R. Blakeslee Jr. Weight Driven Steeple

Neil Levette

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Jun 15, 2017
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I’ve recently had the opportunity to acquire a clock which from the outside appears to be a nice little mid 19th century steeple clock with a reverse painted tablet. It’s only when you open the door and look inside that you discover that it has some unusual features.

The label states that this is a “Davies Patent Lever Clock Patented August 1846 Manufactured in Plymouth Connecticut and Sold by R. Blakeslee, Jr. 54 John Street, N.Y” and that the label was printed by “Holman and Gray, Book, Job Printers, 90 Fulton St. N.Y.” Both of these references can be confirmed by a review of Palmer’s books which confirms that R. Blakeslee Jr. & Co. was indeed in business at that address and search’s of other sources indicate that Holman and Gray were in Business at 90 Fulton Street in 1851. Palmer also provides another interesting reference to another business relationship. According to Palmer, between 1841 and 1855, Morse (Myles) and Blakeslee (R. Jr.) were manufacturing small 30 hour brass movement clocks in Plymouth Connecticut. These references place the age of the clock circa 1850-1851.

The feature that signals that this clock is not your typical small steeple is it’s a weight driven 30 hour clock and has a rare lyre shaped Davies Patent Lever movement. Things get a little more interesting since the weight arrangement is asymmetrical. By this I mean the drop of the weights is the same on both the time and strike sides however, the length of the time side cord is twice as long as the strike side. This is achieved by the use of a compound pulley configuration on the time side. Additionally, the time side weight is twice as heavy as the strike side. Also, the time side weight can only be installed one way, as there is a groove cut into one face so that it can clear time side mechanism.

I’ve found quite a bit of information on Davies Patent Lever Movements in the NAWCC Bulletins and I’m hoping member can share some pictures of other weight driven steeple clocks. Further, if any body can share more knowledge about other clocks by this maker I’d appreciate hearing from you.

Finally, this clock is 20 inches tall, 10 inches wide and 4 inches deep. Runs well and keeps good time.

Cheers, enjoy the photos and if you have any questions...

—Neil—


FCAD1D76-E080-4F90-BBF4-692B7F8FCBC2.jpeg F7E702A9-C4C4-469F-982B-35787853F355.jpeg EEA19FE0-8B6D-4748-BE9A-48DC6C6B4E65.jpeg A0416FE7-62EB-46AE-950F-5355CDF766F3.jpeg AFD6D7BB-3B6D-49A9-934D-3FFEAB124C40.jpeg A4DCCB50-141F-46D7-A93A-CB79DA5A0CC0.jpeg 52979023-FF33-475C-95B0-43280229EE9F.jpeg FCAD1D76-E080-4F90-BBF4-692B7F8FCBC2.jpeg 9C6D529F-571D-4EA2-B110-91CF32FC7DF2.jpeg EEA19FE0-8B6D-4748-BE9A-48DC6C6B4E65.jpeg EEA19FE0-8B6D-4748-BE9A-48DC6C6B4E65.jpeg F7E702A9-C4C4-469F-982B-35787853F355.jpeg F7E702A9-C4C4-469F-982B-35787853F355.jpeg
 
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Jim DuBois

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You will find your clock was featured in the NAWCC Bulletin Dec 1959, pages 71, 72. Log In

There is only one other weight-driven steeple clock of which I am aware and that would be the one from Lindy Larson's collection sold several years ago. Thanks to Jim Price for this information and Cattone's for the photo
1604518668654.png
 
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Neil Levette

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Jun 15, 2017
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Thank you Jim! This is more than I was hoping for as it helps me filling some of the gaps in this clocks story. From the time of publishing the article in the Bulletin. I know of a couple of other stops in it’s travels. These include Auburn NY, Ottawa Ontario, an Auction house in New Hamburg Ontario, and now into my collection. The only update on condition is that in its travels some clever soul changed the time side weight to a compound weight configuration. The clock now runs happily for a full 24hrs rather than the 8 hours stated in the article.

