Sewing Machine Research
ISMACS International
International Sewing Machine Collectors' Society

Knocking Copy...

The art of producing advertising copy that denigrates the opposition is no recent innovation as this poem from the 1860-70 period shows.


Just one month had Dorinda been married to me,
When the dear little puss came and sat on my knee,
With the cunningest "peepers" that ever was seen,
Whispered: "Hubbie, I must have a sewing machine."
Of course I consented: - what new husband wouldn't?
If it cost me a thousand, deny her I couldn't
So I asked my pet blandly what kind I should bring her,
And wisely, I thought, suggested a "Singer".
"Oh Dickey, how can you?" she cried with a pout,
"Why it's noisy and slow, I won't have it about;
And for goodness' sake don't mention a 'Grover & Baker';"
She said it so cross I'd a good mind to shake her;
"Nor a 'Wheeler and Wilson' - it sews good one minute,
But the next thing you know, the Old Harry gets in it.
Now, Dick, when I went with mamma to the Fair,
I saw such a duck, oh! the sweetest thing there!
'Twas a sprite - 'twas an elf - 'Twas a fairy incarnate,
With a speed - "here I interrupted, "O darn it,
A truce to your high-flown poetical fibs'
What's it's name, love?"
"Why, Dickey, it is 'WILLCOX & GIBBS';
As I was just saying, this dear little elf,
(To be prosy like you) is perfection itself;
It never breaks thread, never bores you with skipping,
Is noiseless and rapid, its work never ripping."
"Eureka," I shouted, "put on your things quick";
"You will buy me one, then? oh dear, loving Dick."

Copyright Graham Forsdyke ISMACS