The Hippo

HOME| ADVERTISING| CONTACT US|

 
Nov 14, 2018







NEWS & FEATURES

POLITICAL

FOOD & DRINK

ARTS

MUSIC & NIGHTLIFE

POP CULTURE



BEST OF
CLASSIFIEDS
ADVERTISING
CONTACT US
PAST ISSUES
ABOUT US
MOBILE UPDATES
LIST MY CALENDAR ITEM


Knit one, purl one
Aiken family stitches together to create knitting machine

10/09/14
By Hippo Staff news@hippopress.com



 It’s one thing to come up with a really cool idea, but another thing to be able to turn it into reality. For Herrick Aiken and his sons Walter and Jonas of Franklin, inventing was the family business. 

“It didn’t matter what the gadget was; they could see it and had the ability to manufacture it as well,” said Carol Lee Anderson, Lakes Region historian. 
In 1856, the Aikens invented a simple knitting machine that could make the tube of a sock, from knee to ankle. They moved to Laconia to be closer to the machine knitting industry and quickly started manufacturing an industrial design for the mills, which were busy making socks for soldiers.
The machine was tall and narrow with a circular disk and a latch in the middle. It stood on four legs that resemble an end table and the sock came out of the bottom, Anderson said. 
“You look at it and [think], I can’t believe that makes a sock,” she said.
It wasn’t until the 1920s that knitting the tube, heel and toe of a sock was doable by one single machine. By that time, of course, the Aikens had all already died. 
“Maybe if they had lived longer, they would have figured it out sooner,” Anderson said. 
 
As seen in the October 9, 2014 issue of the Hippo.





®2018 Hippo Press. site by wedu