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Singer Factories - St. John’s, Quebec, Canada

The Singer sewing machine factory in Saint-Jean-sur-Richelieu, Quebec, Canada was established in 1904 at a cost of $1,000,000. Production started in 1906 and continued until it was closed in 1986.

Aerial View

Aerial View of St. John's Factory

 

The works was located between Saint-Louis and Saint-Paul and comprised of more than 18 separate fire proof buildings on 45 acres of ground. It had a floor area of over 12 acres and 5 miles of railway track were laid on the premises. At its peak in the 1950’s and 1960’s it employed around 3000 people.

Site Plan

Plan of St. John's Factory

 

This integrated manufacturing plant produced sewing machinery together with its associated wooden furniture. At one time only the needles were not manufactured in St. John’s and had to be imported. Machines made in St John’s were sold in Canada and also exported to the Philippines and Congo.

During 1954 when the plant celebrated its 50th anniversary, the plant employed approx. 1500 people under the management of the Works Manager, Ralph P Benn.

In later years part assembled machines were sometimes imported from the Kilbowie factory in Scotland to be finished off in St. John’s for the Canadian market. Some machines badged as being made in St John’s are known to have Kilbowie serial numbers.

Until 1924 serial numbers for machines made in Canada were issued by the Elizabethport factory in New Jersey, USA.

 

Elizabethport Issued Serial Number Dates were:

From Number To Number Quantity Model Allocation Date
         
H742351 H743850 1500 15-30 26 September 1906
H984001 H986000 2000 15-30 26 December 1906
H986001 H1006000 20000 26 December 1906  
H1137051 H1142050 5000 15 7 March 1907
H1372801 H1397800 25000 28 11 June 1907
H1458801 H1463800 5000 28 13 July 1907
H1615401 H1619400 4000 15-30 14 September 1907
H1678401 H1683400 5000 28-3 11 October 1907
D1143101 D1153100 10000 15 13 July 1909
G828701 G830700 2000 15 17 November 1910
G877001 G907000 30000 27 30 December 1910
G907001 G922000 15000 15 30 December 1910
G922001 G927000 5000 28 30 December 1910
G1641651 G1673650 32000 27 20 December 1911
G2426101 G2433100 7000 28 10 October 1912
G2574401 G2579400 5000 15 6 January 1913
G2579401 G2584400 5000 115 6 January 1913
G2584401 G2609400 25000 27 6 January 1913
G3418351 G3423350 5000 15 22 January 1914
G3579476 G3599475 20000 127 22 April 1914
G3793226 G3797225 4000 115 21 August 1914
G4038251 G4048250 10000 127 21 April 1915
G4169091 G4175090 6000 127 29 September 1915
G4348216 G4373215 25000 15 29 December 1915
G4373216 G4398215 25000 127 29 December 1915
G4717641 G4719640 2000 115 12 June 1916
G4948471 G4950470 2000 115 20 October 1916
G5761496 G5767495 6000 15 2 October 1917
G7550226 G7553225 3000 15-30 6 December 1919
G7637951 G7662950 25000 15-30 23 December 1919
G8179076 G8199075 20000 15 31 July 1920
G8585551 G8620550 35000 15-30 28 January 1921
G9037301 G9042300 5000 115-1 26 September 1921
G9452701 G9462700 10000 127 3 June 1922
G9467801 G9487800 20000 15 7 August 1922
G9851226 G9871225 5000 127-3 23 February 1923
G9876726 G9896725 20000 15-30 5 March 1923
G9995231 G9999999 4769 115-1 4 May 1923
G9851226 G9871225 5000 127-3 23 February 1923
G9876726 G9896725 20000 15-30 5 March 1923
G9995231 G9998116 2885 115-1 4 May 1923
G9998117 G9999999 1882 15-30 4 May 1923
G10172776 G10202775 30000 15-30 9 August 1923
G10202776 G10212775 10000 127-3 9 August 1923
G10561401 G10566400 5000 128-3 22 December 1923
G10678176 G10698175 20000 15-30 13 March 1924
G10698176 G10705675 7500 128 17 March 1924
G10705676 G10708175 2500 15-30 17 March 1924

 

After 1924 the St. John’s factory issued its own serial numbers which took the form of JA, JB, JC etc. followed by 6 digits starting at 000001 up to 999999. Also after this date, model numbers were identifed with a ‘J’ suffix after the Class number.

Jx Series Serial Number Dates were:

Serial Number Prefix Years
   
JA 1924 - 1936
JB 1936 - 1948
JC 1948 - 1954
JD 1954 - 1961
JE 1961 - 19??