Atkins Octagon School House clock

Discussion in 'Your Newest Clock Acquisition' started by Bruce Barnes, May 19, 2017.

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  1. Bruce Barnes

    Bruce Barnes Registered User
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    Mar 20, 2004
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    Hi, I won this clock and I am hoping there is some identifying information available. It has everything original except the key, rosewood case, [​IMG]painted dial and what appears to be an old if not original signature that I cant clarify.
    Any help will be appreciated.......
    Regards,
    Bruce
     
  2. Andy Dervan

    Andy Dervan Registered User
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    Hello,

    Movement photograph would be helpful for better identification.

    Andy Dervan
     
  3. Bruce Barnes

    Bruce Barnes Registered User
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    Hi Andy will do when it gets here also really like the heart shaped hands I haven't seen them too often,
    Bruce
     
  4. Andy Dervan

    Andy Dervan Registered User
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    Hello Bruce,

    Phil Gregory co-authored a great book on Atkins that is worthwhile acquisition for a Atkins collector.

    Andy Dervan
     
  5. Bruce Barnes

    Bruce Barnes Registered User
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    I perused the NAWCC research and I would guess that this clock model is the octagon drop model 260 t & s ca. 1865-1875 +- still curious about the uncommon heart shaped hands as the seller said they are original.
    Regards,
    Bruce
     
  6. Andy Dervan

    Andy Dervan Registered User
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    Hello Bruce,

    Gregory & King book illustrates this case style 260 ca 1865 on page 72. However, the hands on clocks are different - none of period Atkins period clocks had heart shaped hands (typically were moon or spade), or so I question their originality in your clock. They look nice, but it is better having clock characteristics verified by catalogs or well documented examples.

    Andy Dervan
     
  7. Bruce Barnes

    Bruce Barnes Registered User
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    Thanks Andy, I don't have the app that would allow me to clarify the signature on the dial ( looks like Atkins clock co Bristol,CT ) so I have asked the seller if he could read it for me. I agree on the hands, I just wondered if originally they might have been an option versus the other styles used.
    Bruce
     
  8. bruce linde

    bruce linde Technical Admin
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    and the seller knows this how? :cool:

    i perused a whole bunch of atkins clocks via google image search and couldn't find another one with those hands... nice as they are.
     
  9. Bruce Barnes

    Bruce Barnes Registered User
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    I did the same search and arrived at the same conclusion........maybe because of age and condition and also period. 50 miles out of town and you become an expert !! :))

    Thanks for looking,
    Bruce
     
  10. Andy Dervan

    Andy Dervan Registered User
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    Hi Bruce,

    When you receive the clock, I would send photographs to Phil Gregory and ask him about it. He might have received more comments and photographs since their book was published.

    Andy Dervan
     
  11. bruce linde

    bruce linde Technical Admin
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    are you kidding? total fun! :cool:

    great clock.
     
  12. George Nelson

    George Nelson Registered User
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    Hi, Bruce and All,

    I looked through a re-pro Atkins Clock Company 1873 catalog, and found your clock to be what they called "Drop Octagon Spring", describing it as a 25" height and a 12" dial, Eight Day Time and Eight Day Strike. The hands illustrated are the typical moon style. In time only, it retailed for $6.25 in 1873 (worth about $125 in today's money), and the striking model sold for $7.25 ($145.00 today) that same year.

    I could not find a matching pair of hands to yours in the catalog, but they sure are beautiful!

    Interestingly, Waterbury offered a nearly identical clock to yours in the same year, an example of which I have in my collection (picture below). It too sold for $6.25.

    Warmest regards always,

    George
     
  13. RAK

    RAK Registered User
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    Hi Bruce,

    Really enjoyed seeing your clock. Since it is old as the hills, you could check to see if the hands show "age", and if so, you could consider them original, or replacements made during the clock's working life and keep 'em. They really are unique and sharp looking. And if you are like most of us, you already have a room full of clocks with spade or Maltese hands.

