Nearly 52 years in the NAWCC

Discussion in 'Member News and Views' started by dweiss17, Sep 10, 2016.

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  1. dweiss17

    dweiss17 Registered User
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    As a member of the National Association of Watch and Clock Collectors soon going into my 52[SUP]nd[/SUP] year of membership, starting below with a few days apart, I shall post one page each detailing my findings and my experiences across the years of my long and happy time in this NAWCC.

    Our readers are invited to respond to each posted page during its next posting.

    Page one

    As a man writing this story in early September of 2016, in three months I shall be 101 years of age, and intend to live much longer after reaching that pinnacle in the life of a human. In October, I will have entered my 52[SUP]nd[/SUP] year as a member of this horologic organization we call the National Association of Watch and Clock Collectors.

    As a member of Chapter 1 and Chapter 190 and as a person who has seen the attrition of both members - and a number of former NAWCC Chapters in which I held membership …I feel it important that I share these many years of great pleasure I had in knowing; and to associate with my fellow members in the NAWCC – many sadly, have passed on to another world - and also in sharing the joy of discovering, repairing and restoring watches as components that were an important part of our horologic history…made by the American watch companies that no longer exist. And, my personal pleasure in writing about my years in this horological subject.

    My story starts in the fall of 1964, when Fred Breitinger (a member of our Virtual Plaques who have paid dues for fifty years of membership or more in the NAWCC induced me to join this horologic society.) In those years you needed a sponsor to become a member, after receiving NAWCC membership #8331 and in joining Philadelphia Chapter 1…I attended my first Chapter meeting. These meetings were held at that time at the Engineers Club in center city Philadelphia. That first meeting is etched deeply into my memory banks…walking into the entrance, you are met by a beautiful winding staircase that leads you to the second floor where the Chapter meetings were being held. While my memory is very faint of all the happenings at my first meeting with my fellow members of that period…secretary Ernie Cramer greeted me as I walked in and shook my hand and welcomed me as a first time attendee of the Philadelphia Chapter meetings, so did Robert Franks, our first NAWCC President. Franks was also a former President of Chapter 1.

    While I remember very little of that first meeting, in a true sense it started my horologic career; I was smitten with the camaraderie and the watches and clocks on the tables offered for sale among other horologic material. We broke for dinner, of that I remember nothing or what was served that first Friday evening so long ago. More than likely we had a speaker on some horologic subject and possibly slides helping the speaker in his presentation. Frankly, I discovered a world that I never knew existed and it would keep me deeply enthralled all my years following.

    Noticing the men usually brought their wives to these meeting nights, I encouraged Evelyn, my wife to join me at these monthly Friday night affairs. It proved to be a valuable asset to our marriage; she too enjoyed the camaraderie in meeting with the wives of other members at these meetings. Later, in moving our Chapter 1 meetings to the Holiday Inn on City Line Avenue in Philadelphia, from the Engineers Club, we grew tremendously. NAWCC members in surrounding states now had easier access to our meetings by using the highway. City Line Avenue is US route #1 and the key to our Chapter expanding far beyond belief. It was not uncommon for our meetings to have up to 400 tables laden with many horologic treasures. For dinner we had the downstairs banquet room and up to thirty tables seating ten people. We became quite familiar faces to the women who served as our waitresses. In our heyday, we had over 38,000 NAWCC members interested in the art of horology. Today, we may have less than 14,000 active NAWCC members across the human world; of course, we must understand practically any electronic device you hold in your hand will give you the time of day far more accurate than most watches or clocks.
     

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  2. Dave Coatsworth

    Dave Coatsworth Super Moderator
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    400 tables at a Chapter meeting. WOW!
     
  3. dweiss17

    dweiss17 Registered User
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    Some years ago I remember reading how much money some of the NAWCC Chapters donated to the general fund of the NAWCC. Chapter 1 far outweighed all the others with $130.000 in accumulated donations.
     
  4. captainscarlet

    captainscarlet Registered User

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    I always enjoy reading your posts dweiss17, but have not really felt qualified to reply until now. I am 52 years old (A mere whipper snapper) and entered this world as you were joining this fine organisation known as the NAWCC. Long may your posts continue.:)
     
  5. dweiss17

    dweiss17 Registered User
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    #5 dweiss17, Sep 12, 2016
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 12, 2016
    I neglected to mention to open the thumbnail post, please click it three times, it opens large type for easy reading.

    Page two

    We in this age realize the younger man or woman in this 21[SUP]st[/SUP] century has many more modern electronic instruments to draw their interest, other than a mechanical watch or clock, while practically most homes in the early 20[SUP]th[/SUP] century had a clock ticking in some room of their homes. And, we realize many of these younger people in their growing up years before the electronic boom had a wristwatch strapped to their wrist. It had supplanted the pocket watch their fathers or grandfather had in a pocket of their attire. In fact, when I joined the horologic crowd in 1964…all pocket watch companies had ceased to exist, it was no longer an American enterprise.

    Having much more to expound on this horologic bent…I must deviate to the fall of 1986, as a person with a speech handicap, stuttering, and a Philadelphia Chapter member of the National Stuttering Project and in being chosen to start a Newsletter for our Chapter…the newsletter was named “Speaking Out”, it went out to our Philadelphia membership, as well as forty other Chapters across the country.

    In one [Speaking Out] editorial I wrote about the many instances in which some human handicap was designated as a day, week or month to bring awareness to the American public in regards to that human handicap. My editorial relayed my belief that one in every 100 (statistically correct) human has some oral speaking problem. This included every strata of human life from kings, down to the child, man or woman across the world globe. And, that this oral handicapped should have a week named for that handicap…no matter your station in life…fully 80% escape the handicap as the child grows into adulthood, while the 20% now adults so afflicted, often will lead a life that affects friendship, family life, schooling, advancement in your profession or chosen life work, even to meeting the opposite sex, and into marriage and having offspring. We know of youngsters committing suicide because of this oral affliction.

    Two members of our Chapter took up my editorial thought and brought it to the attention of then Senator Roth of Delaware, who brought it up in Congress, and it was unanimous in its passing by Congress and signed into law by President Reagan in May 1988. Now every second week of May is known as National Stuttering Awareness Week; not only that…it took hold and every October 22[SUP]nd[/SUP], it is celebrated in many countries across the seas. This would have never happened were it not for my editorial more than thirty years ago.

    Back to my horologic life…in the summer before
    October 26, 2010, I paid a visit to our horologic Museum in Columbia, PA, and noted no place in our horologic chronology was there even a mention of who founded this horologic enterprise or was there a plaque with our founders’ names. Deciding that had to change, I got in touch with Markus Harris, telling of my idea to create a plaque featuring the names of the officers and members, who in 1943 were responsible for the founding of the National Association of Watch and Clock Collectors. Markus [our Communications Director] obliged and spent about two hours in our NAWCC Library researching the names of the officers and members who had a hand in founding this American horologic behemoth and sent the listing to me. Visiting a plaque making company in Northeast Philadelphia, I paid for a handsome Plaque featuring the names of our founding officers and members…that now hangs on the wall near the elevator as you go to our beautiful second floor that features our employee offices
     
  6. dweiss17

    dweiss17 Registered User
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    It could make a grown man cry!

