In 1860 Isaac sailed on Isambard Kingdom Brunel's ship, The Great Eastern on her return maiden voyage to England. Leaving the liner at a French port he made his way to Paris. He soon felt quite at home in Paris and had no trouble with the language, especially when he met a young lady of 19 years called Isabella Eugenie Boyer, a divorcee, and the daughter of the inn keepers where he was staying. Isaac was now 49, very wealthy and in love again. Together they toured the sights and cities of Europe, combining business and pleasure as Isaac found new outlets for the Singer Sewing Machine Company. They travelled to England and to Scotland where, in 1867 the company opened a factory in Glasgow to assemble the sewing machines. Later in 1884 they moved to a new premises on Clydeside.

They also visited lovely Devonshire, staying in the city of Exeter. As 1862 drew to a close, Isabella discovered she was "enceinte" with child, so Isaac decided it was time to return to America and to marry. The wedding took place in St.John the Evangelist Church, New York on 13th of June 1863. a month later, on the 25th July, their first child Adam Mortimer was born in the Castle. Issac had had the castle built at Yonkers on the St. Lawrence Strait, off the Hudson River, and it was here also that their daughter Winneretta Eugenie was born on the 8th January 1865.

Isaac was very happy. He had a lovely wife with two young children and enough money to live a life of luxury. He commissioned a "sociable" which was bright yellow in colour and built like a motor coach without an engine. The horse power, supplied by black stallions and it had accommodation for thirty two people. One section was a smoking room, another was a nursery where the younger children could play and rest, and a third section was a cloakroom and toilet. There was also plenty of room to sit and talk.

Isaac would drive through the streets and avenues of New York, stopping to pick up his "other" children and their friends, he would take them to school or to visit his home. Mrs. Isabella Singer was a very understanding wife! She encouraged her husband to bring home his "other children", but not their mothers!

Proud of what he had achieved, Isaac and Isabella invited the New York society people to musical evenings and dinner parties, but their invitations were ignored by the Nobs and Swells of New York because, rough Isaac was a millionaire, he had no breeding.

Mary Ann who had been spurned by Isaac, married a Mr. Foster in 1862. Isaac had given her a house for her and their children. Mary Ann was persuaded by her lawyer to leave the house for a few days and to take her children, and was given 1800 dollars. She was tricked out of her house and clothing, and not allowed to return, by her own lawyer and by Isaac's.

Frowned on and ignored by New York society, Isaac decided to take his new family and leave America for good. He was very angry. The firm of I.M.Singer & Company became the Singer Manufacturing Company. Isaac and Edward Clarke sold their interest for shares in the company and, in 1866, Mr and Mrs Singer sailed for France on the American Liner "The Washington" when, on board ship, their third child was born, a boy, whom they called Washington Merritt Grant Singer. Grant after General Grant of the Northern Army, who later became President of the United States of America.

War was raging between North and South America and the Singer's had given General Grant 1,000 sewing machines to help the war effort. Isaac and Isabella arrived in Paris and settled into their new home at 83 Bis Boulevard, Malesherbes, with their three children. Their fourth child, a boy, was born in 1867, whom they named Paris Eugene after the city of his birth.

Isabelle Blanche was born in 1869, followed by their fourth boy and sixth child in February 1870, and they called him Franklin Morse. War had started between the French and the Prussian's and as they gained ground near Paris, Isaac decided that they should leave for the safety of England.

They fled their lovely home leaving most of their clothes and furnishings behind them. They arrived together with other evacuees, in London in January 1871. Franklin was nearly one year old.



© copyright Dorothy Atkinson

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