'd find something this cool.

Check this out, the bobbin shaft has this tiny orifice carved into it:,
and it is made of wood!  it is also broken, about half the length it should be.  I feel it speaks to the ingenuity of our pioneer ancestors that it was ever created. 

I think she bears more research. The name stamped on her is illegible.  It looks something like this
 S_ _ MFS, The F may also be an E.  and the 1797 on the other side of the tension knob.
If anyone out there knows something more about this wheel and would like to share, I'm all ears!


  1. Beautiful! So sorry she's in such a bad shape! Hope you get her fixed soon!!!

  2. Have you tried using different camera filters (like some of the instagram ones or something similar) it might make it so you can read the initials better.