Jan Ernst Matzeliger: Shoe Lasting Machine

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Matzeliger set out to find a solution to the problems he discerned in the shoemaking process. He thought there had to be a way to develop an automatic method for lasting shoes. He began coming up with designs for machines that could do the job. After experimenting with several models, he applied for a patent on a “lasting machine.”

On March 20, 1883, Matzeliger received patent number 274,207 for his machine. The mechanism held a shoe on a last, pulled the leather down around the heel, set and drove in the nails, and then discharged the completed shoe. It had the capacity to produce 700 pairs of shoes a day—more than 10 times the amount typically produced by human hands.

http://www.biography.com/people/jan-matzeliger-21317107#invention-of-the-lasting-machine

http://www.blackpast.org/aah/matzeliger-jan-e-1852-1887

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