Grandfather clocks

Grandfather Clock Sale Attention Service

06.17.14

Finding a grandfather clocks sale is easy.  Look just about anywhere online, and you will have the words discount, for sale, for less, sale ending soon, free gift, lowest price, most savings, and on and on and on.

So what is the 1-800-4CLOCKS difference?  At well over 90% of the places that list grandfather clocks for sale, one will find they cannot find anyone to answer any specific important questions, like the difference between Howard Miller Grandfather Clocks, Kieninger grandfather clocks, and Ridgeway and Hermle Grandfather Clocks.  What about differences not only between grandfather clock brands, but the different models made by those same makers.  And staring at a consumer everywhere will be much less expensive clocks that may look nearly identical to others.  Are they both heirloom quality grandfather clocks?  Will the chimes quality be the same from brand to brand?  Will the clocks last several generations, or simply be lucky to make the trip home and hopefully get it running.  What about questions like the difference between grandmother clocks and grandfather clocks? How much does the movement maker matter?  Should you consider buying a quartz or battery operated grandfather clock.  What is the difference between a single chime Westminster Chime grandfather clock, a triple chime grandfather clock, and what on earth is a tubular chime grandfather clock, and should I ever consider one?  What about new vs used vs antique grandfather clocks and floor clocks.  And these questions would likely be just the beginning for a thoughtful grandfather clock shopper who is trying to get a sense of the market and pros and cons of grandfather clock choices.

So you have found someone who is willing to talk with you, and knows something about grandfather clocks.  But how much?  Unless you happen on someone who is both expert and available, one could be spinning his or her wheels for a very long time. This is where the 1-800-4CLOCKS difference comes in to play.  We know all the makers, from the current high-end grandfather clock brands built to last to the “junk brands” built to get you out the door with their merchandise (and frequently not even any instruction booklet).  We know the differences between brands and within brands.  Our salespeople do not work on commission, so they are always looking to give you the best advice to get and hopefully keep you as a long-term customer who is informed about the market.  There is a lot out there that an informed person would want to avoid, and in some cases minimally go in with eyes wide open.  This is particularly true with vintage grandfather clocks, where the risk of buying a cash eating machine is all too real.

Our stores were founded by people who have a passion for clocks and watches, and we look for that in everyone who comes to work with us.  Our roots are actually in antique clocks, so we know grandfather clock history, the movement maker history, not only who the current players are but also who the historical players were, and the implications that has for chiming mechanical floor clocks made today.  This is also true for mantel clocks and wall clocks.

We know the Howard Miller and Herman Miller of today, and we also know the Howard Miller Clocks from 90 years ago.  We know Hermle Grandfather Clocks from almost 100 years ago.  We know Ridgeway grandfather clocks and grandmother clocks, not to mention Kieninger grandfather clocks, from 50 to 100 years ago.  We also know about Sligh grandfather clocks, the famous Seth Thomas regulators and grandfather clocks and wall clocks and mantel clocks, and Bulova and Americana grandfather clocks.  Plus throw in Tiffany Grandfather Clocks made over many years, all the features added over time, including illuminated dials and automatic nighttime shutoff, the changes in features like tubular chimes, and we have a virtual treasure trove of information to share the relevant tidbits to match the needs of our customers.  Additionally, we are always willing to work with a customer as best we can to match their needs and desires with realistic budgets within which they are working.

We aim to surprise and delight our customers every single day with exception service and attention to detail.  And with all that, not only will we work hard to give you best value for grandfather clocks money spent, but also still the best grandfather clock sale price available anywhere.

Grandfather Clock Service Award

 

 

 

 

 

Durfee Tubular Chime Grandfather Clocks

01.24.14

The Walter Durfee Tubular Chimes grandfather clocks were the pioneers in bringing Grandfather Clock with Tubular Chimes Clocks to the USA.  Below is an early advertisement which not only talks about these amazing Walter Durfee Tubular Chime Grandfather Clocks, referring to them as Tubular Chime Hall Clocks, but it also shows the Authorized Dealers and Agents for the patented system they have in place.  You can see the text for the Walter Durfee ad, which we estimate was from circa 1900, and the actual ad itself, also below.  Note the ad referred to these grandfather clocks as Hall Clocks.  Also, generally speaking, grandmother clocks cases would be too small to house tubular chime clock mechanisms.  Most mechanical clock tubular chimes with 5 tubes play the Westminster Chime only and with 9 tubes play triple chimes, usually including St Michaels Chime and the Whittington Chimes.