Maybe there are some others out there that can help fill in some more of its history.

Thanks for helping me document another chapter in its travels and clear up some questions that I had.

Cheers,

—Neil—
 

rmarkowitz1_cee4a1

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Nov 26, 2009
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I’ve recently had the opportunity to acquire a clock which from the outside appears to be a nice little mid 19th century steeple clock with a reverse painted tablet. It’s only when you open the door and look inside that you discover that it has some unusual features.

The label states that this is a “Davies Patent Lever Clock Patented August 1846 Manufactured in Plymouth Connecticut and Sold by R. Blakeslee, Jr. 54 John Street, N.Y” and that the label was printed by “Holman and Gray, Book, Job Printers, 90 Fulton St. N.Y.” Both of these references can be confirmed by a review of Palmer’s books which confirms that R. Blakeslee Jr. & Co. was indeed in business at that address and search’s of other sources indicate that Holman and Gray were in Business at 90 Fulton Street in 1851. Palmer also provides another interesting reference to another business relationship. According to Palmer, between 1841 and 1855, Morse (Myles) and Blakeslee (R. Jr.) were manufacturing small 30 hour brass movement clocks in Plymouth Connecticut. These references place the age of the clock circa 1850-1851.

The feature that signals that this clock is not your typical small steeple is it’s a weight driven 30 hour clock and has a rare lyre shaped Davies Patent Lever movement. Things get a little more interesting since the weight arrangement is asymmetrical. By this I mean the drop of the weights is the same on both the time and strike sides however, the length of the time side cord is twice as long as the strike side. This is achieved by the use of a compound pulley configuration on the time side. Additionally, the time side weight is twice as heavy as the strike side. Also, the time side weight can only be installed one way, as there is a groove cut into one face so that it can clear time side mechanism.

I’ve found quite a bit of information on Davies Patent Lever Movements in the NAWCC Bulletins and I’m hoping member can share some pictures of other weight driven steeple clocks. Further, if any body can share more knowledge about other clocks by this maker I’d appreciate hearing from you.

Finally, this clock is 20 inches tall, 10 inches wide and 4 inches deep. Runs well and keeps good time.

Cheers, enjoy the photos and if you have any questions...

—Neil—


View attachment 620528 View attachment 620522 View attachment 620523 View attachment 620524 View attachment 620525 View attachment 620526 View attachment 620527 View attachment 620528 View attachment 620529 View attachment 620523 View attachment 620523 View attachment 620522 View attachment 620522
Hi,

Yes, I noted that clock when it was for sale through Miller and Miller.

I am aware of the article in the Bulletin as well. Read that article carefully. If I have done so and my memory is correct, there are some inconsistencies in the description then and now. For example, it is mentioned that holes were drilled in the bottom of the case for which the weights to pass and the clock was hung from the wall, all to permit a longer duration. They're not there now?

I have other observations/reservations which I will share, at the risk of being dismissed as the nasty meany.

The fresh looking blocks, the seat board showing evidence it was once pinned between rails, that it just appears to sit on the blocks (is that correct?), the way the dial is cut on the sides and so on.

I am willing to admit, in the face of compelling information, that I may be entirely wrong and FOS.

Unfortunately, some of the older Bulletins (I believe the article in question was published in 1959) report material that is spurious in nature. I have seen that more than a few times. Like any number of older antique publications and books, if they knew then what we knew now, some things would have never been published. As an example, I am
thinking of a very standard famous furniture reference that published things like secretaries with a Philadelphia top married to a Boston base and out right fakes. Looked right then, jarring now.

I welcome other opinions.

RM
 

Neil Levette

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Jun 15, 2017
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Thanks for your observations. One of the reasons that I posted this was to solicit feed back from the community as I too (along with some local collectors) have pontificated on the originality/provenance of the clock. Sadly, we haven’t been able to assemble to look at it together with the clock in the middle of the kitchen table (Covit restrictions).

