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Dating Your Singer Featherweight Machine

What is the Birthdate of My Singer Featherweight?

To date your Singer Featherweight, you will need to locate the serial number on the bottom of your machine.  It has two letters followed by a series of six numbers.  Using the serial number you can use the charts below to find the date when your machine was given a batch assignment at the factory.  If you do not find your machine serial number listed in the charts, then further in the text below will be more references and info.


  
Most serial numbers are found on the bottom of a Featherweight
next to the bottom tray (left photo),
but a few of the early AD models are found
inside & underneath the bottom tray (right photo).



There is a long propounded myth that the Singer Company can pinpoint the very day of manufacture of its machines. Not true. The date given as a "birthdate" is simply the day on which vast batches of serial numbers were released to the various factories.

The dates given below are the days on which those batches were started, together with the number of machines in each consignment. The first Featherweights batched in 1933 begin with the two-letter prefix 'AD'.  By checking when the next batch was started, it's possible to get a fairly accurate date of when any particular machine might have left the assembly line.

Featherweights having serial numbers that begin with the prefix letter 'A' were made in Elizabethport, New Jersey, whereas those that begin with the prefix letter 'E' were manufactured in Kilbowie, Scotland.  Featherweights having serial numbers that begin with the letter 'J' were mostly made at the St. John's, Quebec Factory in Canada.  Singer Featherweights made outside of the US were also given a suffix to their actual model number.  Those manufactured in Kilbowie were modeled given the model number 221K and those manufactured in St. John's were given the model number 221J.


In Summary:

AD = prefix of serial numbers assigned to the first Featherweights manufactured, beginning in 1933
Serial Number prefixes beginning with letter 'A' = manufactured in Elizabethport, New Jersey, USA
Serial Number prefixes beginning with letter 'E' = manufactured in Kilbowie, Scotland, United Kingdom
Serial Number prefixes beginning with letter 'J' = manufactured in St. John's, Quebec, Canada
(a few were partially manufactured in Kilbowie and then sent to Canada for finishing)

Models 221 (or 221-1) = manufactured in Elizabethport, New Jersey, USA
Models 221K = manufactured in Kilbowie, Scotland, United Kingdom
Models 221J = manufactured in St. John's, Quebec, Canada
(a few were partially manufactured in Kilbowie and then sent to Canada for finishing)

With the exception of motor voltage, belt drive and some minor cosmetic differences, all 221 models remained fundamentally the same from 1933 through the 1960's.  A Featherweight 221 is a 221 is a 221.  You can refer to the Featherweight Historical Timeline for more details about those changes.


For sake of easy reference, only the serial numbers that correlate to Singer Featherweights are included in the three charts below.  If your Featherweight number series is not listed it could mean 1 of 3 things:
  1.  Your machine is different than a Singer Featherweight model.  Please refer to question #1 on our FAQs page for the notable characteristics of a Featherweight.
  2.  Your machine truly is a Featherweight, but the records were lost or not accurately recorded at the old Singer factories.
  3. Your Featherweight is among the few that were mis-stamped.
    If the latter 2 of the 3 possibilities, then the two letter prefix can be used to reference the approximate date estimation based on the serial number sequences.

 

If viewing the chart below on a mobile device, it is best viewed horizontally.

Singer Featherweight 221 Machines (Black)