Interestingly, today tubular chime grandfather clocks are still offered, but relatively few people in the general public, and even many grandfather clock enthusiasts, know little or nothing about them.  Howard Miller Clocks offers as its most expensive grandfather clock the J.H. Miller II Tubular Chime Grandfather Clock model 611-031 or 611031, in a Limited Edition, and shown just below:

Howard Miller J. H. Miller II Grandfather Clock
List: $27,293.00
SALE: $19,105.10

The above clock is also offered without tubular chimes and still in the same amazing Limited Edition Case,  model 611-030 or 611030, and is known as the JH Miller Grandfather Clock.  Both of these clocks are more expensive than Howard Miller Presidential Edition Grandfather Clocks, which are considered by many to be the top of the line.

Howard Miller Clocks most expensive wall clock is very modern or contemporary, with an open case and tubular chimes, and named the Howard Miller Focal Point Wall Clock model 622-779 or 622779, and shown below:

Howard Miller Focal Point Wall Clock
List: $11,575.00
SALE: $8,102.50

Hermle Clocks offers some Grandfather Clocks that are also Tubular Chime Grandfather Clocks, and include these models:

Hermle Triple Tubular Chime Worcester Grandfather Clock
List: $8,097.00
SALE: $5,263.05

Hermle Triple Chime Essex Grandfather Clock
List: $18,379.00
SALE: $11,946.35

Hermle Foreman Cherry Tubular Grandfather Clock
List: $11,397.00
SALE: $7,408.05

Hermle Foreman Walnut Tubular Grandfather Clock
List: $11,397.00
SALE: $7,408.0

Hermle Anstead Walnut Tubular Grandfather Clock  Also available in Cherry and Oak wood models
List: $10,947.00
SALE: $7,115.55

Kieninger Grandfather Clocks also offers some high-end both contemporary and traditional tubular chime grandfather clocks.  An example of one contemporary Kieninger Clocks Tubular Chime Clock is shown, with model 0126-02-01, and pictured just below:

Kieninger Edwards Grandfather Clock   also comes is a brass-bronze contemporary clock case.
List: $24,130.00
SALE: $16,891.00

Some of these tubular chime grandfather clock models are the exact grandfather clocks that were offered by Sligh Grandfather Clocks and Bulova Grandfather Clocks.  Also, lead times can vary and new tubular chime grandfather clock models can be added and are sometimes discontinued.  It is always a good idea to call us at 1-800-4CLOCKS (1-800-425-6257, ext. 1) if you are thinking about purchasing one of any of these great tubular chime grandfather clocks.  At this moment, we do not have either and Walter Durfee antique tubular chime grandfather clocks or any Herschede Tubular Chime grandfather clocks. That can always change.

 

HALL CLOCKS.   This is the Walter Durfee Tubular Chime Grandfather Clocks Ad also showing authorized agents.  Picture of actual ad is farther down below with text just below:

Do you want something that will last? The most beautiful Wedding Present that can be given is something that will speak for the donor fifty to one hundred years.

Can you spend the amount and get more satisfaction for your money than by purchasing a beautiful Tubular Chiming Clock? The Tubular Chimes are like the chimes of a Cathedral from a distance. Changes of the weather do not affect them, as the tone is produced by the bell and does not depend on a sounding board.

These Tubular Chiming Clocks are fully protected by Letters Patent, and persons purchasing should see that every bell is stamped with our name.

They are sold only by our authorized Agents, and any infringement of our rights is subject to heavy royalty on either buyer or seller.

Clocks imported with Tubular Bells come under this infringement, as we control all U.S. Rights.

The List of Agents given below speaks for the superior quality of these clocks. Each Agent has Photographs of all our designs, which they will forward by mail on application.

AGENTS:

Theodore B. Starr, New-York,   Woods & Hosley, Springfield.

Spaulding & Co. Chicago.  Tilden, Thurber & Co. Providence.

Bailey, Banks & Biddle, Philadelphia.  Henry A. Turner & Go. Boston.

Jas. E. Caldwell & Co. “   Bradstreet, Thurber & Co. Minneapolis.

J. C. Grogan, Pittsburgh  Frank Herschede, Cincinnati.

Wright, Kay & Co. Detroit.     Jaccard Watch & Jewelry Co. Kansas City.

The Cowell & Hubbard Co. Cleveland.  Mermod & Jaccard Jewelry Co. St. Louis.