In any event, permit me to respond to your observations as best I can.

In regards to the weight issue...the photos in the Bulletin article aren’t clear enough to discern the nature of the holes also, the article is ambiguous in that it states that the strike side would run 24 hours but the time side only 8. However, there are two holes in the base of the clock that would align correctly for two cords to pass through the bottom. Is this what the author might of been referring and speculating as to why the were there?

If there is a question about whether or not this is the same clock as in the article there is a “tell” and is visible in the Bulletin photo. A closer look at the dial and you will see a mark to the south west of the winding arbor hole. This isn’t lost paint. It’s actually a cut out. However none the of us have ever seen one in this position on any dial. So. I’ve attached a couple of photos so you can see it clearly and I’m open to theories as to why it’s there.

Moving on to the issue of the mounting of the movement to the case and those two “new looking” blocks. First the sole purpose of the blocks is to hold two little right angle pins that support the dial. That’s it. They are the same ones as are in the photos in the Bulletin. The movements seat board is actually attached to the clock using two screws through the back of the clock and the blocks provide no support. Go figure...so that begs the question why mount the face like this? Well when you see the clock, there is no room to attach the strips of wood on either side of the clock that the face would normally be attached to as the weights wouldn’t have room to pass by them.

It would be interesting to bring closure to the question of the originality/provenance of this clock. What we do know now is given the benefit of more recent knowledge Blakeslee and Morse had some sort of business arrangement in 1850. They were producing small 30 hr clocks using Davis Patent Lever Movements and I’ve seen examples of OG clocks by these gentlemen. If I was to offer a speculation building on the photo provided by Jim. The Larson Clock had a compound pulley arrangement and the two makers were operating in Plymouth at about same time and could have known what each other was doing. Possibly the Blakeslee clock started out with a compound pulley arrangement on the time side. This was then lost at some point. Gained the holes and then somebody corrected this by adding back the compound pulley. The clock in its current configuration is truly a 30 hour clock. Isn’t this fun? Hence why finding more pictures, references etc.is important.

I must say I’d be interested to hear if any feedback had been received by the NAWCC back in ‘59. Maybe one if the archivists is reading this forum...

Keep those cards and letters coming...all comments are appreciated and add to our collective horological knowledge.

Cheers,

—Neil—


14EF9C5C-EBBD-4B79-A957-0D9397113151.jpeg 2C404CC7-0D61-49E3-AF2C-52E72776188B.jpeg
 

Jeremy Woodoff

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This is fascinating! I couldn't understand what the "patent lever" was referring to, as I've heard of lever (wagon) springs and lever escapements. But this seems to refer strictly to the method of counting the hours. There must be a "lever" in that mechanism somewhere. Perhaps that mechanism allows for a more efficient train and a shorter weight drop.
 

rmarkowitz1_cee4a1

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Nov 26, 2009
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Thanks for your observations. One of the reasons that I posted this was to solicit feed back from the community as I too (along with some local collectors) have pontificated on the originality/provenance of the clock. Sadly, we haven’t been able to assemble to look at it together with the clock in the middle of the kitchen table (Covit restrictions).

In any event, permit me to respond to your observations as best I can.

In regards to the weight issue...the photos in the Bulletin article aren’t clear enough to discern the nature of the holes also, the article is ambiguous in that it states that the strike side would run 24 hours but the time side only 8. However, there are two holes in the base of the clock that would align correctly for two cords to pass through the bottom. Is this what the author might of been referring and speculating as to why the were there?

If there is a question about whether or not this is the same clock as in the article there is a “tell” and is visible in the Bulletin photo. A closer look at the dial and you will see a mark to the south west of the winding arbor hole. This isn’t lost paint. It’s actually a cut out. However none the of us have ever seen one in this position on any dial. So. I’ve attached a couple of photos so you can see it clearly and I’m open to theories as to why it’s there.