    I have so much junk [good horologic stuff] scattered throughout the ground floor rec room - where a large folding table is the recipient of many watches and parts in at least 50 cardboard box covers, and with other stuff scattered on a card table, plus two cabinets and on my desk…it adds up to more than 50 years of horologic accumulation. Proof positive, I am a total misfit when it comes to storing worth saving material.

    Just came up from what my used-to-be horologic workshop is/was. It could not have seen me sitting down before my work bench and start repairing or doing something to a pocket watch…for at least the past four-to-five years. The cause; the cartilage in my knees that took a powder and disappeared.

    Feeling much better since the five Hyalgan injections and one cortisone shot into my knees, and after that, waiting close to a month…everything took hold and I now feel at least 50% better than before - and me, brave enough to think I now could do some watch repair work.

    Well the short version is that I did accomplish. With my now less supple aged fingers in taking a stemwind Waltham model 57 apart for cleaning; one of the jewels in the pallet fork was gone (I guess that why it was with the fixable of my watches). Among this monstrous display of junk [good stuff] I have a lot of little plastic boxes, one holds a variety of the Waltham pallets…will take the arbor out of one, screw it into a good pallet fork that has both jewels and put everything into the ultra sonic tank, clean and restore the watch to running condition.
     
  7. David S

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    Dan it makes this "grown man" smile. It is so good to hear you go down to your "workshop" and attempt to work on some of your watches.

    I have arthritis in my back and some hand joints, but have some medication that is working for me so that I can work on clocks.

    Just keep trying and I am pleased that the injections are making you more active.

    David
     
  8. Tyler K

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    Nice Dan! Will you post a picture of the watch you fixed? Do you think you'll try to resell it now, possibly on eBay or at a NAWCC convention? It's good to hear that now your back to work, restoring timepieces that were made even before you were born! As for the watch stuff, I kind of know how you feel. After so many years of collecting you wake up one day and you wonder to yourself... how did I get soooo much stuff??

    Although I've only been interested in watches for a couple years, I have cabinets that line the basement walls filled with watch supplies. My living room has my giant bench at it along with my most recent acquisition, a 1960's L&R cleaning machine with ultrasonic. I bought it from Mr. Capestrain, founder of Capestrain jewels here in Canton. He's 85 and recovering form cancer so he's trying to liquidate. What a relief it must be for you now that your knees feel a bit better!
     
  9. dweiss17

    dweiss17 Registered User
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    Hello Tyler:

    Not so fast. I still have not put the watch I wrote about into the ultra sonic tank for cleaning. On YouTube I read how to make my own watch cleaning fluid for the ultra tank. Made some and will test it today, it should work well since it is similar to the cleaning fluid sold by watch supply houses.

    As for selling some of my watches, I would never use eBay, too many problems. there are other ways in selling watches or other horological materials.

    Once completed, I'll publish the results of overhauling Waltham stemwind #1002984, it should be great.
     
  10. dweiss17

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    Page three

    Also on this pivotal date of October 26, 2010, I presented our NAWCC Message Board with a new Forum…Members News and Views, thanks to one of our former Board of Directors, Mr. John Webb. Before this advent, there was no place where a member could communicate with another, except by NAWCC private mail on the Message Board. I am pleased to report we now have close to 300,000 hits on that Forum with 711 threads and 4586 postings. Also on that date, I delivered the Founders Plaque to our Executive Director J. Steven Humphrey and Markus Harris; the Founders Plaque now hangs on the wall near the entrance to our beautiful second floor that holds the employee offices, as well as some magnificent American clocks and lunch room area and other necessary departments that function in the business of our horologic enterprise. The Founders Plaque would have never become a reality had I not paid a visit to our Museum that summer. While the creation of the Members News and Views drew my attention due to the lack of a Forum where a member could openly communicate with another member. I also take credit and pride in creating this now valuable part of our NAWCC Message Board.

    If memory serves me right, in the year 2006 I joined another NAWCC Chapter of this horologic society. As a member of Chapter 1 since joining the NAWCC, I was looking to expand my association with other members in other NAWCC Chapters. It was in early 2008 that I had an epiphany and created the first NAWCC Calendars using the watches and clocks of the members of that NAWCC chapter. Starting in 2005 and continuing into 2006 and 2007, I had made spiral bound desk calendars featuring the photos of my two feline house companions, Frankie Weiss and the first Johnnie…both cats were of the female gender, no posing was necessary they were willing and beautiful subjects, asleep or awake. So using the NAWCC members’ watches and clocks to create the first NAWCC Calendar took place, it continues to today. They are sold at $10.00 each, with all sales money going to help the NAWCC funding.

    Before I post my further thoughts about producing the first calendar that featured watches and clocks; I must give some of the NAWCC members’ credit for pushing me to register Frankie Weiss as a family member and enlist her as an NAWCC Associate Member. Sending in the proper papers with a $20 check…in due time I received her membership card #167825. This was the first and only time ever that a non-human [a cat] had become a member of the NAWCC. It happens I never realized that all members had to be of the human species and not feline, since pets the world over are recognized as family members. Somehow, sometime later, the NAWCC realized they had registered a cat as a member of the NAWCC. I wrote the “powers that be” I was willing to relinquish her membership. However, feeling this was a [special] first…with a sense of NAWCC humor…Frankie Weiss was to remain an NAWCC member for a full year…since they did not care to return the $20 fee for her membership. Another great honor for me, being the only member to ever have a pet holding membership in this prestigious horologic society.

    Now back to the first NAWCC Calendar produced for an NAWCC Chapter in the year 2008. I hold a copy of that first calendar in my hand…the cover page features a magnificent pocket watch; the description reads enameled Hunter Model, 16 size, produced by D.H. Tissot during the Russian reign of Alexander II 1818-1881. When photos are added to this history of my years in the NAWCC, I shall post three photos of this work of unparalleled horologic skill; the cover photo of this masterpiece just makes the mind comprehend the artistic skill in the presentation of this timepiece featuring the Czar’s likeness, the back cover with family crest, the mechanism, with
     
  11. dweiss17

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    Tomorrow, Sunday 18, 2016, page four of this series will be posted. We wish to express our thanks to all the NAWCC members who take the time to look at and read these postings [memoirs]…that truly reflect the joy in my many years of association with the uncountable number of NAWCC members I have come to know, and to give a word of thanks for their support in being a member of the National Association of Watch and Clock Collectors.
     
  12. dweiss17

    dweiss17 Registered User
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    NAWCC Members: We welcome your replies,your thoughts and your years in this society, as well
    as any horological finds you may have made. STILL A LOT MORE TO COME.