WALTER H. DURFEE & CO. Providence, Rhode Island

Durfee Tubular Grandfather Clock

Walter Durfee Tubular Chime Grandfather Clock

 



 

 

 

 

Hermle Clocks History

12.30.13

Hermle Clocks North America

Welcome to Hermle Clocks’ History.  Hermle Clock builds beautiful clocks of all kinds, including grandfather clocks, floor clocks, anniversary clocks, grandmother clocks, wall clocks, mantle clocks, cuckoo clocks and specialty clocks including Telleriums and Astrolabiums.  Mechanical chime playing clock movements, as well as quartz operated movements, are one key specialty.

In 1977, Hermle Black Forest Clocks located in the scenic foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains manufactured and shipped its first
Hermle mechanical movement on US soil.  It was the beginning of how the modern era of the clock industry was going to proceed.  Hermle supplied many of the existing clock case goods manufacturers with its sought after German quality mechanisms. Many of Hermle Clocks customers received training of our expertise in the assembly of their case goods.  Naturally, in the early 1980′s, Hermle Clocks was asked to assemble our movements into our customers cases which then became a staple of our production line.

In 2002, we opened our doors to the clock retail industry with Hermle branded clocks, including Hermle grandfather clocks, being assembled in our factory in Amherst, Virginia, and a selection of German made Hermle clocks.  After 6 expansions to our factory, Hermle continued our growth as not only the world’s leader in clock mechanisms, but as an alternative grandfather clock, wall clock and mantel clock source to the retailers of North America.

Our innovations in design, form and function keep Hermle Clock ahead of the curve and its meticulous quality improvements have made
Hermle North America a preferred clock source to the industry. Hermle Black Forest Clocks was rebranded as Hermle North America in January 2011 to signify the next step into the future.  Hermle North America will become a one-stop shop for all genuine Hermle products, including carrying the largest Hermle and Urgos movement selection available to the trade in the world.  Our clock movements, clock accessories, clock parts and clocks are distributed throughout North America to a vast dealer network. To find Hermle Clocks in North America, please contact 1-800-4CLOCKS.com (1-800-425-6257, ext. 1).

The Hermle Clock History

In 1922 Hermle Clocks founder Mr. Franz Hermle founded the Franz Hermle Clock Company located in Gosheim in Baden Wuerttemberg, a small town in southern Germany’s Black Forest region.

Within ten years Hermle Clocks became known as one of the most efficient manufacturers of clock movements in the clock industry.  Even though the first half of the 20th Century brought with it many difficulties to overcome, including the complete dismantling of the factory after the World War II, Franz Hermle and his sons” dedication allowed them to prosper while other companies struggled.

Franz Hermle passed away in 1953 and left a modern and prosperous operation to his sons Gebhard, Alfred, Hans and Heinrich Hermle.  With tremendous willpower and energy, they continued to build the company into the worldwide leader in manufacturing mechanical movements and clocks.

In 1977, Hermle decided to establish another manufacturing facility, Hermle Black Forest Clock Company to serve the North American market out of Amherst, Virginia, USA.  Hermle’s Headquarters in southern Germany is now in its third generation, still family owned and operated.  Hermle employs over 200 people in 3 locations in both Germany and USA.  In October 2010, Hermle Gosheim was
rebranded as Hermle Uhrenmanufacktur GmbH and as of January 2011, Hermle Black Forest Clocks rebranded itself as Hermle North America.

Franz Hermle Clocks in Gosheim in Baden Wuerttemberg Germany

How Much Are Grandfather Clocks

10.28.13

Grandfather clock shoppers and seasoned grandfather clocks and grandmother clocks shoppers alike may be confused by the dizzying array of choices presented to them by Retailer and on the Internet alike.  Prices for new grandfather clocks can range from $200 to over $20,000 dollars.  Clearly, not only is there a broad array of choices within varying price points, but the differences between those price points and within the different ranges of prices.  Clearly, the vast majority of shoppers are looking to get the greatest grandfather clock discount they can, sometimes putting greater emphasis on service and trust from dealing with a grandfather clock shop where the owners will clearly know what they are saying and can actually help if and when and issues come up after the consumer or business receives its grandfather clock.  Grandfather clocks on sale can and reasonably should be one important consideration when making am important clock purchase, but other intangibles, such as knowledgeable salespeople and people who can truly give good answers to pointed questions about grandfather clocks, not to mention having a genuine warranty that is also worthwhile, but also knowing there will be a continuing clocks resources if and as needed.