Moving on to the issue of the mounting of the movement to the case and those two “new looking” blocks. First the sole purpose of the blocks is to hold two little right angle pins that support the dial. That’s it. They are the same ones as are in the photos in the Bulletin. The movements seat board is actually attached to the clock using two screws through the back of the clock and the blocks provide no support. Go figure...so that begs the question why mount the face like this? Well when you see the clock, there is no room to attach the strips of wood on either side of the clock that the face would normally be attached to as the weights wouldn’t have room to pass by them.

It would be interesting to bring closure to the question of the originality/provenance of this clock. What we do know now is given the benefit of more recent knowledge Blakeslee and Morse had some sort of business arrangement in 1850. They were producing small 30 hr clocks using Davis Patent Lever Movements and I’ve seen examples of OG clocks by these gentlemen. If I was to offer a speculation building on the photo provided by Jim. The Larson Clock had a compound pulley arrangement and the two makers were operating in Plymouth at about same time and could have known what each other was doing. Possibly the Blakeslee clock started out with a compound pulley arrangement on the time side. This was then lost at some point. Gained the holes and then somebody corrected this by adding back the compound pulley. The clock in its current configuration is truly a 30 hour clock. Isn’t this fun? Hence why finding more pictures, references etc.is important.

I must say I’d be interested to hear if any feedback had been received by the NAWCC back in ‘59. Maybe one if the archivists is reading this forum...

Keep those cards and letters coming...all comments are appreciated and add to our collective horological knowledge.

Cheers,

—Neil—


View attachment 620593 View attachment 620592
No doubt the same clock in the article. In general, when making such comparisons, there are multiple things that can serve almost as a finger print, e.g., veneer grain patterns, chips, label defects, etc. In this case, the unexplained missing bit of the dial is one of those things. What I was referring to is how the sides of the dial are cut so close to the chapter ring. in discussions I have had elsewhere about the clock, it was suggested that this was done to allow the weights to pass. Maybe. But that doesn't mean it's original.

Thanks for clarifying how the movement mounts. The method of mounting by screws through the backboard into the seat board which to my eyes has evidence of having once been pinned to rails without other reinforcements like those newer blocks I submit would have been woefully inadequate for a weight driven clock and would have been rather, well, unique. The upper movement block looks too new and is held in place with Phillips head screws. Yes, could be a legit replacement.

Your pix are the first to show the pulleys in the eaves of the case. I've actually posted on the Forums a fusee steeple, along with references to other examples, where the cords go through pullies in the eaves that is completely original. Rather rare. They look nothing like the ones here. To me, the wood supporting the pulleys is of different configurations and ages based upon color. Just curious. The blocks appear to be attached with nails. Are they cut nails or wire nails?

Nit picking. Yes. This and if an object was created to deceive, often tripped up in the little details.

I think this is what I call a "fantasy piece". Years ago, it was created just as that. Over time, it changed hands, the original background was lost and it even got published. Well, manuals on how to identify a witch were also published years ago. Be careful of the tales associated with an object and of circumstantial evidence. Remember those cigar advertising clocks that are still plaguing the clock world and people are sadly paying big money for.

One other thing which is the least valid measure. The price. Not one that suggested others were convinced. But I admit, that can mean less than a hill of beans and you may have been the truly wise one who snatched the buy of the century. Again bringing up those cigar advertising clocks. People are paying big (stupid) prices for those. That does not, IMCO, validate the reality of those clocks.

Yep. I may be FOS and completely wrong.

Res ipsa loquitur. Put it all aside and look with fresh eyes. Be coldly objective. Sometimes we get caught in what may be the intense desire to prove something right...or wrong. That is especially important when trying to validate an usual or one of a kind piece. I believe this all has age. Unfortunately, a Conlon "Willard" banjo has age, too. There are so many objects where the age or the presence of aged parts obscures and confounds attempts at authentication. And more unfortunately, things like this make it into the older literature and that is used as proof of its validity. Recently, I had a similar discussion about a very unusual "wagon spring" shelf clock. Pictured in an older Bulletin. IMCO, anyone looking at that clock with fresh perspective would have dismissed it. That leads to the next point. To paraphrase a good friend, no mom wants to be told that her baby is homely. Man have I've been there. But when something unusual comes up, it's important that it passes the proverbial "acid test".