    Page four

    Cyrillic spelling of Alexander’s name on the bridge and the really attractive and beautiful family crest on the back cover, I was happy to be able to share the magnificent parts of this watch in this first NAWCC spiral bound Desk Calendar with our NAWCC membership. The sales money from the calendars bought by the members…were donated to the Chapter to help carry on their business.

    In this paragraph I detail part of what I had accomplished In the early years of my time in the NAWCC, I was gung ho about clocks…The pillar and scroll clock version had a particular appeal to me and I decided I would build one in three quarter size, and use a Seth Thomas hour and half hour striking movement as my source of displaying the time of day. Some years earlier, I bought a large load of African striped mahogany in ¼”, ½” and in ¾” thicknesses to help panel and to build some cabinets for the large downstairs Weiss rec room. I also used this beautiful striped mahogany wood to build five bracket clocks and five grandmother clocks, all featuring the same Seth Thomas movement and may I say without boasting, each one created indeed were good to look at and served their purpose very well.

    In starting to write about my years in this horologic society, I soon realized I could not refer back to certain notes and postings due to a crash of my computer some years ago, and lost much material that I could refer to in order to date and be more accurate in the telling of this serialized story of my doings in the National Association of Watch and Clock Collectors

    Sometime after I disposed of many of the clocks I had accumulated, and keeping a favored number of them; perhaps in my third or fourth year in the NAWCC; I then embarked upon a mission to explore the finding and repairing of pocket watches. It turned out to be my most fruitful period in this wonderful horologic hobby.

    Meeting a person who was a member of Chapter 1 at our Holiday Inn meetings, this member had an interest in wristwatches much deeper than in pocket watches and invited me to visit his home in Philadelphia, where he had a number of pocket watch movements he wanted to sell. (They were part of the horologic material he acquired in buying out several watch house suppliers that were going out of business.)

    Not knowing too much about what was good or bad in the art of acquiring pocket watches; I knew the name Howard was revered among knowing watch collectors. My
    true education and many years in the pocket watch world had started with this visit. Among other pocket watches I bought, were two Howards, one had a serial number in the low 2000s, the other, a serial number in the 24,000 range. Little did I realize I had just purchased two quite scarce to rare Howard pocket watches. One was a number II model, the other was a Coles Escapement that if I remember correctly had no banking pins, it banked on the sides of the escape wheel that had no club feet…it was copied by Howard from the English Coles Escapement. This buy of the watches played a big part in my further education of pocket watch horology.

    It brought to my realization there are probably many more scarce or rare watches to be found. In reading about American watch companies, their histories came into play with the knowledge that certain blocks of watches produced fewer models that would be collectible; and that some watches had more features [complications] than on the ordinary watch, either worn on the wrist or in the pocket, along with the knowledge that some watch companies failed early in their beginnings - due to lack of funding.
     
  13. dweiss17

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    Page five

    Page four leads us into the history of the Adams & Perry Watch Manufacturing Co. and it is an important part of the watch companies that produced very few pocket watches - today’s watch collecting hobbyists have a great interest in the output of these no longer pocket watch companies and eagerly seek the watches that may bear the names of these watch companies from our horological past.

    Saturday, January 19, 2008, I published the story relating the finding of the Adams and Perry pocket watch #1585. And, with more than 33,000 hits following…Greg Frauenhoff started the serial number listing of these few known pocket watches on 12/11/2011…this date that happens to be my 96[SUP]th[/SUP] birthday…the serial number listings now totals about 41 Adams & Perry pocket watches made by the Lancaster Watch Co. successors to the A&P Co. in using their salvaged watch material.

    Its finding was early in the year 2007. Knowing a pocket watch supply house was closing it doors due to a lack of business, as stated earlier; the wristwatch had become the favorite timepiece. The pocket watch was no longer in vogue, neither were suits with vests that had a pocket for the watch. The man, I knew from past years, in buying watch material was responsible for its closing and selling left over material and findings before closing its doors. After buying some watch material stored in cabinet drawers on the main floor; he asked, “Would I like to go to the basement to see if there were other things of interest to me?” Replying yes, we went downstairs to a large room holding other cabinets and some shelves. Looking around, in a box, I saw over 30 nickel [OOO] and [O] size wristwatches with hinged backs and starting to rot watch bands from the period of WW1, buying them at a ridiculous low price, next, looking at a plastic cabinet with little drawers holding various watch parts of no interest to me…however, in one drawer was a very abused gilt pocket watch with a horribly cracked no-name enamel dial held in place to the movement over the dial plate with a metal clamp ring…turning it over, engraved was the No. 1585 with the name Lancaster Watch Co. PENNA.

    I had just discovered one of the rare pocket watches named or called the Adams & Perry pocket watch; using the left over manufactured material and inherited by the Lancaster Watch Co., they produced according to the book written by Charles Crossman, (author of the Early American Watch Companies featuring a short history of each listed watch company), about 100-150 pocket watches in both gilt and nickel, the inscriptions in gilt were in script, on the much fewer nickel production, the name was inscribed in Old English.

    I cannot go into the full story of the progression of restoration of this [in my eyes] rare pocket watch here. Should you care to read the entire story, you can find it on our NAWCC website in the Forum featuring pocket watches; with full descriptions of what was done to further it into a pocket watch running in concordance to the time of an electric clock. However, I can report to repair its various faults this watch wreck was sent first to Florida and after that to Arizona for its need to refurbish certain parts that I did not have the skills to repair.

    Shortly after its publishing, I received an email from a well-known person, a watch repairman…stating his desire to acquire this timepiece. I had no thought of selling it so soon. However, his email described his want to complete the search for watches from each succeeding watch company that occupied the A&P building. It totaled four companies, and the repair cost was far less than his offer…A&P #1585 was sold.
     
  14. dweiss17

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    Click on thumbnail three [3] times to open for easy reading.

    Page six

    My computer crashed quite a few years ago, and I am not positive when I bought the Howard pocket watch described below…I do know I lost a lot of my writing as well as photos of the pocket watches I accumulated over the years, many were bought from dealers on Jewelers Row in center city Philadelphia and most were movements only. My search for hunter model cases in coin silver, gold filled and gold included also the same in open face and cases, plus Silveroid or other similar metal.

    Around April 2008, I wrote and posted a story concerning the two Howard pocket watches I bought a number of years earlier from the wristwatch collector [mentioned on page four] during my visit to his home. One of the pocket watches was a Howard series III “N” model resilient Coles Escapement. Howard and his firm were into constant experimentation in the effort to create the best pocket watch possible and this model “N” was copied from the resilient English Coles Escapement that had no banking pins; it banked on a specially made escape wheel side that did not have the usual club feet seen on an escape wheel. It would take an experienced pocket watch person to realize the banking set up was far different from the way a regular watch banks. Howard made only 535 of this model that in his later thoughts, was a failure.

    Still not being an experienced watch repairman who knew what he was doing, I tried to read whatever literature I had about the Howard watch company and their years of production. One yellow covered booklet authored by Col. George Townsend and signed by him to my name, had many pages of the hand drawn images of pocket watches of the many various American companies who created their manufacture. Townsend, who did a tremendous amount of research into these companies, also was very artistic in rendering the many accurate images of the watches, produced by these companies, each accompanied by descriptive matter.