In more recent years, there has been the challenge of very low quality grandfather clocks and grandmother clocks that are of inferior quality, yet in many cases were designed to look specifically like models of higher-end grandfather clocks, sometimes even “borrowing” the names of other models made by the best grandfather clock companies out there.  Sadly, some of the sellers of these what can literally be termed as pieces of junk and sold by some of the biggest and best known names in big box retailing.  Over the last year alone, we have received hundreds on inquiries looking for help from people who have purchased these grandfather clocks, and not only can they not return the clocks to these major retailers in most all cases (because the box has been opened and the items unpacked), but there is also frequently no contact information or telephone number of the maker or importer that will yield anything useful to these clock purchasers who have essentially thrown their money away.  They do a Google Search of the model name, and because the names have frequently be the names of the high-end makers, they see our contact information in the search engine results.  There is little we can do to help them, except suggesting they insist the retailer take back the junk in these cases.

So who are the best retailers, and which are the grandfather clock makers one should consider, even when not knowing how much one wants to spend.  One piece of good news is that all the well-respected and good-excellent quality makers have price points to match any budget for someone who is serious about investing in a good quality grandfather clock that might one day be considered an heirloom by family members.  Aside from the importance of the sound and quality of the grandfather clock chimes, the features such as chime-silence option and automatic nighttime shut-off, the bells and whistles such as a rotating moon-phase dial or an illuminated cabinet or lit grandfather clock dial, one should also consider an heirloom grandfather clock as an important piece of furniture that can be loved and admired and cherished for many generations.

Generally speaking, if one knows little about grandfather clocks, looking to the most well known brands with the best reputations for overall grandfather clock quality and workmanship would be a good way to start.  These would include brands like Howard Miller Grandfather Clocks, Hermle Grandfather Clocks, the Ridgeway Grandfather Clock Collection, Kieninger Grandfather Clocks and some few others.  There are also good brand names out there that no longer make grandfather clocks, but one may come across them, including 1-800-4CLOCKS’ Museum Grandfather Clocks, Sligh Grandfather Clocks, Seth Thomas Grandfather Clocks and Bulova Grandfather Clocks.

The grandfather clock case will be one major component of the cost, based on the wood or sometimes metalwork involved and how much there is, its quality, and to what extent there are special elements like carvings or inlay.

The grandfather clock or grandmother clock movement is also critical, including whether it is cable-driven, chain-driven, tubular chime, spring-driven or quartz-driven.  This is a subject we have written about extensively in our clocks blogs, and we are also always available to discuss purchase options with serious grandfather clock shoppers, even if they are in their earlier stages of learning and shopping.  Which and how many grandfather clock chimes is another variable, and assuming they are on of the high-end mechanical movement makers, which nowadays includes mostly all Hermle Clocks and Kieninger Clocks grandfather clock movements.  The chime is another element, with most of the basic clocks having one or more of Westminster Chimes, Whittington Chime, St Michaels Chime, Ode to Joy grandfather clock chime, bim bam chime, and the Ave Maria grandfather clocks chime.

Special features like rotating moon face dials, automatic nighttime shutoff, chime-silence option, illuminated dials, lit cabinets, and time capsules can all add to the desirability and price tag of any individual grandfather clock.

Perhaps one of the biggest takeaways, especially when purchasing a grandfather clock, is not to assume because 2 different clocks may look alike and each have the Westminster Chime, NEVER ASSUME they are comparable quality clocks in any way, whether they are brand new or vintage or even antique grandfather clocks.  If not careful and armed with some grandfather clock knowledge and knowing where to get the answers to other  questions, one might end up with a very expensive piece of junk.

How Much are Grandfather Clocks?

How Much are Grandfather Clocks?

 

 

 

How Much is My Grandfather Clock Worth?

10.25.13

One of the most common inquiries we get at our stores selling grandfather clocks and other furniture and wall and mantel clocks, is what is the worth of my xyz grandfather clock.  Despite being one of the most common grandfather clock questions we get, it is a very difficult one to answer.  One of the defining factors is whether the clock is one of the many antique grandfather clocks out there, and if so, a grandfather clock by which maker, the condition, the look, the quality, whether everything is all original, and how and where one is planning to sell the grandfather clock.  Generally speaking, there should not be any major difference in the worth or appraisal of comparable grandmother clocks vs grandfather clocks.  They are both Floor Clocks.

For new grandfather clocks such as Howard Miller grandfather clocks, Hermle Grandfather Clocks, Kieninger Grandfather Clocks and the Ridgeway and Americana Grandfather Clock Collections, we generally always advise that a grandfather clock purchase, even of one these high-end grandfather clock and furniture brands, should generally not be thought of as a purchase for investment purposes, even if you are at the greatest grandfather clocks sale with a grandfather clock discount wherever you turn.  Yes, many if not most of these clocks can and should be reasonably thought of as heirloom quality grandfather clocks that should live through many generations, and perhaps fought over as cherished heirlooms within families.  Many of the calls we get of from people either liquidating an estate with one or more grandfather clocks or from a family member who wants to try to establish the grandfather clock worth for a trade of sorts within a family.  Additionally, while on this point, grandfather clock estate planning is something we have seen quite frequently, with parents wanting to make certain that each of their children are give grandfather clocks that they each can and will cherish, and so their own grandfather clock bequest with be either predefined or a non-issue.