Prefix Series Sequence Batch Quantity Commission Date Year
AD 541546 - 551545 10,000 October 3rd 1933
AD 720746 - 730745 10,000 September 10th 1934
AD 781846 - 791845 10,000 November 27th 1934
AD 880156 - 890155 10,000 March 18th 1935
AD 937406 - 947405 10,000 June 24th 1935
AD 996956 - 999999 3044 September 23rd 1935
AE 000001 - 007000 7000 September 23rd 1935
AE 054366 - 064365 10,000 December 30th 1935
AE 076516 - 086515 10,000 March 25th 1936
AE 207616 - 222615 15,000 July 13th 1936
AE 294041 - 309040 15,000 November 5 1936
AE 407941 - 422940 15,000 March 15 1937
AE 536641 - 556640 20,000 June 11th 1937
AE 770591 - 790590 20,000 December 8th 1937
AF 070706 - 090705 20,000 October 10th 1938
AF 161806 - 181805 20,000 February 15th 1939
AF 244106 - 264105 20,000 July 11th 1939
AF 371856 - 391855 20,000 December 5th 1939
AF 477181 - 497180 20,000 April 10th 1940
AF 571881 - 596880 25,000 August 15th 1940
AF 740751 - 760750 20,000 January 7th 1941
AF 863951 - 883950 20,000 April 1st 1941
AF* 907451 - 942450* **** May 14th* 1941
AF 998251 - 999999 1749 July 1st 1941
AG 000001 - 018250 18,250 July 1st 1941
AG 526101 - 546100 20,000 September 19th 1945
AG 602856 - 622855 20,000 February 18th 1946
AG 689391 - 709390 20,000 June 4th 1946
AG 804771 - 824770 20,000 September 16th 1946
AG 848346 - 858345 10,000 October 25th 1946
AG 869446 - 889445 20,000 November 22nd 1946
AG 970946 - 990945 20,000 February 19th 1947
AH 050371 - 070370 20,000 April 22nd 1947
AH 11971 - 131970 20,000 June 26th 1947
AH 193771 - 223770 30,000 August 19th 1947
AH 316071 - 346070 30,000 October 28th 1947
AH 413571 - 443570 30,000 January 22nd 1948
AH 550921 - 580920 30,000 April 20th 1948
AH 640321 - 670320 30,000 June 18th 1948
AH 799121 - 829120 30,000 October 1st 1948
AH 973921 - 999999 26,079 December 9th 1948
AJ 000001 - 013920 13,920 December 9th 1948
AJ 103721 - 143720 40,000 March 15th 1949
AJ 189171 - 229170 40,000 November 18th 1949
AJ 348371 - 388370 40,000 January 23rd 1950
AJ 552721 - 592720 40,000 March 31st 1950
AJ 615621 - 655620 40,000 June 1st 1950
AJ 781321 - 821320 40,000 August 22nd 1950
AJ 887721 - 937720 50,000 October 26th 1950
AK 071321 - 121320 50,000 January 29th 1951
AK 389576 - 439575 50,000 May 10th 1951
AK 576776 - 626775 50,000 October 31st 1951
AK 745676 - 795675 50,000 February 20th 1952
AK 984876 - 999999 15,124 August 11th 1952
AL 000001 - 034875 34,875 August 11th 1952
AL 158501 - 208500 50,000 December 12th 1952
AL 389361 - 439360 50,000 May 4th 1953
AL 524941 - 574940 50,000 October 14th 1953
AL 689041 - 739040 50,000 April 22nd 1954
AL 900891 - 950890 50,000 January 17th 1955
AM 137761 - 187760 50,000 June 10th 1955
AM 361036 - 411035 50,000 February 27th 1956
AM 652586 - 702585 50,000 January 29th 1957
AM 77106 - 821105 50,000 September 27th 1957
EE 000152 - 152720 500 August 25th 1947
EE 452721 - 453220 500 December 24th 1947
EE 458241 - 459240 1000 January 22nd 1948
EE 573424 - 578423 5000 May 14th 1948
EE 802479 - 807478 5000 September 21st 1948
EE 853479 - 863478 10,000 December 10th 1948
EF 154176 - 164175 10,000 Mary 23rd 1949
EF 278731 - 288730 10,000 August 17th 1949
EF 558931 - 568930 10,000 November 7th 1949
EF 688016 - 698015 10,000 February 14th 1950
EF 700569 - 710568 10,000 April 24th 1950
EF 907629 - 917628 10,000 July 19th 1950
EG 072001 - 082000 10,000 October 9th 1950
EG 302861 - 312860 10,000 December 18th 1951
EG 343861 - 353860 10,000 February 15th 1951
EG 433821 - 444820 11,000 March 29th 1951
EG 637821 - 647820 10,000 May 16th 1951
EG 703321 - 713320 10,000 July 17th 1951
EG 957781 - 967780 10,000 October 17th 1951
EH 001027 - 011026 10,000 December 18th 1951
EH 132547 - 142546 10,000 February 29th 1952
EH 236097 - 246096 10,000 April 28th 1952
EH 370347 - 380346 10,000 July 22nd 1952
EH 625778 - 635777 10,000 October 8th 1952
EH 890433 - 900432 10,000 March 4th 1953
EJ 211989 - 216988 5000 September 4th 1953
EK 203139 - 213138 10,000 February 14th 1955
EK 986373 - 991372 5000 December 20th 1955
EL 537735 - 542734 5000 June 13th 1956
EM 016257 - 021256 5000 January 8th 1957
EM 596007 - 601006 5000 August 2nd 1957
EN 235134 - 238133 3000 April 17th 1958
EN 826834 - 829333 2500 October 27th 1958
EP 256021 - 257520 1500 May 18th 1959
ES 170544 - 175543 5000 November 3rd 1960
ES 239244 - 249243 10,000 January 10th 1961
ES 648144 - 658143 10,000 May 15th 1961
ES 873744 - 883743 10,000 August 19th 1961
ET 061345 - 071344 10,000 November 2nd 1961

