Gilbert "1807" Banjo Clock

sylvester12

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Picked this banjo clock up today, Gilbert "1807" one day lever action movement. I think it dates to around the 1940 area. The tablet is a just picture in these clocks I have others. Cleaned up good, runs and makes a nice wall hanger. The price was right also.

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Steven Thornberry

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The 1807, FWIW, is not the clock's "name." In that year, Samuel Hoadley established a clock factory (Samuel Hoadley & Co.) on the site in Winsted, CT. The factory changed hands a few times until 1841, when Gilbert and Ezra Baldwin acquired it from Riley Whiting in 1841. Gilbert began putting the date on their clock in the 1920's (I think) to give the impression that their ancestry stretched back farther into the dawn of time than it actually did.

I did not find your banjo in Tran's book on Gilbert clocks (arlingtonbooks.com), but Tran shows no examples of these one-day backwind banjos. Does the label carry any other numbers on it? Are there any other numbers stenciled on or stamped into the wood? I would suspect the 1940's as being too late a period.
 
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sylvester12

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The 1807, FWIW, is not the clock's "name." In that year, Silas Hoadley established a clock factory (Silas Hoadley & Co.) on the site in Winsted, CT. The factory changed hands a few times until 1841, when Gilbert and Ezra Baldwin acquired it from Riley Whiting in 1841. Gilbert began putting the date on their clock in the 1920's (I think) to give the impression that their ancestry stretched back farther into the dawn of time than it actually did.

I did not find your banjo in Tran's book on Gilbert clocks (arlingtonbooks.com), but Tran shows no examples of these one-day backwind banjos. Does the label carry any other numbers on it? Are there any other numbers stenciled on or stamped into the wood? I would suspect the 1940's as being too late a period.
All the clock has on it is on the dial "Gilbert 1807" there's nothing stamped on the back. I looked at some other clocks after I posted this and one exactly like this one had it dated in the 1920's. Where they got this date from I don't know.
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I have another small Gilbert banjo and it's stamped 3707 on the back but it looks much newer than this clock. A lot of people on clock sites posting on the web call this an 1807 also and the dates are all over the place.

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You can see the difference in construction that the clock I got yesterday is older. When did Gilbert start using pictures instead of painted tablets? I've got another big 8 day Gilbert and it has 1807 on the dial also.

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Steven Thornberry

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I have another small Gilbert banjo and it's stamped 3707 on the back but it looks much newer than this clock.
The 3707 is possibly the designation of the clock, i.e., the model number. Gilbert often assigned numbers to their clocks, sometimes in conjunction with a name. Tran's Gilbert book shows a time-only 8-day lever clock from the 1929 catalogue identified as Gilbert's No. 3702. Perhaps yours is from about that same time period.

When did Gilbert start using pictures instead of painted tablets?
That I don't know; at a guess, the late 1920's. But I haven't really studied that aspect of Gilbert banjos.

FWIW, Tran's book also shows a Normandy chime banjo, the illustration of which has Gilbert 1807 on the dial. It's designation is No. 3083-B "Hoadley," a nod to Samuel Hoadley.

BTW, I corrected an error I made above. I should have written Samuel Hoadley & Co. in my post above, not Silas Hoadley.
 

sylvester12

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The 3707 is possibly the designation of the clock, i.e., the model number. Gilbert often assigned numbers to their clocks, sometimes in conjunction with a name. Tran's Gilbert book shows a time-only 8-day lever clock from the 1929 catalogue identified as Gilbert's No. 3702. Perhaps yours is from about that same time period.



That I don't know; at a guess, the late 1920's. But I haven't really studied that aspect of Gilbert banjos.

FWIW, Tran's book also shows a Normandy chime banjo, the illustration of which has Gilbert 1807 on the dial. It's designation is No. 3083-B "Hoadley," a nod to Samuel Hoadley.

BTW, I corrected an error I made above. I should have written Samuel Hoadley & Co. in my post above, not Silas Hoadley.
Thanks for the information Steven, I wonder why Gilbert put 1807 on a lot of the dials on his banjo's of different models, does it represent something specific?

Some people have posted this clock on some of the sites as an 8 day but the spring doesn't look like it. Maybe I should wind it up and see how long she ticks.

By the way in the third picture down it shows my Owen and Clark Chisel Front you were right it is missing the ears!!!
 

Steven Thornberry

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I wonder why Gilbert put 1807 on a lot of the dials on his banjo's of different models, does it represent something specific?
The best I can say, actually, is what I said in my posts above (#'s 3 & 5).
 

sylvester12

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Found out it had a cracked gear in the movement so I had to get the scrapper clock off him. Got lucky it's an 8 day movement the other was a 1 day, exact same case. I liked the ship picture better so I changed the picture also. I will fix the scrapper up have to find a gear and eagle topper.

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Kevin W.

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Sylvester i have one just like yours, with 1807 on the dial, its in rough shape, to be a good runner it will take a lot of work, balance wheel type escapement.
 

sylvester12

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I won't make a separate thread for the other banjo so here it is. It needs the eagle and the trim for the throat. I fixed the cracked gear in the movement so it's now a 1 day.

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sylvester12

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Sylvester i have one just like yours, with 1807 on the dial, its in rough shape, to be a good runner it will take a lot of work, balance wheel type escapement.
I got fairly lucky on this one it cleaned up good and the donor movement just needed to be oiled and it ticks like a Swiss watch. Yours doesn't have a label or stamped on the back wouldn't mind finding out what model this clock is. I just like banjos when I see one I take it home.
 
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