    As an addition to what other folks have offered, I posted a few pictures of this clock in the thread "Share Your Advertising Clock" (posts 157 and 162), where this clock advertised "CREAM MUSTARD". Owen.Or also shared a photo of one in the initial posting. This seems to have been a very popular case style used by more than a few companies. In the advertising clocks, Ansonia Brass and New Haven movements have been seen. I also included a few pictures of three different hand styles seen on the advertising version, none of which were spade or Maltese. These were very early advertising clocks.

    Thanks for sharing!

    Bob
     
  14. Bruce Barnes

    Bruce Barnes Registered User
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    Thanks Bob,
    The hands were one of the appealing factors along with the fact that it is an Atkins..............I noticed other Atkins clocks and it seems as though he didn't sign many of his dials, this one as close as I can decipher the blur says Atkins Clock Co., Bristol CT. I looked up the name and there is a conflict with this clock and the dates of the company, 1855-58.

    Your thoughts on the spade and Maltese hands is correct.
    Thanks for your comments,
    Bruce
     
  15. Steven Thornberry

    Steven Thornberry User Administrator
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    Is the lettering on the dial, Atkins Clock Co. or Atkins Clock Manufacturing Co.? The latter was in business from 1855 to 1857/58. The Atkins Clock Co. was in business from 1859 to 1879.
     
  16. Bruce Barnes

    Bruce Barnes Registered User
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    Hi Steven ,
    Since I don't have the clock yet and the writing is blurred in the photo, I presume that it is Atkins clock co which would dovetail with the clock style/model and the company dates. Are there any things re: the works that i.d. it as an Atkins and any significant label nuances?
    Regards,
    Bruce
     
  17. Steven Thornberry

    Steven Thornberry User Administrator
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    Other than the company name, I can't think of any label nuances to be on the lookout for. So far as movement, Atkins used several different ones. As eight-day time and strike in a short drop Octagon Drop, maybe, perhaps, might be, possibly, it is something like the one below. But come back when you have it and post the pictures for a complete record, so we can be much more surely surer than sure.

    [​IMG]
     
  18. Bruce Barnes

    Bruce Barnes Registered User
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    Clock will soon be shipped and when I enlarged the photo,blurry as it is, it looks like the word Forestville rather than Bristol and on the surround four of the eight edges appear to have some type of edge work in a tight but small pattern was this common on all of the 260 models?
    Cant wait for it to arrive.
    Regards,
    Bruce
     
  19. Steven Thornberry

    Steven Thornberry User Administrator
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    Forestville is actually a section of Bristol. The "Irenus Atkins" labels I personally am familiar with show his location as Bristol. It will be interesting to see the dial, movement, and any label when you receive the clock.
     
  20. Bruce Barnes

    Bruce Barnes Registered User
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    [​IMG][​IMG]Well the clock arrived via UPS and they shook the living H..L out if it the works are loose and judging by the parts floating around in the case the top taper pin in the strike side fell and dumped the butterfly and two wheels............................there are 4 other screws (steel) that are small enough to secure the works to mounting blocks.
    The curious thing is the case,glass and tablet came through unscathed.
    The dial signature is of a W.E. Taber &Son who were silversmith's in Providence R.I. not sure if he retailed clocks or this was a personal clock and last but not least this is the first time I have seena wooden bezel with matching rosewood veneer.lots of work.
    Bruve
     
  21. bruce linde

    bruce linde Technical Admin
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    sounds more like the seller didn't make sure things were secure before normal shipping and shakeage

    glad the important stuff survived the journey, keep us posted
     
  22. Rob Martinez

    Rob Martinez Registered User
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    Different Atkins piece but similar questions (dating clock, etc) In the thread so far someone wrote, "The Atkins Clock Co. was in business from 1859 to 1879." I've seen in other threads that they mention a book (name and authors escape me) where they say Mr. Atkins moved from Bristol to Forestville. My label says Atkins Clock Company (see attached) and Bristol. Does anyone know the date Atkins moved from Bristol to Forestville? [​IMG][​IMG]
     
  23. Steven Thornberry

    Steven Thornberry User Administrator
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    AS mentioned above, Forestville is a section of Bristol. I personally have not seen an Irenus Atkins clock label mentioning any place other than Bristol. However, two of Irenus Atkins nephews, Alden and Merritt, were in clock businesses in the Forestville section. So, perhaps there is some confusion arising from that.
     
