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Not much is known about the life of Thomas Saint, the London cabinet maker who usually takes credit for patenting the first sewing machine in 1790. The patent was ponderously entitled, "An Entire New Method of Making and Completing Shoes, Boots, Splatterdashes, Clogs, and Other Articles, by Means of Tools and Machines also Invented by Me for that Purpose, and of Certain Compositions of the Nature of Japan or Varnish, which will be very advantageous in many useful Appliances." People overlooked it for 83 years because it was classed under wearing apparel. The patent contains, among many other things, descriptions of three separate machines; the second of these was for "stitching, quilting, or sewing." Though far from practical, the machine incorporated several features common to a modern sewing machine.
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