RM
 
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Neil Levette

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Jun 15, 2017
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This is fascinating! I couldn't understand what the "patent lever" was referring to, as I've heard of lever (wagon) springs and lever escapements. But this seems to refer strictly to the method of counting the hours. There must be a "lever" in that mechanism somewhere. Perhaps that mechanism allows for a more efficient
There is another discussion you may want to have a look at regarding Davies Patent Lever Movements. Try following this link https://mb.nawcc.org/threads/davies-patent-lever-ogee-blakeslee-rare.117914/post-902904
 

Neil Levette

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Jun 15, 2017
46
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No doubt the same clock in the article. In general, when making such comparisons, there are multiple things that can serve almost as a finger print, e.g., veneer grain patterns, chips, label defects, etc. In this case, the unexplained missing bit of the dial is one of those things. What I was referring to is how the sides of the dial are cut so close to the chapter ring. in discussions I have had elsewhere about the clock, it was suggested that this was done to allow the weights to pass. Maybe. But that doesn't mean it's original.

Thanks for clarifying how the movement mounts. The method of mounting by screws through the backboard into the seat board which to my eyes has evidence of having once been pinned to rails without other reinforcements like those newer blocks I submit would have been woefully inadequate for a weight driven clock and would have been rather, well, unique. The upper movement block looks too new and is held in place with Phillips head screws. Yes, could be a legit replacement.

Your pix are the first to show the pulleys in the eaves of the case. I've actually posted on the Forums a fusee steeple, along with references to other examples, where the cords go through pullies in the eaves that is completely original. Rather rare. They look nothing like the ones here. To me, the wood supporting the pulleys is of different configurations and ages based upon color. Just curious. The blocks appear to be attached with nails. Are they cut nails or wire nails?

Nit picking. Yes. This and if an object was created to deceive, often tripped up in the little details.

I think this is what I call a "fantasy piece". Years ago, it was created just as that. Over time, it changed hands, the original background was lost and it even got published. Well, manuals on how to identify a witch were also published years ago. Be careful of the tales associated with an object and of circumstantial evidence. Remember those cigar advertising clocks that are still plaguing the clock world and people are sadly paying big money for.

One other thing which is the least valid measure. The price. Not one that suggested others were convinced. But I admit, that can mean less than a hill of beans and you may have been the truly wise one who snatched the buy of the century. Again bringing up those cigar advertising clocks. People are paying big (stupid) prices for those. That does not, IMCO, validate the reality of those clocks.

Yep. I may be FOS and completely wrong.

Res ipsa loquitur. Put it all aside and look with fresh eyes. Be coldly objective. Sometimes we get caught in what may be the intense desire to prove something right...or wrong. That is especially important when trying to validate an usual or one of a kind piece. I believe this all has age. Unfortunately, a Conlon "Willard" banjo has age, too. There are so many objects where the age or the presence of aged parts obscures and confounds attempts at authentication. And more unfortunately, things like this make it into the older literature and that is used as proof of its validity. Recently, I had a similar discussion about a very unusual "wagon spring" shelf clock. Pictured in an older Bulletin. IMCO, anyone looking at that clock with fresh perspective would have dismissed it. That leads to the next point. To paraphrase a good friend, no mom wants to be told that her baby is homely. Man have I've been there. But when something unusual comes up, it's important that it passes the proverbial "acid test".