    (As an aside: in relating a little bit of information about the NAWCC members who were my friends and acquaintances in Chapter 1…it happens the Colonel was a close friend of Dr. Warner Bundens, whenever coming to our Philadelphia Chapter he always stayed at Dr. Bundens home in Woodbury, NJ. Sadly, during one of his stays at the Doctors home, Col. George Townsend had a heart attack and passed away. I do know he left part of his watch collection to Dr. Bundens; in a similar way, my good friend Dr. Bundens, a few years later, also had a heart attack. I lost both, a special friend and an acquaintance. I still treasure a letter the Colonel sent me concerning my need for a scarce, special click spring on an early Howard that needed a repair. I was sent eight of these springs at a cost of $8.00. This past September 6, 2016, I posted a saved obituary of Dr. Bundens passing away September 5, 1987.)

    Getting back to the Coles Escapement pocket watch, I took it apart and put it through an ultra sonic cleaning and reassembled and key wound it, the balance took right off, running with a fine amplitude and installed in a sharp coin silver hunter case that fit perfectly and fastened it to the case…suddenly it stopped. There was more than a simple cleaning to keep this scarce to rare timepieces running. Trying as much as I could, my efforts were a failure. Getting in touch with a master horologic mechanic, Bruce Aldo of Arizona, after some conversation I sent him the movement. Bruce in his observation of the banking mechanism decided the pallet jewels were not properly set to bank on the escape wheel sides. No wonder! Other repairmen who tried to keep a Coles watch running failed in their attempts. Bruce’s logic was simple…the pallet jewels were set in the wrong position to keep this watch running in proper fashion. Adjusted, the watch was returned to me, and the Coles ran perfectly.
     
  15. Tyler K

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    Congrats on getting the watch in working order (with a little help:))! Will you post a picture?
     
  16. dweiss17

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    Tyler: Attached is the Howard resilient Coles Escapement...
     

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  17. Kevin W.

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    Great looking watch Dan, wish you lived closer so i could come over and share our enjoyment of horology.
     
  18. Tyler K

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    Wow! It looks great! I've never seen one of these! Good work.
     
  19. dweiss17

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    Page seven:

    Sometime later, the aforementioned resilient Howard Coles Escapement watch, after I enjoyed having it for a few months, was sold to a Howard collector at a Chapter 1 meeting. Of the 535 made, I understand about 42 may exist…running or not?

    While ruminating concerning the Howard watches I discovered during my NAWCC years…the following story will prove the old cliché…”You never know what is around the corner” carries a lot of truth.

    September 6, 2016, I posted an obituary [from September 5, 1987] on the NAWCC Message Board relating a friend’s passing…Dr. Warner D. Bundens, my friend and a former President of both Chapter 1 and the National Association of Watch and Clock Collectors. We were both former members of a long gone NAWCC Chapter 95 of Cherry Hill, NJ. Now, as previously stated on one of these pages, I must go back a number of years to tell the following story. It was at Chapter 95 I met a young man, I called him the “mad genius”, he could look at a complicated watch and discern by just a quick glance at the movement, the needed repair on such a timepiece not functioning correctly. Tom became a repairman for me on some watches I did not have the skill to repair. Working from his home, he had three work benches besides A galaxy of tools I had no working knowledge of…I was there to pick up a watch on which he had done some repair for me.

    On one of the benches - Tom was working on a complicated watch, he also had another watch running dial side down with the screw on back off…looking at the timepiece as it lay on his bench, it had no engraving on the plate, just beautifully damascened with a sun ray pattern…the plate looked remarkably similar to the keywind Howard I bought a few weeks earlier from a dealer on jewelers row in downtown Philadelphia, except this watch was stem wound and set. And, it had the same brown screws as on my keywind that held the dial legs tight to the sun rayed movement. Tom asked me if I would like to buy it, saying yes, for $50.00 it was mine. The back cover screwed down, he handed me the watch, this nice looking dial was nameless, with the hour symbols in Arabic numerals, and with red five minute markers outside the attractive eye appealing dial.

    Finishing our other business, I was anxious to drive back home and remove the dial by taking off the hands and then unscrew the brown looking screws that held the dial to the top plate. In doing so…I had found the only watch to ever leave the Howard factory with its plates un-engraved, no name or serial number. And a top plate that looked eerily similar to my keywind Howard…furthering my belief…I found the only Howard pocket watch to ever leave the factory un-engraved, now housed in a Silveroid sidewinder case.

    Home, at my workbench I took this strange watch apart, the five serial numbers inside the bottom plate were punched out, the balance cock had a three serial number. Thinking I found the only watch to not be engraved and a product of the Howard Watch Company…I did all the research I could think of, and still could not

    fathom why this beautiful timepiece would have no Howard name on its plates or dial…coming up with the theory that possibly a Howard employee took a discard or pilfered this movement for his personal use…and used the O’Hara dial and black special filigree and beautiful hands to disguise its Howard pocket watch look.
     
  20. dweiss17

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    The finding and story of this strange un-engraved pocket watch fabricated solely out of Howard material, except for the beautiful dial and hands brought many thousands of hits and numerous replies on the two former NAWCC Chapters, plus on our Message Board…while it was disputed as a purely Howard pocket watch made by Howard…the consensus was by the majority of posters…since the movement contained all Howard parts of their manufacture…it could be a Howard pocket watch.

    One well-known Howard expert remarked…in similar words…its value exists in what it is - rather than what it represents as a Howard factory produced timepiece. As with all the watches that came into my hands…this rarity was no exception…it was sold during the Cleveland NAWCC Convention to a buyer who at that time possessed around 800 [verified] Howard watches in both movements and full cased pocket watches. He was sent over to my tables by another Howard dealer who was at this Convention. Upon the passing of the original buyer…the timepiece was acquired by an NAWCC member - I have no need to name.

    Over the many years of my association in this organization, it’s impossible to count the number of NAWCC members who visited my tables and bought either watches or clocks. The clocks were collected and sold during my earlier years of membership and they were beginning to be too much of a burden to lug around from show to show. So I decided to keep a favored number and sell the rest and concentrate on pocket watches. This thought turned out to be most fortunate. In driving around the city of Philadelphia and the areas adjacent…including Jewelers Row in center city, where I made great connections when it came to buying pocket watches and the buying of parts and other material to repair those that were in need of such.

    During these early and [now special years in my thoughts] I was getting a valuable
    education in meeting and becoming friendly with the many supply houses of this community that sold watches and the horologic material that would aid me in repair of the many timepieces purchased from them. The area surrounding Jewelers Row was a veritable oasis that watered my appetite for acquiring many of the fine and often scarce pocket watches in my years of dealing with these merchants devoted to the horologic business and its wares. I note one horologic house that was run by a former watch repairman who took me under his mentorship that resulted in the furthering of my horologic education; not only that, I bought some of the implements and tools he used before his venture into the business he was now the owner of.

