Josef Madersperger, engraving
Madersperger, Josef, b. Kufstein (Tyrol), Oct. 6, 1768, d. Vienna, Oct. 2, 1850, tailor and inventor. In Vienna from 1790 designed and built a sewing machine. After first attempts to imitate the "sewing hand" (Vienna Technical Museum) he built his first sewing machine in 1814, with the eye at the tip of the needle, which made possible the use of an endless thread. M. made no use of the privilege awarded to him in 1815, which expired after 3 years. In 1839 he gave his sewing machine as a present to the Polytechnical Institute and was awarded a bronze medal by the Lower Austria Trade Association in 1841. He died destitute in a Vienna alms-house. It was not until 1846 that the first sewing machine was successfully introduced on the market by the American, E. Howe.
Literature: E. Attlmayr, Ti. Pioniere der Technik, 1968; ÖBL; NDB.