  24. Bruce Barnes

    Bruce Barnes Registered User
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    Well the clock arrived and I finally got into the works and the works were completely loose and wandering around in the case, but luckily no visible damage.
    The works are totally original not one bushing whatsoever and the posts/plates are secured by twisted wire not brass pins. the plates are not marked but look identical to the photo that Stephen posted except the verge is on the left hand side and a little higher than the one on the photo,the bridge etc. are the same. Is this an older or newer version of this model works as found in the Model 260 ?
    The bezel is matching rosewood and looks the same as the one found on the Atkins 30 day wagon spring gallery clock,was this an option or perhaps a replacement?
    The hands are very old with visible pitting in the surface and a couple of layers of black paint and visible with the loop. If you look at the 30 day model the hands have some similarity, were custom hands available at the factory?
    This unit needs to be cleaned but right now it is keeping accurate time, however I am having some difficulty with the strike train, these were the loose parts floating around in the case.
    The name on the dial shows Taber and maybe he was a retailer or had this clock custom done for him as the end grain matching and the quality of the rosewood is beautiful.
    I will get some photos but at the moment my camera is on the "fritz".
    It is an exceptional clock to say the least !!
    Regards,
    Bruce
     
  25. Bruce Barnes

    Bruce Barnes Registered User
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    Hi, maybe I asked too many questions to get any responses, I have looked for the Atkins book and they wanted $185.00 for it and one would have to hock their soul to " Dan Scratch " to buy it.
    Bruce
     
  26. Steven Thornberry

    Steven Thornberry User Administrator
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    Bruce, many of your questions beg pictures so we can see what you are talking about. Saves us from guessing. For example, you say "the plates . . . look identical to the photo that posted except the verge is on the left hand side . . . ." In the photo I posted, I would reckon the verge to be to the left (of the hand shaft) because of the orientation of the verge cock and pin. I have seen similar Atkins movements with the verge to the right. But, I am unaware that one configuration is earlier or later than the other, though that is possible. So, the pictures would be useful.
     
  27. Bruce Barnes

    Bruce Barnes Registered User
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    Hi Steven, thanks for your reply, I have a friend with a camera showing up later today.
    The verge is on the right for sure plates a wee bit different but as I said previously no means of " id'ing " the movement as to maker.
    Did the 260 have brass grommets on the dial or not?
    Thanks,
    Bruce
     
  28. Bruce Barnes

    Bruce Barnes Registered User
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    [​IMG][​IMG]Here are the photos of the works...................let me know if you need any other views
     
  29. Bruce Barnes

    Bruce Barnes Registered User
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    Just as a sidebar, while cleaning the backboard I ran across in beautiful cursive script, the date of May/16/ '76.
    Bruce
     
  30. gleber

    gleber Registered User

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    I wish people would write the century instead of '76. I guess many people didn't expect these clocks to last long?

    Tom
     
  31. Steven Thornberry

    Steven Thornberry User Administrator
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    The picture is not clear enough to determine whether there were grommets or not. They often go missing, in any event, but they could well have been there.

    Your movement is shown in Gregory and King's book on page 75, fig. 265c. It came from a drop octagon (not like yours, but a more common variety) pictured in fig. 267 and said to date ca. 1875.
     
