Franz & Pope Knitting Machine

Knitting Machine: Patent 88027, March 23, 1869.
By William Franz and William Pope, Crestline, OH

Set-up Device (not shown): Patent 102,529, May 3, 1870
By William Franz and William Pope, Crestline, OH

Yarn stand: Patent 123,687, Feb 13, 1872.
By William Franz, Bucyrus, OH,and William Pope, Crestline, OH


This machine has not been cleaned up. The paint has taken a dull, dusty appearance. But the paint will stay because there is a lot of good paint, and who would want to ruin such a beautiful decorative design? Not only that, but the patent dates are painted on the back side of the cylinder.

Why don't we decorate our machines like this anymore? Maybe my computer could use some of these golden flourishes. It appears that this kind of decoration disappeared after the early 1900s.


The Franz & Pope Knitter came to me in this box. It appears to be an egg crate . . . maybe. It has newspaper glued to the inside of the box that is dated 1881.

This is what you typically see at a flea market. Although the Gearhart ribber, cylinder, and yarn stand were not in this box when I got it, it did contain a leather handle from an old suitcase, an empty can from Whiz Soap, a cast iron bracket, and a rug hooking tool. Keep your eyes open at flea markets!

. . . . and just for fun, here's the Whiz Soap can.

Copyright, Ralph Kanko, 1998

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