RM
Thanks for all your observations and cautions in regards to skulduggery intentional or unintentional in the world. My favorite source for this is the British TV series Lovejoy. All the episodes are up on the Amazon Prime streaming series here in Canada. I recommend it for some binge worthy entertainment for antique nerds.
D7E6DEC8-4173-4A0F-8321-2404CA1F7B8E.jpeg
As to your question requiring the pulley configuration. I’ve added a couple of better photos for you to look at.

Also, you are correct that the top block on the movement is a replacement.

But we’re still left with the question. Are we looking at a: series of ‘restorations and ‘repairs’; ‘fantasy’; or deliberate attempt to ‘deceive’?



26796964-C316-49F0-899D-233E7FE34AD3.jpeg
 

Ralph

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This is fascinating! I couldn't understand what the "patent lever" was referring to, as I've heard of lever (wagon) springs and lever escapements. But this seems to refer strictly to the method of counting the hours. There must be a "lever" in that mechanism somewhere. Perhaps that mechanism allows for a more efficient train and a shorter weight drop.
I have an OG , by Morse, that uses the Davies patent movement. Here are some images of the movement. You have to study it a bit to understand it's operation.

Davies0003.jpg Davies0005.jpg Davies0007.jpg
 

Neil Levette

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Jun 15, 2017
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Thanks for the photos and the “exploded” view. It’s easier to see one of the significant differences between your strike side winding barrel and my clock (a.k.a. The clock in the 1959 Bulletin). I hope I haven’t seriously validate copy right but here is a small extract that describes the size of the strike barrel and the variance between the strike and time barrels.

“Now as to the weight "angle". Obviously, in as small a clock as this, the weight travel cannot be great, but with only 3/16" arbor or barrel, as is shown on the strlke side, the travel is sufficient to give a total of 156 blows on the gong sufficient for a 24 hour run.”

Would you be kind enough to verify that the diameter of your movement is the same as the time side and what the diameter of the strike side is?

Thanks!

—Neil—
 

rmarkowitz1_cee4a1

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Thanks for all your observations and cautions in regards to skulduggery intentional or unintentional in the world. My favorite source for this is the British TV series Lovejoy. All the episodes are up on the Amazon Prime streaming series here in Canada. I recommend it for some binge worthy entertainment for antique nerds.
View attachment 620704
As to your question requiring the pulley configuration. I’ve added a couple of better photos for you to look at.

Also, you are correct that the top block on the movement is a replacement.

But we’re still left with the question. Are we looking at a: series of ‘restorations and ‘repairs’; ‘fantasy’; or deliberate attempt to ‘deceive’?



View attachment 620705
Thanks for pix of the pullies and the blocks.

I admit it may be difficult draw absolute conclusions from just pictures.

My concerns are that the blocks look almost like bits of old scrap wood of different sizes. Now, I admit it is possible as this was one of a very few (only one?) made, available materials may have been pressed into service.

Also looks like the blocks are secured with wire nails. If so, not period appropriate. Would have been cut nails.

By the way, here are pix of my fusee steeple with the weird configuration and use of pullies in the eaves.

smith and goodrich overhead pullies.JPG smith and goodrich overhead pullies 2.JPG

Wish I had taken better pix of the pullies. Note how they appear and are mounted. I have a more detailed discussion of this clock on the Forums.

In fact, the use of a fusee to basically convert a weight driven movement to a spring driven one makes MUCH more sense than trying to place a weight driven movement into a small case. The former is what a number of makers in fact did! Furthermore, there was a strong trend away from weight driven to smaller spring driven clocks. Not clear why a maker would take the latter route? Of course, makers did things that in the context of the time didn't make sense. We've discussed a 4 day fusee steeple (by Jerome who made his share of 8 day fusee ones, basically using a weight driven movement), 8 day weight driven ogee timepieces...and the list goes on.

However, after a while, there is a preponderance of evidence.

RM
 

Neil Levette

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Very nice...thanks for sharing. Nice clock. I’m really drawn to these clocks. While I have my share of large showy clocks. My favorite ones are the quirky ones. The ones that make you tilt your head an say to yourself “why?” or the ones that have a story to discover.