    From another of the dealers I became acquainted and friends with; his partner would go around to the many watch repairmen situated in the area and buy up much of thecomplete and parts pocket watches these shops no longer had need of, the pocket watch was passé. Time and the wristwatch and style of clothing did their part in the result of the pocket watch becoming obsolete. Just as in the future, the quartz and other horologic innovations would make the windup wristwatch also obsolete.

    Working at my profession in the Graphic Arts, I was close to center city, and it would give me great access to Jewelers Row in center city that was the connecting hub to this new horologic world I discovered some years earlier. It would be impossible for me to relate all the wonderful horological findings I made during my lunch breaks in buying pocket watches and other material I needed in my pursuit of this horologic.enterprise. Often I would have to buy one complete lot in order to get the one or two timepieces that drew my eye, and wanted. I have an immense accumulation of stuff.
     
  21. dweiss17

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    To read the full story of this remarkable and unknown find of a pocket watch fabricated from Howard material and possibly done by a Howard workman - who decided to make his own timepiece solely out of Howard material and to suit his purpose - disguised the timepiece with an O'Hara pretty dial and special filigree black hands - while using a Silveroide case in sidewinder style. No other watch ever left the Howard factory without the Howard name being engraved of the plates.

    Please go to Pocket Watches on our Message Board and scroll down to the un-engraved Howard, the story is written in full detail with many pictures.
     
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  23. dweiss17

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    At the bottom of this thread, you will see a black box...on near the left side below the top you will see a blue line click on that, it will send an arrow to to top of the page, click on that...it opens the full story text with pictures.
     
  24. dweiss17

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    I must call it horologic stuff because that is what it is. Much of what eventually will find its way to the garbage dump. The large accumulation of dials acquired over these many years will be sent to a friend in California who specializes in horologic watch parts; many of these dials are worth saving, a few could be scarce to rare. Having over fifty [box covers holding all this stuff - watch material] it is totally impossible to make head or tails of what should be saved and will be dumped.

    Promising myself to spend some time sorting out what will be worth the effort of saving, I have not lived up to that thought; now that my knees are not as bad as the problem they were a few months ago…I can now stand for a longer time and at my discretion go through this “stuff” to sort out the worthwhile and put the rest into the receptacle marked garbage.

    All this horologic material was moved from metal shelves in the area where I have my work bench and onto a large folding table piled high in the rec room. Now it is apparent the table piled high is an eye sore in a large ground floor room that once held so many gatherings and barbecues. The back door leads to the patio and the two barbeques I have not used in some years. One is propane; the other smaller one is a Weber domed barbeque using charcoal as its cooking source. I’d be happy for anyone to come and take them away.

    Enough of this talking about food being grilled and barbecued, time to get back to the world of horology. Honestly, I wish I had half of the timepieces that went through my hands and were repaired and sold. But, as fortune would have it…I never had the capital to keep what I discovered and sold these many years of my career as a horology buff or a participant in this horologic hobby. Yet, I feel all the better for it, having spent so many years reading about the many facets horology presents to the true hobbyist; the many years my hands picked up a true horologic treasure either in the form of a clock or wristwatch or a pocket watch and marveled at the genius that went into producing that horologic gem. Little did I realize attending that first meeting at the Engineer’s Club, the effect it would have all the years following my walking up that beautiful, winding staircase so many long years ago.

    The following pages will be devoted to one pocket watch and one exceedingly special rare French Fountain Clock. Early in the years of my involvement with clocks, I sent out printed post cards to Philadelphia antique dealers offering my service as a repairman to any clocks they may have that needed repairs. Getting back a few responses I made the friendship of two dealers whose memory I treasure today. One dealer, besides repairing his clocks, got me interested in the growing of flowers. Both in the varieties of perennial and annual.

    This was an added blessing to my curious mind…I started reading about horticulture and of the many species of flowers available from seeds to the ready to plant variety sold by the stores that dealt in such. And, along with that, I started a plot that featured big boy tomatoes, cucumbers, squash and a variety of peas. It was my wife’s greatest pleasure to cut the blooming flowers in a variety of numbers and put them into vases in every room upstairs in our living quarters. Many a night we’d eat a late dinner…cutting the flowers and arranging them into eye appealing decor was foremost in her mind when she came home from her work…Evelyn worked for a Family Service helping immigrant families to get settled in Philadelphia and when ever possible to help ease their lives to a better family existence.
     
  25. dweiss17

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    Another flashback:

    Fast forward to Friday, October 7, 2016, I am thinking about writing the finishing few pages of this little story concerning my 52 years in this horologic Association. I realize during all these accumulated years much has happened to the large family I was borne to…they are all gone. I am the last survivor of many good people…people who led lives of care and decency. Never has there ever been any scandal involving human misdeeds attributed to the large family that emigrated from Romania to this country while my parent’s sisters, I understand, their male spouses may have come from other countries. My wife’s parents were of Russian descent; Evelyn, my wife, spent all her working years of employment in a Philadelphia agency devoted to the settling of new immigrants into the American way of life with as much help possible.

    Now, back to my clock and watch career in this great horologic society. In making many discoveries of products of the no longer American pocket watch companies, I have described a few of these important finds and passing them on to collectors who could afford the expense of adding them to their collections of the American pocket watch genius in the producing of these watches – that sometimes were the equals or better to the foreign versions of pocket watches that told the time of day, and often with extra complications.

    Another of these examples is the scarce to rare Adams & Perry #1448, a now completed pocket watch that I called “The Watch from Hell.” To begin with, it was cut down to 18 size - I like to think by the Lancaster factory, it also had the side screws to hold an 18 size dial by its legs. However, the badly battered non-legged dial was in the original clamp on ring that fitted the 19 size watch. It had no worth to this almost total wreck of a movement that has a badly twisted hairspring, and the motion work was missing, and no hands, I think the arbor for the second hand was broken off. The wreck was sent to me by the person who bought A&P #1585 from me…he bought some Lancaster material and this wreck was among the lot. With the hope I could do something to facilitate it to a running time keeping watch. Letting him know it was badly damaged and almost beyond worth the cost of repair, I was told to keep it. I had already spent some money on its repair of a hairspring and re-pivoting for the second hand. And, its owner did not want to go further.

    To me, it was more a matter of accomplishment than repair of this pocket watch that became mine by a matter of default. I spent untold hours among my huge supply of junk pocket watch material in finding the correct motion work. In short, the gears beneath the dial which makes the hour hand travel twelve times slower than the minute hand. This mechanism consists of a cannon pinion, a minute wheel and the pinion and hour wheel. More than once I was wrong in my selection of these important parts that would cause the hands to tell the correct time. However, while it took a lot of stick to it…finally I came up with the correct parts that did not alter the function or worth of this important piece of American pocket watch history.

