How to Differentiate Between 8-day Ives Tall Clocks

Discussion in 'Wood Movement Clocks' started by Tom Vaughn, Oct 2, 2019.

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  1. Tom Vaughn

    Tom Vaughn Registered User

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    Going through the wooden tall case clock book by Morris, and multiple Ives resources, I have found a lot of uncertainty on Ives 8-day roller pinion tall clock movements. There doesn't seem to be any consistency between movements. I've seen several clocks attributed to Amasa Ives Jr. & Company, and several others attributed to Joseph Ives himself, but there is no consistency between the movements pictured with these attributions. Obviously the clocks with paper labels are the correct attribution, but even among those positively labeled have differences.
    1) There seems to be a series of movements with two posts, and a series of movements with three posts. There does not seem to be a positive attribution that Joseph made two posts and Amasa made three, vice versa.
    2) On the strike side, the location of the fly is in a different location on majority of movements. Some have the fly between the two posts near the top of the plates, some have the fly closer to the corner of the plates, and some have the fly lower than the wheel turning it closer to the hammer.
    3) on some movements, the front plate has a section of wood cut out where the strike side hammer spring hits the plate.
    4) some clocks have the calendar mechanism, which tend to be attributed to Amasa (due to a calendar paper with Amasa's label on the calendar label itself), however, it also seems that most of these tall clocks have hour wheels with the calendar spikes intact, but no calendar mechanism ever produced on the final product.
    Is there anyone, or any way, to actually know which clocks are made by who? It seems that Joseph Ives's name is attributed onto clocks because he is more well known.
    Check Delaney's website (I'm not going to post their photos here), they have two Ives examples which I described, one with two posts and a cut out on the front plate for the hammer spring, and one with three posts and no cut away. Pictured below are two Ives clocks, one in my collection and one in the ACWM collection, both have three posts, but one has a cutout and the other doesnt. Another combination.
    The combinations I've noticed are:
    1) Three posts, the fan at the top of the plates between two of the posts, and a cutout on the front plate (this clock has no pegs on the hour wheel for a calendar mechanism (no calendar on dial obviously). (ACWM)
    2) Two posts, the fly closer to the side of the plates, a cutout on the front of the plate, hour wheel pegs with no calendar mechanism. (Delaney)
    3) Three posts, the fan at the top between two of the posts, no cutout on the front plate, pegs on the hour wheel, but cut off.
    4) Two posts, the fly closer to the corner of the plates, no cutout on the front plate.
    5) Three posts, fan at the top between the posts, no cutout on front plate, no pegs on hour wheel (Delaney)

    Obviously there is no consistency in any of these clocks, each one seems to have minor differences from the rest. I have yet to see two that are exactly the same. This must be where this confusion with attribution comes from. It seems that a study is needed to get the layout of as many Ives movements possible, and then go for attributions from there. I'll share pictures of two movements below but they will add no clearance to the subject as many, many more movements are needed to be pictured to get any answers through images.

    unnamed (1).jpg unnamed (2).jpg unnamed (3).jpg
     
  2. Tom Vaughn

    Tom Vaughn Registered User

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    Attached is a strike side view of the second clock pictured.

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  3. Jim DuBois

    Jim DuBois Registered User
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    Tom, you raise a number of interesting points in regards to the Ives 8-day roller pinion woodworks tall clocks. I have owned or had in for repair maybe 12-15 of these movements. I have two partial movements here at the moment.

    With the limited exposure I have had I don’t believe I could label any one of them as being by Amasa, Ira, or Joseph. While there have certainly been differences from movement to movement, I can’t determine early from later movements based on the clues I have seen.

    Not a single one of these movements/dials/clocks showed any maker name on the dial, movement, or on or in the case. Please note several of these I have had were loose movements, sometimes with dials, several times not. The two movements I have now are dial-less.

    Some points I have noticed;

    · One of the movements had 31 holes made for the calendar lift pins in the hour wheel but was never fit with pins

    · I have had movements/dials both with and without calendar dial apertures, and with and without the gear and hand portion of the calendar mechanism

    · I think every movement I have had here had three posts across the top of the movement. No two posted movements

    · One movement with a spring recess hand-carved for clearance. All the rest were without, as I recall

    · All the seatboards have small extra holes allowing compounded rewind cords

    · All have had “pinned” flys

    · I think all the movements had the 31 pins for calendar drive save the one with holes but no pins

    · I have only had one clock here that I am convinced had an original reverse painted glass dial. The others in my experience were at least partially repainted if not total repaints. And to that point how many of the glass plates were original, or replacements for broken dials?