Establishing the value of a vintage grandfather clock, whether one of the Howard Miller Clocks or a Hermle Clock or Ridgeway Clock, can be near impossible to do with any high degree of  either confidence or accuracy.  Yes, when it was made, of what wood(s), what grandfather clock chimes it has, the condition of the grandfather clock movement, any special features such as auto-nighttime shutoff all do matter, but aside from not knowing what the condition of the grandfather clock is on the inside, whether everything is all original, the condition and style of the case, there is the reality that the grandfather clock will be worth what somebody is willing to pay for it, and there are hundreds of variables that can effect that.  People frequently have a difficult time understand that reality.  There is also the question of what the age of the clock does to the value of a grandfather clock, and that is also a question with many layers to any coherent answer.  A true antique grandfather clock, like an antique car, can be worth a lot more than it might otherwise, but what happens before then is especially uncharted territory by definition.

Whether you are selling your grandfather clock at a yard sale, or on Craigslist or on eBay, or at a store in general, or perhaps one of the finest antique stores, there can be many price points, and aside from the sale venue, how long one is willing to wait and advertise and publicize their grandfather clock sale, and what credibility they might have, also matter importantly.  Another critical factor is the coat of shipping, and associated with that the risk of damage, which can be very expensive, especially for an individual.  Even moving the grandfather clock, unless one knows what they are doing, is fraught with the risk of damaging the grandfather clock during the move.

The simplest answer therefore, if one is buying a grandfather clock, is simply what it is worth to you for your home decor value, and what risk or level of confidence do you have that there are no hidden issues with the grandfather clock.  If you pay no more than it is worth as a piece of high-end furniture to be appreciated by interior decorators and visitors alike, there is no way you can go wrong with that grandfather clock or floor clock purchase.  That is the best advice.

What is my grandfather clock worth?

How Much is My Grandfather Clock Worth?

 

 

Ohio Grandfather Clock

10.15.13

On the second floor of the Capitol Building stands a grandfather clock that had garnered a lot of attention in the news about the Countdown to a potential Government Financial default and counting up of the days since the Federal Government has shut down and “non-essential” workers remain at home.  During this Debt Ceiling Limit and Government Budget showdown, the so-called Ohio Grandfather Clock made by Thomas Voigt actually stopped running, and that was a euphemism to many that our Government was indeed broken. The Senate purchased the clock in 1815 from Thomas Voigt.  The rumor is that the clock was meant to celebrate Ohio joining the Country because the clock has 17 stars and Ohio was the 17th state to join.   However, there is no proof that the rumor is true and the clock was ordered 12 years later when there were 18 states in the Union. The big, wide Senate hall just outside the back of the Senate Chamber, on the second floor of the Capitol, attracts dozens of reporters every Tuesday around lunchtime.

Democrats meet privately in a room on the far right (as one walks away from the president’s room) while Republicans meet around the corner. Arrive around 12:30 p.m. to get senators as they go in, then leave around 1:15 p.m. Come back at 1:45 and get ‘em as they go out.

The more in-demand senators will go to special microphones to the right of the clock around 2:15. Be sure to bring a tape recorder.

The Ohio Clock, standing in what is now known in the Capitol as the Ohio Clock Corridor, is an imposing grandfather’s clock opposite the main doors of the chamber, is often cited as a place to meet sources — easy to find, easy to remember.

Thomas Voigt 1815 Grandfather Clock on Second Floor of US Capitol outside Senate Chambers in Ohio Corridor

The government shutdown was ironic from the moment it began — It all happened over the health care law, which started registration the moment the government shut down at midnight on Oct. 1.

Over the days since, the United States has witnessed a variety of strange consequences. Here is s a look at the weirdest effects of the shutdown, from a panda cam going dark to the hands on a historic Senate clock frozen in place to bored Congressional workers.

Clock hands ‘frozen’ in place
Credit: U.S. Senate

The hands of the Senate’s historic Ohio Clock are frozen at 12:14, according to NBC News. The curators tasked to wind the 11-foot-tall (3.4 meters) clock have been furloughed, last winding the clock on Sept. 30.