**** This batch was actually assigned to a different Singer model altogether, but there have been a few bona fide Singer Featherweights having serial numbers within this number sequence.

Singer Featherweight White 221K / Tan 221J Machines

(Additional Information)

 EV 776991 - 826990 50,000 March 3rd 1964
EV 846*** - 99**** inconclusive ※ 1964
EW 061691 - 071690 10,000 August 6th 1968
EY 84**** - 99**** inconclusive ※ ?
※ see text below ※
FA 098*** - 132*** inconclusive ※ 1968 / 69
FA 202*** - 288*** inconclusive ※ 1968 / 69
JE 150000 - 162000** inconclusive ※ 1961


**Singer Sewing Machine models within this JE batch of serial numbers were made in 1961.  A few Singer Featherweights were included in this series.

The dates provided cannot be guaranteed, of course, but are probably as good as we will ever find.  Some of the fine details are officially inconclusive (serial numbers were either misrecorded, applied to the wrong batch or the records were lost/destroyed with the old factories).  Graham Forsdyke worked with the Singer Company directly to remove some of the errors and fix the anomalies in the old chart records, but some have still been found, especially in the post ET serial number sequences. Sometimes you might find a rogue 221, for example, in a batch of 50,000 99K machines.  That simply means that there were some Featherweights within that group of numbers, but it doesn't indicate with which number the group started or ended or how many 221 machines were involved.

Graham did not include data on his website for the white/green machines or the few Featherweights made in Canada because dating records were apparently too inaccurate to source. 
For additional reference and a few more dates for those later year machines, however, we have included some of these dating records in the charts above, sourced from JJ & Leo's Featherweight 221 Factory site as well as singersewinginfo.co.uk's site.  We would be pleased to receive any comments or corrections, just be aware that most of the seeming anomalies come from an inaccurate readings of the original documentation which were sometimes taken from poorly stamped serial numbers.


Singer Featherweight 222K Free-Arm Machines


EJ 142734 - 142833 100 July 23rd 1953
EJ 211839 - 211988 150 September 2nd 1953
EJ 219989 - 220138 150 September 22nd 1953
EJ 223639 - 223838 200 October 1st 1953
EJ 225839 - 226038 200 October 14th 1953
EJ 226039 - 226438 400 October 21st 1953
EJ 236439 - 236638 200 October 29th 1953
EJ 266639 - 271638 5000 November 18th 1953
EJ 616272 - 626271 10,000 March 31st 1954
EJ 908425 - 918424 10,000 September 10th 1954
EK 319939 - 329938 10,000 March 14th 1955
EK 628163 - 638162 10,000 August 16th 1955
EL 176520 - 186519 10,000 March 2nd 1956
EL 681756 - 686755 5000 September 17th 1956
EM 234470 - 239469 5000 February 26th 1957
EM 601007 - 606006 5000 August 2nd 1957
EM 957021 - 962020 5000 November 15th 1957
EN 134513 - 139512 5000 March 17th 1958
EP 131001 - 133500 2500 March 3rd 1959
EP 541572 - 544071 2500 September 22nd 1959
EP 758473 - 760972 2500 December 18th 1959
ER 022034 - 024533 2500 March 15th 1960
ER 316034 - 318533 2500 May 30th 1960
ER 900043 - 902542 2500 September 7th 1960
ES 165344 - 167843 2500 October 19th 1960
ES 352344 - 357343 5000 January 31st 1961
ES 522944 - 527943 5000 March 30th 1961


Some people like to find machines associated with a particular year - whether it be a birth year, anniversary, etc.  Click here for our "Birthdate Machines" chart indicating level of difficulty to find certain years.


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