Yes. You were very, very correct. The Featherweight needle goes in with flat part to the left, and threaded from right to left --not like the modern machine. It sews "like a charm" now--exactly why I had it reconditioned. You see, it was given to me by my aunt and, what a surprise to come upon it when cleaning out and trying to find one for an affordable price, didn't know I still had it, leave alone that it was a Featherweight.
That's the wonderful thing this board is all about.