    Going through my supply of hunter pocket watches, even if I had to rob Paul to pay Peter. No luck, I did not find what I thought was period to this early American pocket watch. I had the correct Lancaster marked dial to fit the holes drilled for that purpose. Getting in touch with a pocket watch repairman, I found the perfect hand engraved hunter period case with horses’ heads and a floral design on each cover.
     
  26. dweiss17

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    This cover to A&P #1448 was a masterpiece of hand engraving. While I do not remember everything that went into its magnificent engraving and design, it was the one of the prettiest watch cases I ever had the good fortune to possess. Thinking back, it was a Monarch case, 20 years stamped on the inside cover, the back featured the wonderful horses and the front cover had the eye appealing floral design. This was one where the covers were photographed in great detail and all was lost when my computer crashed. I still may have put the details and pictures on a disc, I’ll have to look through quite a few of discs that carry many years of the photos I saved.

    The sale of A&P #1448…I had not attended a meeting of Chapter 1 in quit sometime, possibly a couple of years due to my bad knees. I seem to think I may have made mention on the Message Board that I’ll be showing this watch at the next meeting if I could get help to carry my merchandise inside to the table I reserved earlier. In my
    speaking to a young lady who offered to help me attend the meeting, this was done.

    No sooner had I unpacked my watches and displayed them on the table, along comes a man who asks if I bought the Adams & Perry with me and that he’d like to look at it. Opening the little glass covered wooden box with felt lining I took out the watch, wound it and handed it to him. He looked at both covers and then pressed the crown to open the dial side and without opening the back…”How much do you want for it?” The tag had a $2000 label along with its info. We quickly settled for a little less. Writing a check after I asked him for full information that satisfied me; he
    was a New Jersey member of long standing and I gave him a felt watch bag to put the timepiece into, thanked me and walked away. Leaving me with the feeling he came to the meeting especially with the notion to buy this scarce to rare timepiece.

    Deciding I was getting too old, too soon, why leave some fine and scarce to rare watches that my heir would not care for, and me already into my middle nineties - it would be best to make sure some collector would appreciate and pay for watches that I found - and devoted a lot of care and much more expense to repair.

    Here, I want to flashback to my earlier years in the National Association of Watch and Clock Collectors…always having two tables to show at my horologic finds each month at Chapter 1…before I could even display and open all my wares at these shows, a horde of would-be buyers [special watches] always congregated at my tables…more than once or twice I had to tell them nothing will be sold until all my cartons are opened and displayed…it was no use, some of these so called buyers did not understand the words no or please…and would start picking up watches from the specially made trays already opened. We did have some NAWCC members who had no compunctions…with them it was first come…first serve.

    I also had some wonderful people, who monthly would come to my tables, and buy watches every meeting. One man I fondly remember, only wanted gold watches no matter the maker’s name. Another would buy only the best watches of those displayed that month. I cannot remember all the NAWCC members who would come to my tables month after month just to say hello and ask if I had a certain make of timepiece they were looking for. All in all…honestly, I would not know if even one of these people were alive today. Being an NAWCC Chapter 1 member all these years, I have seen many changes, often not for the best.
     
  27. dweiss17

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    Over the many years of my association with this group, I have seen numerous changes; many become members and find a new home they never knew even existed. The opposite is also true; many joined and found this horologic group was not what they were looking for. It takes many people of like mind to beget the years we have existed as harmonious and flourishing we are in spite of a decline in membership from more than 38,000 to probably less than 14,000 today.

    Of course, we must take into consideration that today, any electronic gadget you can hand hold, likely, may accurately give you the time of day. Humans have inhabited this earth for probably more years than it is known…no one can tell us for sure. We hear human hunters bored holes in sticks that cast shadows helping tell when nightfall was coming. Other created shadows using large rocks, Still others invented the clepsydra and still others invented the sun dial that cast shadows on a mechanism built for that purpose. The hour sand cast was also a teller of time[FONT=&amp]. In 1656 Dutch mathematician, astronomer, physicist and horologist Christian Huygens invented the pendulum clock in 1656 and patented it in 1657. This technology reduced the loss of time by clocks from about 15 minutes to about 15 seconds per day.[/FONT]
    [FONT=&amp]
    Huygens contracted the construction of his clock designs to clockmaker Salomon Coster [of [/FONT][FONT=&amp]The Hague[/FONT][FONT=&amp]], who actually built the clock. Huygens was inspired by investigations of pendulums by Galileo Galilee beginning around 1602. Galileo discovered the key property that makes pendulums useful timekeepers: isochronism, which means that the period of swing of a pendulum is approximately the same for different sized swings. Galileo had the idea for a pendulum clock in 1637, which was partly constructed by his son in 1649, but neither, lived to finish it. The introduction of the pendulum, the first harmonic oscillator used in timekeeping, increased the accuracy of clocks enormously, from about 15 minutes per day to 15 seconds per day leading to their rapid spread as existing 'verge and foliot' clocks were retrofitted with pendulums.[/FONT][FONT=&amp] Looking back we really cannot tell who really invented the time telling clock, however, we do know the scientists and clock makers who brought it to near perfection…the most accurate clock are those run by atomic power. Of which the average person like me does not have the slightest idea what makes it run so accurately. I have read it may lose one second in over 300,000 years. Now that’s a real time teller.[/FONT]
    [FONT=&amp]
    We give another look back and see that man has reduced the clock to his whims in the story of telling time…we see birds announcing the hours, we see figurines moving in unison in circles within the clock mechanism to give you the hour of the day…we hear pocket watches chime the minute, quarter hour and hour; we have clocks that chime on bells or gongs that do the same. We’ve had watches and clocks that sold for a dollar to millions of dollars. Of course, the million dollar watches or clocks were the exception to the rule. Over the many years of clock making, the styles and functions of these time tellers have gone from A to Z in their manufacture. One of the prettiest to come my way was the French Fountain Clock… a broken down clock from an importer of French clocks who did not want to go to the expense involved in its repair. I could not date [/FONT]
     
  28. dweiss17

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    Salomon Coster

    From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia


    Salomon Coster (c. 1620–1659) was a Dutch clockmaker of the Hague, who in 1657 was the first to make a pendulum clock, which had been invented by Christiaan Huygens (1629-1695). Coster's earliest pendulum clocks were signed "Samuel Coster Haghe met privilege", indicating that he had been authorized by the inventor to make such clocks.[SUP][1][/SUP] John Fromanteel, the son of a London clockmaker, Ahasuerus, went to work for Coster. He was one of many foreign clockmakers to soon make pendulum clocks following the prototype by Huygens and Coster. A contract was signed on 3 September 1657 between Salomon Coster and John Fromanteel which allowed Fromanteel to continue making the clocks. This clock design was heralded as a new beginning in the clockmaking industry, due to its level of timekeeping accuracy which was previously unheard of.
    The oldest extant pendulum clock is signed by Salomon Coster and dated 1657. It is on display at the Boerhaave Museum in Leiden, the Netherlands.[SUP][2][/SUP] Coster died a sudden death in 1659.

