French Carriage Clock maker's mark - any ideas please?

Christopher Lloyd Owen

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Aug 27, 2020
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I have just bought this carriage clock for stock, and it has what I presume is a maker's mark in the base. It is not one I have seen before nor can easily identify from the usual sources. It could of course be the case maker's mark ....

I have not yet taken the clock to pieces, so all I can see apart from the back plate and the base is the L'Epee mark underneath the platform. The column capitals are gilded in copper, and the rest is lacquered brass. It also is unusual in having a fully gilt dial. Height without handle 5 1/8 inches.

The mark suggests "A D", which makes me think A. Dumas. The clock itself would fit with that but I'd love confirmation one way or the other if anybody has any idea please?

121-front.jpg 121-back.jpg 121-mark.jpg
 

Ticktocktime100

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Hi,

The trouble with carriage clocks is that in the presence of a mark or stamp, it is sometimes difficult to know wether it relates to the manufacturer or the retailer. I don't know if it is by A. Dumas or not, but the examples I've seen signed by him are stamped "A. Dumas", not "AD". I wonder if it might be "AD" for the prominent French maker AD Mougin? Although I'm not sure, it's certainly plausible. Others may know more.

Regards.
 

John Arrowood

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Manfred Trauring (a member of NAWCC) was selling new L'Epee carriage clocks at Regional Marts 40-50 years ago. I bought one from him which had strike and alarm if I'm remembering correctly. It was stolen in a burglary at my house in 1993, so I can't post a picture. Some of the other long-time members may remember him. L'Epee is apparently still in business and is a Swiss company. They have a web page on the internet with pictures of various models of their clocks. It's easy to find if you use Google to look for them.
 
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Christopher Lloyd Owen

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Yes, L'Epee is now part of Swiza SA, as is Matthew Norman. They made escapements by the thousand for other makers: slight red herring in the context of this clock, which could have made by all sorts of people. It's the mark in the base that interests me, because I've not seen it before.

AD as an English (speaking) retailer? Maybe. But it's very discreet ....
 

jmclaugh

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That will be a lovely clock when it is cleaned and serviced. The mark A.D. in a diamond is attributed to Dumas (A.) in A&B's book Carriage Clocks, no illustration is shown but they also say A.D. on it's own is another mark of his.
 

Christopher Lloyd Owen

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Thanks Jonathan ...

It won't need too much by way of servicing because that has been done in the last 20 years (I guess), the oil sinks are pretty clean etc., and it's working well. Cleaning is more of a problem because somebody assembled it all and then the case ... and then lacquered it so thickly they might have been putting gloss paint on a window frame. The top glass was glued in with lacquer: grrrr. Any hints on cleaning the gilded dial (which wasn't done) would be appreciated. (I was taught always to start with the mildest solvent, and work upwards: I invariably start with Mark One human spit ....)

As for the mark in the base, well that A & B comment about the Dumas diamond is tempting I agree, but I'm not convinced until I'm convinced, if you follow. I'm hoping somebody else has seen it before.
 

jmclaugh

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Other than the name and late 19th C I don't know of any other info elsewhere so A&B's book which isn't a huge amount seems to have the most, it does refer to another source that says "Dumas even makes under his own resources such items as cases and gongs."

You might try contacting Leigh Extence who periodically posts here, he is involved in the clock trade and having a keen interest in carriage clocks may know more.
 
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