I have a display case in my living room, which contains some of the Gearhart Knitting Machine Company archives. Here is a photo of it.


I have a dark corner where I keep it, so that there is minimal light damage. Therefore, you probably can’t make out as many details as I’d like to show. I used my Russian fisheye lense and snapped the photo about 4 feet away, then rectified the image with some image processing software I have on my computer. There are all kinds of light-reflection-things going on here, and I decided to just leave the photo as is rather than creating a starker image. The photo is actually pretty close to actual lighting conditions.

The two most notable things in the case are Joseph E. Gearhart’s first wooden machine, manufactured in 1888. There are only two in existence. The other one showed up on eBay several years ago and then disappeared with the winning bid (never to resurface?). The other thing in this case is Emory J. Gearhart’s last Clearfield Knitting Machine. This machine is in mint condition other then some scratches on the label. The machine was made from the last 5000 machines in inventory after the company stopped making them in 1925. This machine is in great running condtion, and I’ve used it off and on since I first tried it out way back in 1975. Now days, I don’t use these machines, since I want to preserve them for as long as possible.

Here are some closeups. You can probably make out some details. The bulk of the archives is stored elsewhere. These are just a few of the items that I like to show people when they stop by for a visit. Two of the machines rest on stacks of books. One stack contains engineering etchings from the time, and the other stack is the adventures of one of my favorite authors, Alexander Von Humboldt (1769-1859). A third machine is packed inside its shipping crate.