    References


    Hans van den Ende, et al.: "Huygens's Legacy, The Golden Age of the Pendulum Clock", Fromanteel Ltd., 2004,



    • Hans van den Ende,: "Huygens's Legacy, The Golden Age of the Pendulum Clock", Fromanteel Ltd., 2004

    • van Kersen, Frits & van den Ende, Hans (2004). Oppwindende Klokken - De Gouden Eeuw van het Slingeruhrwerk 12 September - 29 November 2004 [Exhibition Catalog Palais Het Loo]. Apeldoorn: Paleis het Loo.
    • Hoijmaijer, Hans (2005). Telling time - Devices for time measurement i museum Boerhaave - A Descriptive Catalogue. Leiden: Museum Boerhaave.
    • No Author given (1988). Christiaan Huygens 1629-1695, Chapter 1: Slingeruurwerken. Leiden: Museum Boerhaave.
    • R. Memel en V. Kersing: Salomon Coster, de Haagse periode; het Tijdschrift 2014-4 en 2015-1
     
  29. dweiss17

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    this clock; neither could the 38,000 NAWCC paying members. Today we may have less than 14,000 and a number of them are Associate Members and do not pay full dues. It seems the more electronic implements we possess, the less time we spend with our horologic love…the world of watches and clocks, and their all but consuming history…that was so important to us when we first looked upon a watch or clock that held such a mystery for us. This French Fountain Clock was indeed a mystery…and assuch was the rare Spiral Fountain Clock I inherited from one of the Antique dealers that answered my post card in which I offered my clock repair services in the late 1960’s and early 1970’s. The clock was a total mess, a wreck to the mechanism that drove the spirals simulating flowing water. Someone, years ago, had let go of the click spring that held the ratchet and the huge barreled spring let go with such force that it damaged three wheels, luckily, none of the arbors were bent otherwise it would have been worse a wreck than at the present. Telling the owner of the Antique Store it probably was a matter beyond repair due to the fact where in the world would I find another two inch or so motor with a platform escapement to keep time?

    I was told to keep or junk it…the repairs would be extremely expensive….besides were would I find such little clock to fit and with a platform escapement. The dial had no winding hole. In the original story I posted so many years ago, the clock mechanism was gone and fitted with a battery of German make, being so old, the battery leaked whatever fluid it held at one time.

    In taking a closer look at this horologic monstrosity, I noticed one of the glass spirals that simulated flowing water when turning was broken away from the brass socket in which it was held…not worth thinking about trying to repair this clock probably fabricated around the 1860’s - it was put in a corner of my workshop to gather years of dust. I tried to find a glass fabricator that made such twisted glass spirals was a task impossible. No American glass maker ever made such parts and I was not about to look overseas (France) find one. It would have cost a small fortune to have a glass blower duplicate the broken spiral.

    One day, idly looking through an NAWCC Mart magazine I turned to a page that featured repairs to clock mechanisms, becoming a little bit interested, I read further, this guy was in Ohio and had a phone number, calling him we had a nice conversation; explaining the best I could I told him of the problems that turned the glass spirals and his answer was he could do the repairs, if I did not like his price, all I’d lose was the postage to and from. Making a long story shorter, he did what I had asked him to do and sent him a check for $450.00. The two spirals that turned to simulate water flowing into the cut glass little tank worked perfectly. I still had the broken spiral at the top that would not turn due to the glass spiral was broken off about a quarter inch from the socket that held it in place to turn.

    Giving the top of the clock another look, I noticed the brass trim hid the cup that held the spiral in place…while my mind was about 40 or so years younger at that time…I had a brainstorm! Extend the cup with a brass piece to fit inside the area to hold the glass spiral. This was done. Now all three spirals turned in unison to simulate the flow of water into the cut glass tank, surrounded by other beautiful trim it was a pleasure to behold. Even though my mind was 60 years or older…I still had the marbles rolling around without a hitch. And they were hitting on all cylinders without a hiccup. But still one problem existed…where in the world would I find the proper clock to make this - the beauty it once was? I did not want to use a battery to
     
  30. dweiss17

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    clock to keep time. I did not feel just right having such a beautiful and rare clock fabricated by some unknown French genius who had a horologic bent, not only for clocks – but for the beauty a timekeeper could represent. While I just loved the way the spirals turned and represented flowing water into the cut glass tank…it still was my disappointment to come so far in the repair of this wonderful piece of horologic art…I covered it with a large towel, let the spring run down, and put it back where it was sitting before the repairs were done to the spiral mechanism.

    Even spending around $500.00 on repair and shipping, the money was well spent – should I never find what I needed to complete this beautiful timepiece. My life as a bug in the horological sense would continue, even if I never found the proper clock with platform escapement I had dozens of other projects to work on. Building the cabinets and paneling the downstairs rec room and stairs leading to the living quarters was done years before this project. I even built five bracket clocks and five grandmother clocks that were well received by family and buyers. We still had one project to accomplish in furnishing our house; my wife Evelyn wanted a special lamp for the two step tables I had to build; we looked everywhere, but couldn’t find what she had in mind. Finally, I drew up the plans and built them…knowing Rick Merritts who visited our tables just about monthly to see what he could buy in the way of horological material for Merritts Antiques of Douglasville, PA. We decided to drive there one Friday when we both could take a day off from our respective jobs. We knew they received much antique material from overseas; perhaps, they’d have the lamp she wanted to finish our house decorating.

    The drive to Merritts was about 40 miles from our northeast Philadelphia home. We arrived about 11:00 AM and went into the lamp shop area…Evelyn found a boy and girl English Staffordshire figurine ready to be wired for a lamp. I think we got the shade elsewhere. That done, I wanted to go into the clock shop area and give a look around to see if there was anything of interest to me.

    Miracles do happen!

    In one of the cubby holes in a wall cabinet…was sitting the resolution to many years of hope in finding the exact thing I needed to finish a project I started at least twelve years before…there was a familiar dial with Roman numerals, a little more than two inches across with a clock and platform escapement; just what I was looking for all these long years. I could not believe my eyes, putting a little pressure on the main wheel, the platform escapement clicked away to my great surprise and relief that I just found the mother lode…the little clock with escapement that would allow me to finally to finish this longtime magnificent horologic problem.

    After doing our business at Merritts we drove someplace and had lunch before I drove back home. Ask me what I had for lunch…no memory…my mind was too busy with what I just bought, it had a $40.00 tag…I would have paid ten times that and even more. What is remarkable the original dial looked so much alike the one I found at Merritts it was frightening! Why did Evelyn not get the figurine she wanted before our trip to Merritts Antiques? Sometimes circumstances can have the ability to make your day one of joy, or one of misery, This day, for both Evelyn and me…was one of pure joy…we both accomplished - she in her way, me in mine. Now this beautiful horologic masterpiece can once more function the way intended; not only to function as a timekeeper…but a horologic clock of sheer beauty.
     
