Alex Willard Clocks

Discussion in 'Wood Movement Clocks' started by owen.or, Mar 17, 2009.

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  1. owen.or

    owen.or Registered User
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    I have the book, "Simon Willard and his Clocks" by John Ware Willard, so I know a few things about Alex (Alexander Tarbell) Willard (1774-1850) of Ashburnham and Ashby, Mass. His family appears to have been related to the more famous Grafton Willards because of the connection to Major Simon Willard, the founder of Concord, Mass. There are a couple of pictures of his tall clocks at the antique clocks price guide site. (one dated c.1825) I would like to locate more pictures of clocks by Alex. Pictures of a movement would be especially useful. Does anyone know of other pictures or descriptions of clocks by Alexander T. Willard? David "owen.or"
     
  2. Joe Hollen

    Joe Hollen Registered User
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    Owen:

    I don't know about any specific pics of "Alexander Willard" clocks, movements, etc... But, someone who I'm sure collaborated with him are Abraham and Calvin Edwards - Clock building brothers of Ashby Mass. So, if you can find pics of the Edwards' clocks, you'll be looking at a product of the area, and that product was "30 hour - wooden movement - weight driven tall clocks"...

    A couple of places to check for pics of Edwards clocks is: A Treasury of American Clocks by Brooks Palmer. He shows an actual 30 hour works with the gear train exposed via plexiglass plates. You might also want to check the "Old Sturbridge Village" website for more info and pics...

    Good luck...

    Joe
     
  3. Paul Regan

    Paul Regan Registered User
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    Owen, you might email the Delaneys through delaneyantiqueclocks.com to see if they might share some pics. Manny of the Ashby Willard clocks have passed through their shop. Their shop in Towsend, MA is the next town to Ashby, MA. I wouldn't be suprised if they had an example in their shop at this time. Paul
     
  4. owen.or

    owen.or Registered User
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    #4 owen.or, Mar 19, 2009
    Last edited: Mar 19, 2009
    Here are some pictures of the clock in which I have an interest. A reliable source has indicated that the dial and movement are likely original. (30 hr. wooden works) The case in my opinion is also original although the grained finish on the pine case has likely been redone, the three finials on top are missing, and the feet may well have been shortened by about 2". Interesting piece regardless, David "owen.or"
     

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  5. Joe Hollen

    Joe Hollen Registered User
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    David:

    Nice clock ! I especially like the dial. Thanks for posting the pics !

    Joe
     
  6. owen.or

    owen.or Registered User
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    Joe, Thanks for the lead to the Brooks Palmer book. The pictures there provided one detail which might call into question whether the movement in the clock for which I have provided pictures is an Ashby, Mass. movement. Palmer provided a picture of what he called a Connecticut style 30 hr. tall case movement. In that movement the wooden back plate overlaps the seat board and attaches from the back. The movement in the A. Willard clock in which I have an interest does the same thing. The Edwards movement pictured in Palmer's book which is cited as an Ashby style movement and which at least in theory should look like the A. Willard movements does not appear to have this elongated back plate. Anyone know if Ashby movements sometimes had this elongated backplate? David "owen.or"
     

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  7. Paul Regan

    Paul Regan Registered User
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    I repaired many Ashby clocks back in the 70s so my memory is suspect, however the typical Ashby movement I remember had an enormous count wheel on the back plate driven by the main wheel. The plates were of maple as well as the gears. I have forgotten what the pinions were made of. Conn ones were of oak, cherry, and laurel pinions. Once you see an Ashby mvt, you have seen a unique design. A back plate pic of yours would give it away. Paul
     
  8. owen.or

    owen.or Registered User
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    Paul,
    I'm not certain I can get a shot from the back. I'll see what I can do. I appreciate the added information. Anyone have any thoughts on whether the pictured movement could be maple? David "owen.or"
     
  9. Andy Dervan

    Andy Dervan Registered User
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    Hello David,

    Alexander T. Willard made 30 hr. wooden movement tall clock movements - Ashby style.

    Check out Delaneyantiqueclocks.com website; they have an Alexander T. Willard clock in a grain painted case.

    Andy Dervan
     
  10. Peter A. Nunes

    Peter A. Nunes Moderator
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    #10 Peter A. Nunes, Mar 21, 2009
    Last edited: Mar 21, 2009
    Here is another example, from my collection. I think your example has lost its original movement, with a Connecticut 30 hour movement grafted to the original dial. I've included a couple of pictures of the case, which has some similarities to yours. With wood movement tall clocks, it is often difficult to tell for sure whether the movement and case started out life together... in this case (pun intended) I am almost certain that they have been together since the beginning. Even the movement mounting sticks are original.
     

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  11. owen.or

    owen.or Registered User
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    Andy and Peter, Thanks for the additional information. The pictures Peter supplied clearly show the big count wheel Paul described. I am going to have to visit the clock again to see if that count wheel is there; however, I am at this point inclined to agree with Peter that the dial and movement may not have begun life together. David "owen.or"
     

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