Despite its name and the shield with 17 stars on the front of it, the clock is not meant to celebrate the 17th state Ohio’s statehood, according to the U.S. Senate. In 1815, Sen. David Daggett of Connecticut ordered the clock from clockmaker Thomas Voigt. Though Sen. Daggett gave fairly detailed instructions about the clock’s appearance, he didn’t mention anything about it commemorating Ohio or how many stars should be placed on the shield.

“The dial to be about two feet in diameter, an hour, minute and second hand, a Spread Eagle on the top and the United States arms at foot. We wish it good and handsome and expect to pay accordingly,” read the order for the clock, according to the U.S. Senate website.

Complete Resource of Information on Grandfather Clocks

10.09.13

When shopping for grandfather clocks online, or looking for the best grandfather clock discount, knowledge of the market is critical to any savvy buyer.  Unless one happens to be an expert at their local Grandfather Clock Store or Furniture Retail Store which may have grandfather clocks on sale, the array of choices can become very hard to create a climate where a floor clock buyer feels he or she is in control.  This is compounded by the fact that more and more grandfather clock stores have gone out of business, and those that remain have significantly curtailed the number of grandfather clocks they may have on display on their showroom floor.  This is true because the economics of selling clocks of all kinds, whether floor clocks or mantel clocks or wall clocks or cuckoo clocks, have changed dramatically over the last decades.

Whether you are looking for a Howard Miller Grandfather Clock, a Kieninger Floor Clock, one of the Ridgeway Grandfather Clocks or a Hermle Grandfather Clock, a sophisticated shopper is likely to run into the same grandfather clock shopping questions and issues regardless of where in the USA, Canada, or other parts of the world the consumer or individual may be located.  It is relatively easy to see many grandfather clocks online, but trying to see the one you are most interested in by a particular maker, whether it be one of the Howard Miller Clocks or Hermle Clocks or Ridgeway or Kieninger Clocks, finding the clock to view in person can be a challenge.

In response to that, clock retailers like 1-800-4CLOCKS, in addition to the obvious toll-free service and advice they provide, have also created resources for shoppers to at least begin to understand the different both between and within grandfather clock brands, as well as the type of movements and musical chimes available, the wood used, which is solid hardwood for most all cases, and what the pros and cons are between different clocks, styles, movements, manufacturers, price points, features and much more.

The Grandfather Clocks Blog was launched, in fact, to be a thorough and highly searchable resource for someone who wants to learn not only about new grandfather clocks, but also antique grandfather clocks and Vintage grandfather clocks.

Here are but a few of the titles of blog posts we have used to be the best single source of information for grandfather clock buyers:

Moving Grandfather Clocks

Antique Grandfather Clock Prices

Howard Miller Grandfather Clocks Setup Video

El Howard Miller Video de Como Construir su Reloj de Caja

Granfather Clocks

Types Grandfather Clocks Tops Swans Neck Bonnet Flat or Round Styles

Clocks Index

Grandfather Clocks Information

Grandfather Clock History Revisited

Discounts Grandfather Clocks

Tick Tock Tick Tock

Grandfather Clock Diagram

Grandfather Clock Buying Guide

Tempus Fugit Grandfather Clocks Means Time Flies

Hermle Grandfather Clocks on sale

Grandfather Clocks Discount

Presidential Grandfather Clocks by Howard Miller

Clock Collecting Across Generations

Black Forest Grandfather Clocks

Grandfather Clock Showroom

Chiming Grandfather Clocks

Discount Grandfather Clocks

Grandfather Clocks Made in America

Grandfather Clocks Running Fast Slow Over Time

Grandfather Clocks Private White House Office

Big Ben Clock Turns 150 Today and is As Good as Old

Grandfather Clocks Running Fast Slow How Fix

Discount Grandfather Clock

Grandfather Clocks Make Beautiful Heirlooms

Grandfather Clocks Tallcase Clock Long Case Clock

Grandfather Clocks Wedding Anniversary Presents

Grandfather Clocks eBay

Unusual Grandfather Clocks

Grandfather Clocks Antique or Not

Grandfather Clocks for Sale-Discounts

Grandfather Clocks Howard Miller vs Ridgeway

We also hope you will out 1-800-4CLOCKS.com website, as well as ClocksBlog.com to see even many more resources to help make your clock shopping experience most valuable.  And remember, we at 1-800-4CLOCKS never use a call center and always have knowledgeable grandfather clock people who will be available to answer any questions you may have.

Grandfather Clock Complete Resource Guide

Grandfather Clock Complete Resource Guide

Grandfather Clocks History Past-Present

10.07.13

Some grandfather clock history and clocks history never gets old.  Just look at the stories of Simon Willard, Aaron Willard and Benjamin Willard.  An article written in 1936 is still as informative and interesting to a clocks historian as one written today.  Grandfather Clocks enthusiasts are sure to minimally find this interesting.