    I fear none of my experience to date will assist you in your effort. I am of the opinion these movements were in production slightly after 1800. In 1803 Joseph Ives and his brothers engaged in real estate transactions. At that time we gather Ira was a working and apparently very skilled clockmaker suggested by his 1809 patent for clock striking.

    We are aware they were producing roller pinion movements before then and given the brothers involvements in other business endeavors it seems likely Joseph as well as Ira, and other brothers were also producing clocks, or parts for clocks then being sold under the family name.



    Details from Roberts;


    Titus Merriman for the consideration of One Hundred & Twenty Dollars received from

    Amasa Ives, Joseph Ives, Shaylor Ives, Merchants, Dealers & Traders together,

    known by the firm of Amasa Ives Jr. & Co. all of said Bristol.

    Signed March 12, 1808

    An eight-day wooden movement tall clock with roller pinions has recently been noted having a printed paper insert calendar dial with imprint "A.Ives, Jr. & Co."


    Given this was a production roller pinion movement we might also conclude it was not the first they had made. Its sophistication suggest several months or years of development and experience had happened to deliver this entirely different from any competition movement.

    20190325_155758.jpg 20190310_151102.jpg 20191002_174555.jpg 20191002_174522.jpg 20191002_174454.jpg 20191002_174341.jpg 20191002_174441.jpg 2017-01-18 14.32.41.jpg 20170114_145715.jpg IMG_1656.JPG IMG_1655.JPG 2016-09-24 11.08.50.jpg 2016-09-24 11.09.09.jpg H1101-L94832123.jpg
     
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  4. Jim DuBois

    Jim DuBois Registered User
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    #4 Jim DuBois, Oct 3, 2019
    Last edited: Oct 3, 2019
    Here are some details on dials which will most likely confuse us all even more. I reproduced one of the "Ives Dials" for display at the 2017 National and you can see some of its parts here also.

    And I miss-spoke regarding the calendar drive gear having 31 pins. It does not have 31 pins. An example with no pins can be seen above in my prior post, 3rd from last photo. This is the movement that has no pins but is drilled for pins.

    2017-01-28 16.49.28.jpg 2018-01-04 17.09.08.jpg 2018-01-04 17.09.20.jpg 15258_E.JPG 20161222_170523.jpg 20161222_170533.jpg 20161222_170546.jpg 20161222_170602.jpg 20161225_142820.jpg H1101-L94832116.jpg ives dial resized 2.jpg ives dial as sold.jpg IMG_2141.JPG IMG_2136.JPG 2017-01-29 17.59.20.jpg 2017-01-30 13.51.47.jpg 20180217_180540.jpg
     
  5. Tom Vaughn

    Tom Vaughn Registered User

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    Jim, thanks for your detailed response! especially all of those great pictures! (Sorry for the delayed response, I've had some computer issues lately). Some people from the museum agree that the differences in movements that are so abundant must have something to do with gradual improvements over time with the design. I think it would be interesting to do a study of these movements and compare them with confirmed original paper labeled movements, maybe we could draw some connections to figure out which movements were exactly made by who. I know Amasa Jr. signed some pieces, and the museum has a Joseph Ives paper label, but I'm not sure if it came with a movement or tall clock. I'll look into the subject a bit more and see what I can find!
    Thanks for the help!
     
  6. Jim DuBois

    Jim DuBois Registered User
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    There are very few of these tall clock movements that feature any identification, in my experience. It is interesting that this paper exists behind the reverse painted glass dial where it will never be seen unless the dial is disassembled.

    While the later work of Ives family, i.e. C. & L.C. Ives, is documented on many labels, some work we think to be by Joseph Ives is very modestly labeled like this label that no one sees? Some of his work carries no claims as to a maker. Other than his Brooklyn model clocks, very few of his nearly 60 years of production work have originally signed dials.

    And to that point, we have seen a couple of signed dials that have proven to be repaints. It is doubtful these few examples originally carried his name. An example of those would be the Atkins octagonal 30 day timepiece shown below. The signature and location are styled in the fashion of his Brooklyn model clocks, and the clock was produced by Atkins & Co. in Conn. not NY. Singular examples with incorrect location and makers information is highly suspect. We did show that clock in the 2017 National Ives display as it was otherwise a pristine example of the 30 day timepiece by Atkins.

    There is one glass tall clock dial, sorry for the very bad photo, but it all I have, that has "Joseph Ives" scratched in reverse in the gold leaf in the dial arch. Per its owner, an Ives expert in his own right, it is the only signed Ives glass dial known to exist.

    So, none of this really assists in defining a timeline for 8 day ww tall clocks by the Ives family. But, it does reflect some of the difficulties we face in trying to better define who did what, where they did it, and why it was done?

    ives arched dial 2.jpg 2017-06-29 10.20.09.jpg 2017-06-29 14.26.10.jpg
     

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