Historical information

The Wodonga Historical Society Haeusler Collection provides invaluable insight into life in late nineteenth and early twentieth century north east Victoria. The collection comprises manuscripts, personal artefacts used by the Haeusler family on their farm in Wodonga, and a set of glass negatives which offer a unique visual snapshot of the domestic and social lives of the Haeusler family and local Wodonga community.
The Haeusler family migrated from Prussia (Germany) to South Australia in the 1840s and 1850s, before purchasing 100 acres of Crown Land made available under the Victorian Lands Act 1862 (also known as ‘Duffy’s Land Act’) in 1866 in what is now Wodonga West. The Haeusler family were one of several German families to migrate from South Australia to Wodonga in the 1860s.|

This sewing machine belonged to Isla Ilma Margaret Ernestine neeTasker, mother of Alfred Haeusler.
Singer was first established as I. M. Singer & Co. in 1851 by Isaac Merritt Singer with New York lawyer Edward C. Clark. Best known for its sewing machines, it was renamed Singer Manufacturing Company in 1865, then the Singer Company in 1963.
The Singer company began to market its machines internationally in 1855 and won first prize at the Paris world's fair that year. They had offices established in both Sydney and Melbourne by the mid-1960s. The company demonstrated the first workable electric sewing machine in 1910. Singer was also a marketing innovator and a pioneer in promoting the use of instalment payment plans, making their machines more affordable for many people.


This item is from the Hauseler Collection which documents social life of early settlers in the Wodonga community.

Physical description

Singer "Coffin top" treadle sewing machine with extension table. The machine is mainly black and silver metal but is extensively decorated with coloured decals. The decorations on this machine features a pheasant design which also helps to date the machine as it was only used from 1890 to 1915. The sewing machine is set into a wooden table with and extension leaf and 6 drawers, 3 on either side. The frame and treadle mechanism are iron with a thin leather belt to drive the mechanism. The "coffin" shaped top sits over the machine to protect it when not in use and is easily removed. The extension leaf provides a larger working surface and folds down when not in use. The Singer logo attached to the front of the machine features a needle, shuttle and thread.

Inscriptions & markings

On metal base plate: "PATENTED /DEC 5 -1882/ MARCH 20 - 1883/ AUG - 21 1888.
Model no: L6485622
Along top of machine: "The Singer Manufacturing Co."
Front right: Singer Company Logo