Richmond Times-Dispatch
May 24, 1936

Grandfather Clocks, Some Genuine Old-Timers Still Tick Off Hours or Chime Timely Melodies, Proof of Care Their Makers Used

Many things had been discussed by the little group seated behind the plate glass window of a Franklin Street store. And that isn’t exactly true either. Many things had been broached, but the discussion was almost wholly a monologue by the host, a veteran of many a trek into the hinterlands of the antique country and a recognized authority on early American antiques. Now and then a listening member would throw a few words into the conversation, more to keep the oratory flowing than for any factual use, until at last someone uttered those well-worn last words: “What time is it getting to be?”

Subconsciously glances were directed toward the tall dominating grandfather clock against the far wall. Then they fell back to modern wrist-watches and there was a concerted start–for watch and clock pointed to the same hour. No one mentioned it, but there was a subtle sort of mental agreement that it was all “just a coincidence.” But it wasn’t. That old grandfather’s clock was still keeping time, and correct time. “How come?” I lingered to question the antique dealer. And thereby came this tale, a story of famous old American clocks and clockmakers.  It seems that– when Simon Willard was 13 years old he made his first “grandfather” clock. When he was 82 he made the large clock in the Capitol at Washington. He was born in 1753, lived to be 95 years old, and left behind him some of the best and most beautiful clocks that have ever been made.

Simon Willard had no grand ideas about organization, sales promotion and production. He did all his work in the space of four rooms. It is good to think that Simon’s clocks, which were made by hand and with infinite care and solicitude, command a higher price today than those made by Aaron Willard, his brother, who opened up a factory and turned out watches and clocks by the hundreds.

Side by side in a Richmond, Virginia antique shop may be seen a grandfather clock made by Simon Willard and one by Aaron Willard. To the connoisseur with blood in his eye the clock made by Simon is much the finer. To the casual onlooker both the clocks are rare examples of early American grandfather (or long case) clocks.

A Simon Willard “Grandfather” clock (left), which is still in first-class condition. The case is very handsome with its curved fretwork on top. Phases of the moon and the days of the month are both given. Simon Willard made his first Grandfather clock at the age of 13.
A Simon Willard shelf clock (right). The Willards’ called these clocks, which were made as early as 1784, timepieces, because they did not strike. The works are made of brass.

 

Benjamin Willard, who started making clocks in 1764, was the father of Aaron and Simon, and the first of this famous Massachusetts family to engage in clock-making. In the Boston Gazette for February 22, 1771, he advertised, “Musical clocks playing different tunes, a new tune every day in the week, and on Sunday a Psalm tune. These tunes perform every hour.”

Reliable Clocks Kept Puritan Sabbath

And such is the reliability of a Willard clock that there is no single record of a Puritan Sabbath being violated by week-day tunes. Likewise, the beauty and workmanship which went into the clock cases of Simon Willard is not the only reason these clocks bring good prices wherever antiques are sold: The clocks run and they keep good time.

Simon Willard was an inventor of genius, but that did not keep him from being a thrifty American. He thought that clocks ought to be good and that they ought to be cheap enough for an American to own one, and at the same time have money enough left for a house to put it in. He advertised little, relying on his clock papers (and his clocks) to put across his ideas. One of these clock papers tells his story:

A Simon Willard ‘Grandfather’ clock (left), which is still in first-class condition. The case very handsome with its curved fretwork on top. Phases of moon and days month are both given. Simon Willard made his first at age 13. A shelf (right). Willard called these clocks, were as early 1784, timepieces, because they did not strike. The works were brass.

“Simon Willard, at his Clock Dial in Roxbury Street, manufactures every kind of clock work, such as large clocks for steeples, made in the best manner. . . . Clocks that will run one year without winding up, with very elegant cases, price 100 dollars. . . . Elegant daytime pieces, price 30 dollars. Timepieces which run 30 hours and warranted, price 10 dollars. . . . Chime clocks that will play six tunes, price 120 dollars. . . . Gentlemen who wish to purchase any kind of clocks are invited to call at said Willard’s Clock Manufacture, where they will receive satisfactory evidence that it is much cheaper to purchase new than old and second-hand clocks. He warrants all his work–and as he is ambitious to give satisfaction–he doubts not of receiving public approbation and patronage.”

