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HK-733 Mechanics Fair Centennial (Goodyear Welt & Turned Shoes)

Numerous references are made to a Mechanics Fair in Boston MA between 1795 and 1895. In 1853, the New York Times described new mechanical inventions at the Mechanics Fair in Boston, including the gas stove, the sewing machine, and wood planing machines. Comparisons of this fair with the Crystal Palace (HK-5) in New York City were made at various points in history, which is of historical interest. In 1895, the Journal "Machinery" (Vol. 2) published by the Industrial Press in NYC described a "Centennial Mechanics Fair" being held in Boston, including descriptions of Fluorescent Lighting and other sources described a machine for shoe manufacturing by Goodyear (the Goodyear Welt Shoe process). There also appear to be references to a fair that was referred to as the "Massachusetts Charitable Mechanics Association (MCMA)" Fair in some sources. There appear to be numerous references to artwork exhibits at this fair -- "these fairs in 1878, 1881, and 1884 were without a doubt some of the most important exhibitions of art held in America at the time." A fairly nice summary of this fair can be found at this link:

It is a little unclear which "fair" the medal HK-733 refers to -- perhaps they are one and the same. Attached is a second Goodyear Welt Token from Akron OH (R-OH-AK-3) suggesting this particular invention was recognized on a national scale. Does anyone have any additional information about HK-733 or these fairs?

Uploaded files:
  • Akron.jpeg

Comment from Bill G:

Most of us get a HK-733 Goodyear Welt So Called then try to figure out why all the other Goodyear Welts aren't listed only to be told that it is because it is a centennial/anniversary piece and that the rest are considered merchant trade tokens. I don't think that many collectors realize that this pictured token qualifies for inclusion for the same reason. We are familiar with Haverhill for its 1915 275th Anniversary So Called HK-665. Haverhill has many tokens of 1640 to almost every date 250 anniv 275anniv 300anniv 350anniv but they are all 32mm. This pictured So Called stands out for inclusion because of the large 1640-1890 prominently on the obverse. The 1640 is the date always claimed for founding of Haverhill in 1640 and one of oldest in Mass. With the patent date of the goodyear welt, the no brainer fact is that the first/main shoe plant manufacturing facility was established in Haverhill in the mid 1880's. Most claims are 1887. In 1915 the date of the 275th anniversary Goodyear Welt Plant was acknowledged by most as the leading employer of Haverhill. Plant was originally located Havershill due to its leading seaport status for water/rail shpping at that time.