View Full Version : Identification please--Welch?

Jeremy Woodoff
02-24-2007, 08:29 PM
Here is a new acquisition, on its way to me. Can anyone identify the maker? I think it is E.N. Welch, but not sure. The name on the dial is "Luminous." It appears to have a visible balance escapement, with an unusual configuration. Any info will be appreciated.


02-25-2007, 12:56 AM
Hi Jeremy, I did not see in my Welch reference material or Ansonia. Ansonia did have a line of alarm clocks by the name Luminous, but they looked nothing like your little beauty. What is the cabinet material?

You may want to check the patents to see if you can ID who had the patent as shown on the dial. Interesting looking clock.

02-25-2007, 02:27 AM
I think luminous Might mean"Glow-in-the-dark".

Bob Reichel
02-25-2007, 10:34 AM
Try NAWCC Research with the Patent dates on the dial. I believe they have a comprehensive list of patents in the Library.
Your clock is very similiar to the "L'IMPERIAL" shown on page 251 of Tran Duy Ly's book, "Welch Clocks"

Jeremy Woodoff
02-25-2007, 09:11 PM
Thanks Lamar, Bob, and Chime. I found the first patent in Google Patents. It is for luminous paint. I suspect the dial of this clock has a luminous background. When the clock arrives I'll see if it still works, but I think luminous paint has a limited life. I couldn't find anything under the second date. If there are any patent numbers inside, I'll check. There is also something written at the bottom of the dial, but it is unreadable in the pictures.

If I come up with anything interesting, I'll post after the clock arrives, probably this week.


02-25-2007, 10:33 PM
Jeremy, I have seen some Ansonia movements with the patent date and year stamped on them. As far as I can remember the year was 1882, but I cannot recall the exact date. If some one can check their Ansonia movements, the patent date on them may match the one on yours.


Jeremy Woodoff
02-27-2007, 09:36 PM
The clock arrived today, and a very interesting clock it is. The lettering on the dial is "TERRY CLOCK CO., PITTSFIELD, MASS., SOLE MANUFACTURERS FOR LOVELL MFG. CO., L'T'D, ERIE, PA." The Terry Clock Co. was formed by Silas B. Terry, son of Eli Terry. S.B. Terry died in 1876, and his sons, Eli's grandsons, ran the company until it went bankrupt in 1880. Investors bought the company and moved it to Pittsfield, Mass in 1880, where it was run by the Terry brothers until 1888, when it again failed and became the Russell & Jones Clock Co.

"The American Clock" has an entry for The Lovell Mfg Co. in Erie, Pa. circa 1880. They made washers and wringers as well as clocks. Another listing, in the "Book of American Clocks," includes this entry: "Adv. 1893, 'The wonderful luminous dial clock that shines all night. Solid bronze front, covered back with an alarm, price $5.50. Also manufacture clothes wringers.'"

So my clock dates from between 1880 and 1888, in line with the patent dates on the dial of 1882 and 1883. Under all the grime, it appears the front of the clock is in fact bronze, so it may very well be the clock described in the advertisement, and was perhaps left-over stock, since the Terry Clock Co. ceased operations five years before the 1893 ad.

The front is an exact copy of Welch's "L'Imperial" from 1880, except for the very top, which on mine has an opening for a bell and a "good luck" horseshoe on top, whereas the Welch design has a more conventional top and is not an alarm. I'm not aware of a connection between Welch and Terry, so perhaps the design was just "borrowed."

The dial is paper and appears to be coated with a granular substance that must have been the luminous paint. The numerals are printed on top of the paint. It's very dirty and no longer glows.

The movement is a fairly standard lever with an alarm, but it has a wonderful visible balance that consists of three spokes with little turned buttons that make the motion very visible.

All-in-all, a very nice eBay purchase! Here are pictures:

02-27-2007, 09:50 PM
Thank You Jeremy for the follow thru. It was nice to hear the detail and see the pictures.

Looks like you slipped in and got a good one for your collection. Regards, Lamar

Bob Reichel
02-27-2007, 11:20 PM
Not in any of the research I've done on Welch did I ever come across any mention of foundry work. Metal casting that is. Welch bought Mueller cases and why not buying castings from the same outfit that Terry bought his? Maybe this will bring about another line of research.