Willard Originated the “Banjo” Clock

Although Simon Willard knew the worth of his clocks, it is doubtful if he dreamed of the approbation and patronage they would receive less than a hundred years after his death. He set out to make serviceable clocks that thrifty Americans could buy with a clear conscience. What would he say if he could happen in today on some sale of rare antique clocks and see his paragons of thrift and mechanical perfection sold for prices for four figures? And the purchasers, descendants, perhaps, of those thrifty New England customers of his, glad to get them at that price and paying for them with a smile?

Aaron Willard turned out his clocks by the hundred. The clock at right is mahogany with inlay. The other clock is by Nathaniel Edwards of Acton, Mass.

In 1802 Willard brought out his patent timepiece, which was later called the banjo clock. It was a prodigious success. No improvement has since been made on the original design. The story goes that such accuracy did Willard have in his hand and eye that he habitually filed the teeth of his cogwheels without marking them; and that when someone asked him why he didn’t stamp his brass with markers, he replied that it was unnecessary–his wheels were accurate. And Simon Willard was right! One proud owner of a Willard order clock says that it has run within 30 seconds of accuracy for a month.

Simon Willard died during the turbulent year of 1848. He had retired from business in 1839 and sold his tools and the good will of the business (together with the privilege of putting the name Simon Willard on the dials) to Elnathan Taber, his best apprentice. Simon Willard Jr. took these clocks and sold them at his shop in Boston.

It was this son, Simon Jr., who made the astronomical clock now in the observatory of Harvard University. His astronomical regulator was standard time for all railroads in New England.

Since the first grandfather clock appeared in England in 1681, clockmakers in this country and abroad have given them thought and consideration, so that now, when the antique hunter goes clock hunting, there is every style, every wood and every price at his disposal for this useful and beautiful ornament.

Clocks Index

06.04.13

Consumers of all industrial and personal use items have heard of and to some degree follow the Consumer Confidence Index.  People on Wall Street and Economists all look at the Index of Leading Economic Indicators.  Manufacturers and economists alike look at the Consumer Price Index, or CPI, as among other things as a  bellwether for signs of potential inflation on the horizon.  Well here and now we would like to introduce the Clock Index.

Clocks by their nature are organizational creatures, whether they are the heartbeat of the home as a grandfather clock that all can hear and tell the time of day.  Wall clocks throughout the nation, and the World, tell people in homes what time of the day it is, and in offices can be even more integral to the workings of an organization with everything from the start of day, to meetings, to lunchtime, to coffee breaks, to quitting time can all be measured and watched by looking at a wall clock near you.  We have had many customers purchase atomic wall clocks for precisely the reason that they do not want employees discussing or arguing about whether it really is 5 o’clock or whatever the quitting time is, or not.  They see atomic clocks as productivity enhancers.

So should our Clock Index be more than the types of clocks we offer, such as grandfather clocks, mantle clocks, wall clocks, atomic clocks and much more, and should they are highlight the makers, such as Howard Miller Grandfather Clocks, Hermle Floor Clocks, the Ridgeway Grandfather Clock Collection, Kieninger Wall Clocks, Hermle Grandfather and Mantel Clocks, Americana Grandfather Clocks, or should the Clock Index take a completely different wither micro or macro view of the work of clocks.  Should it perhaps include the history if clocks, including the history of grandfather clocks, grandmother clocks, wall clocks and more, or should it highlight the current clock makers like Howard Miller Clocks, Kieninger Clocks, Hermle Clocks, Ridgeway Clocks and more, or should it include some well-known but no longer extant manufacturers of clocks such as Sligh Grandfather Clocks, Bulova Grandfather Clocks, Seth Thomas Clocks including the famous Seth Thomas Grandfather Clocks, Seth Thomas Wall Clocks and Seth Thomas Mantel and Nautical Clocks, among many others.

If one goes father back in clock history, simply 25 years and earlier, there an be thousand of clock makers and tens of thousand of clock and watchmakers around the globe going all the way back to the late 1600s to the present.  The horological history is rich and well documented in many places, and the Clock Index could be the focal point for bringing much of it together.

There are also membership associations such as the National Association of Watch and Clock Collectors (NAWCC) and the American Watch and Clock Institute (AWCI) which are by themselves repositories of vast amounts not only of timepiece expertise and teaching, but also of clock and watch history from the golden days to the present.

Any thoughts individuals may have about the clock history, the current clock and timepiece market more broadly, and how a clock index might fit into all of that and be of most use to grandfather clock, wall clock and mantle clock shoppers, as well as to those studying clock history, would be most welcome to give us their time and thoughtful input.

Grandfather Clock Index

 

Links We Love: What we’re reading this week

05.31.13

What we’re reading this week: AD’s favorite stories from around the web
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