  31. dweiss17

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    #31 dweiss17, Nov 12, 2016
    Last edited: Nov 12, 2016
    Today, I will finish the piece I started,"My almost 52 years in the NAWCC." It just happens I have a lot of other things to do which includes much writing about my long years on this earth. I know I will dredge up memories of hurt that I thought I had buried deeply into the recesses of my aged brain. I will write about the dreams I dreamt, some coming true...other gathering the cobwebs of time that can never be totally forgotten. I will write about a family of Aunts, Uncles, Cousins, my eight siblings, my parents and a host of other people I came to know over the many years of this long life going on to age 102 years...it will not be easy to recall so many of the events, the happenings, even the joys I have been fortunate enough to enjoy. It is sad to report they are all gone...I am the last of the Mohicans...the last Weiss with unadulterated blood that came from Romania. All the others have gone unto another world we know nothing about.

    At my age, I have no real family left, other than offspring of my brothers or sister, and their children. We all carry some of the Weiss blood that came to this country from Romania to escape the misery heaped upon a certain race of people. I would love to write about the names we all come to know from the history of the Pharos and even long before their reign...but, under our present NAWCC rules that is strictly forbidden.

    On past pages of our NAWCC history, I have written much about the three felines I adopted to help relieve the loneliness of a person. even aged in those years, and the comfort of having them as house companions. And, how the tortoiseshell Frankie Weiss became the only non-human to ever hold membership in this great horologic enterprise.
     
  32. dweiss17

    dweiss17 Registered User
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    Page fifteen

    I do not know how to explain or how to use the necessary words on how to describe my feelings in finding this little clock with a platform escapement. I can only say, “It was a dream come true.” That I have been a dreamer all my long life and had dreams come true and other dreams fade away with dust covering them over is far beside the point.’’

    Thanks to some French horological genius more than 150 years ago, I was able by hook or crook to restore his wonderful effort in creating the Fountain Clock…a clock of immense beauty, not only in seeing the spirals turning, but the structure and the dimensions of this rare clock was like that of a painting that drew respects of awe

    in seeing it for the first time. So it was with this clock and the graceful lines that underlined its beauty…even as a piece of furniture that had no movement.

    Just looking at the spirals turning and simulating the flow of water into the tank, made special for that purpose, gave me the most wonderful horologic thrill I ever had in all my 51-52 years of discovering watches or clocks of unusual merit. The repairing and determination not to give up in my hope of restoring this masterpiece of horologic excellence to its original glory…was more than just hope! It was a horologic miracle come true.

    My mind wandered back to the day it was fashioned and running; what kind of a dwelling or French palace was this clock situated in so many years ago. Were its owners people of royalty; I’m sure it had to be more than the common French citizen of that period who could own such a masterpiece…the work of a horologic clockmaker who had dreams of his own and true to his personal dream…made it come true, I am sure he was delighted with his handiwork and his horologic skill. As I’m sure did any person whoever laid eyes upon it…telling the time and simulated flowing water into its glass diamond thatched tank.

    Without pictures this would be just a story of words, written with sincerity and the trust that my words could paint the picture I wanted it to be. However, with early foresight in photographing this French Fountain Clock, I am able to present the picture and the sizes of its features on the next and final page of this story. I have other photos, but I think this one photo tells the story to its best advantage.

    In conclusion, I kept the clock running daily for about two years and thought it time to take it to a Chapter 1 meeting and sell it…if my price was met. Need I say it was bought within an hour of being set up on my tables…one clock seller in the room built over the swimming pool came to the table where I set it up…looked at it from every view possible and asked me for my price. Need I say it sold for more than any fine and expensive watch or clock I ever owned. Taking over twelve years to finalize a rare beautiful clock and restore it to its former glory…it paid off.

    The following page has the photo and dimensions of this rare French Fountain Clock taken long before it was sold.
     
  33. dweiss17

    dweiss17 Registered User
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    #33 dweiss17, Nov 12, 2016
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    Please click on thumbnail

    This is Page sixteen

    Page16.jpg
     
  34. dweiss17

    dweiss17 Registered User
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    Page seventeen

    This paged story starts my 52[SUP]nd[/SUP] year in the National Association of Watch and Clock Collectors. During the many years I met untold numerous people, both male and female who became my friends and my fellow members in this NAWCC. Nature, as it will, has played its role in those blessed with long years of life, while others have gone unto new worlds…however, not of their choice.

    In the finding of these gifts – unexplained horological treasures – those have been described elsewhere on these pages and also on Chapters no longer with us. These finds were important in the horological sense; they brought to light the only Howard pocket watch to ever leave the factory without being inscribed with the Howard name on its plates. Years back, I featured an Adams & Perry pocket watch #1585 that started the serial listings of these watches…while less than 50 have been reported as existing, running or not, the hits on that serial listing numbers beyond 33,000; a record for a company that really produced only one pocket watch in all its existence; the Lancaster & Keystone Watch Companies used A&P left over material.

    During these many, many long years as a member of National Association of Watch Collectors…clocks and watches have passed through my hands, by the dozens and dozens, into the hands of other horologic enthusiasts who visited my tables month after month, year after year. I was fortunate to live in Philadelphia, who in center city had the hot bed of Jewelers Row….it was there I found so many of the valued pocket watches eagerly sought after by NAWCC members across the breath of the United States. My wife Evelyn and I visited NAWCC Chapters along the East coast and attended numerous Regionals and Conventions across the country.

    For Evelyn, it was a bonanza of meeting and making new friends of the wives and lady friends that accompanied their man or husband. For me, it was more like a high one might get from some intoxicant or illegal drug. I received a great education in reading and writing about all this horological material that had its beginnings when man first walked the earth and noticed his shadow on the ground.

    The education I received in this horologic venue was important enough for me to make the discovery our NAWCC Message Board lacked a place where we could as members communicate with one another. The Members News and Views came from that. So did the 50-year membership Plaques…at this date we have 318 members who donated 50 years of their lives to this pursuit. Another venture was noticing we never honored our Founders…from that came the Founders Plaque…inscribed are the titles and membership of our 52 Founders…dated November 7, 1943.

    I wonder how many of our members have ever seen the Statue of Liberty in person, a gift to the USA from France. I will close with what I have described earlier on some of the pages - another gift from some French dreamer. The French Fountain Clock. It has three spirals turning in unison to appear as water flowing into a cut glass tank. It has a little clock with a platform escapement that tells the time of day. It is the dream of some French clock maker…who dreamt a dream that came true, and still functions as it should in someone’s home.

    This little masterpiece of allegoric symbols was created to delight the eyes of the beholder with its many symbols and expression of beautiful trimmings made over 160 years ago. I no longer am its precious keeper…in my heart…it will always remain the finest example of the horologic dreamer who makes his dreams come true.
     
  35. novicetimekeeper

    novicetimekeeper Registered User
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    The chap who has looked after my larger clocks had an ormolu gilt clock with the same effect in his workshop a while back, it had a boy on top with a pitcher and the water was pouring from that.

    It really was effective and I imagine by flickering gas or oil lamp it would have been quite impressive.
     
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