  32. Bruce Barnes

    Bruce Barnes Registered User
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    #32 Bruce Barnes, Jul 15, 2017
    Last edited: Jul 15, 2017
    Thanks for your help Steven, does the book show the 260 dial with grommets or any of the other drop octagons and would it be incorrect to add them as the dial arbor holes are dirty and chipped?
    Would this movement be deemed incorrect for this clock/case?
    Bruce
     
  33. Steven Thornberry

    Steven Thornberry User Administrator
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    When I mentioned that the picture was not clear enough, I was actually referring to Gregory & King's picture in fig. 260. I am unable to tell with certainty from any of the pictures in their book whether or not the clocks shown had grommets. However, look at George Nelson's clock in post #12. That one definitely has a grommet. It probably would not be incorrect to add grommets if you wish.

    If the mounting holes in the backboard align with the mounting feet, I would see no reason to doubt the movement' originality. Bear in mind that the feet are adjustable; so additional holes might simply be an indication that the original positions of the feet were moved because the original screw holes had become too large. Also, if the winding arbors align with the winding holes, that would be another point in favor of originality.
     
  34. Bruce Barnes

    Bruce Barnes Registered User
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    Excellent......the feet line up as do the arbors and NO extra holes in the backboard...original dial but the brass grommets would cover some little " owiees " and dress it up a little.
    Regards,
    Bruce
     
  35. George Nelson

    George Nelson Registered User
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    Stephen Thornberry wrote: "However, look at George Nelson's clock in post #12. That one definitely has a grommet. It probably would not be incorrect to add grommets if you wish."

    Stephen is certainly correct- my clock does have an original grommet installed in the winding hole, as do most of the dials on similar clocks I've seen. If you decide to use them, be sure to age them properly! Bright brass will look very inappropriate!

    Best to all,

    George
     
  36. Bruce Barnes

    Bruce Barnes Registered User
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    I have continued to scrutinize these works, and as stated previously there has never been a bushing or staking of the pivots, but as I review the lantern pinions the trundles show more than minimal wear and I ponder as to whether the effort would be worthwhile........... I have repositioned the strike side parts back in place as they were loose and scattered in the case, I factory straightened the lift wires etc. but I am having a problem lining up the cam and there seems to be an impediment that is stopping the strike.
    Back to the first part, is there a suitable replacement for the existing works? and if so what would be the recommendation?

    Great clock but some questions as usual.

    Regards,
    Bruce
     
  37. Steven Thornberry

    Steven Thornberry User Administrator
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    Bruce, I'm not questioning your skills, but why not have another clock repairman give the movement the once-over. I would not replace the movement, esp. with a "suitable replacement," if the current one is original.
     
  38. Bruce Barnes

    Bruce Barnes Registered User
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    Thanks Steven, I would keep the original movement and work on it at my leisure.............you can see the wear pattern on some of the trunions. The time side runs very well and keeps good time, I just thought after 120 + years and never having had any major service these challenges were going to arrive sooner or later. I can do this but it has been a few years since I really got into the "guts" of a mechanism.
    I am in complete concurrence with your comments and advice.
    Thanks again,
    Bruce
     
  39. Jim DuBois

    Jim DuBois Registered User
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    Here is an Adkins with grommets I recently picked up.
     
  40. Bruce Barnes

    Bruce Barnes Registered User
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    Great Clock Jim !!, when did you pick it up and does it run? Your dial is obviously original The dirt is like the same that took approximately 6+ hours to remove that was on mine.
    Regards,
    Bruce
     
  41. Bruce Barnes

    Bruce Barnes Registered User
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    Looking again Jim is that bezel wood and either rosewood or mahogany?......................
     
  42. Jim DuBois

    Jim DuBois Registered User
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    Too bad I can't spell worth a hoot..ADKINS? Really now? Atkins! ....oh well, yes I bought it in Arlington before the National started from a long time friend and collector surpreme from underneath a table in the Ives display Tue AM. And yes, it is rosewood case and trim.....and yes it runs fine but is running a bit slow at the moment.....30 day wagon spring time only....The friend replaced it in his collection with this one, also 30 day WS but with Ives on the dial, which is unusual to say the least...
     
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