Finally broke down and bought an online instruction manual for the little bugger.
I'm so used to using a Singer that won't let you put the needle in wrong that when I put the needle in the Dressmaker originally and it went in, I just tightened the screw and thought I was good.
Once I read the instruction manual and got the needle right . . . and snapped the thread into the bobbin case (and I mean SNAPPED), it ran like a champ. Nice straight and zig zag stitching.
It's a nice feeling to know that I got it running again.
It now has a new home with my co-worker who will love it way more then I did.