I’d like to see more of these clocks as they make me smile.

I noticed that there’s a forum out there for posting clocks by maker. I like to see more of our clocks shared out there. As a resource for future collectors and researchers. Well there’s my random thoughts for the moment.

Thanks for your comments and sharing your clock.

Cheers,

—Neil—
 

Jim DuBois

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While this is not a weight-driven steeple clock it does speak to the lengths some clockmaker might go to just to get a current inventory of parts made into what they might consider more saleable. We have looked at this setup previously here on the MB, but it is an 8-day movement that was fit into a 30-hr sized case that would have originally used weights. There was not enough room to use 8-day weights, so in go the fusees. The location of the pulleys is certainly innovative too.

Regards the weight-driven steeple clock one has to wonder why they would want to make a 30-hr version of a clock while using a more expensive 8-day movement in it? By the time Blakeslee was in business, 8-day springs were available and not all that expensive. But never say never and never say always when it comes to clocks, and maybe a lot of other things too?
20201004_163204.jpg
 

rmarkowitz1_cee4a1

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I made an error in my last posting. The 4 day steeple is not a fusee clock. It is spring driven.
I seem to be making a # of dumb errors like that.

RM
 

Jim DuBois

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Well, it must be something in the
I made an error in my last posting. The 4 day steeple is not a fusee clock. It is spring driven.
I seem to be making a # of dumb errors like that.

RM
Well, it must be something in the water. I referred to the 30-hr steeple clock movement as being 8-day in my previous post. Or at least that is sort of how it reads. I should have said why would they use a 30-hr movement and weight driven besides when 8-day spring movements were readily available by then and would fit the steeple case?
 

Grant Perry

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Great clock Neil Levette
As you know, this clock came from the Dick Withington collection. Dick was actually a past president of our Chapter 111 in Ottawa from 1979 to 1981. Dick died suddenly in 1992 leaving behind a vast collection of very nice clocks. A substantial portion of them were sold off in the early 90's, after his death, but the rest remained untouched in his home for the past 28 years until consigned to auction this year where you purchased the clock. I assisted another chapter member last year to look at the collection and provide advice on disposing the clocks, seeing all those untouched clocks sitting there was quite an amazing site.
I wonder if your clock was in this picture :)
Enjoy the clock!
Grant
 
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rmarkowitz1_cee4a1

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Great clock Neil Levette
As you know, this clock came from the Dick Withington collection. Dick was actually a past president of our Chapter 111 in Ottawa from 1979 to 1981. Dick died suddenly in 1992 leaving behind a vast collection of very nice clocks. A substantial portion of them were sold off in the early 90's, after his death, but the rest remained untouched in his home for the past 28 years until consigned to auction this year where you purchased the clock. I assisted another chapter member last year to look at the collection and provide advice on disposing the clocks, seeing all those untouched clocks sitting there was quite an amazing site.
I wonder if you clock was in this picture :)
Enjoy the clock!
Grant
I am curious.

Did the clocks in the Miller and Miller represent the complete collection or what was left after a previous dispersal?

Many of those offered at that auction had condition and other issues which makes me wonder if they were what was left.

RM
 

Steven Thornberry

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I am curious.

Did the clocks in the Miller and Miller represent the complete collection or what was left after a previous dispersal?

Many of those offered at that auction had condition and other issues which makes me wonder if they were what was left.

RM
Well, Grant did say the following.

A substantial portion of them were sold off in the early 90's, after his death,
 

Jim DuBois

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In my opinion, many of the clocks in this last auction had a problem or two. Wrong or no tablets, some with no dial at all, some with missing veneer patches, missing hands, etc. That said, there were some very nice clocks in the auction and several were quite rare versions. There were more 8-day woodworks clocks for sale than I have seen in one place in a long time, if ever. Most needed this or that. But still, there were quite a few I would be proud to own!
 

rmarkowitz1_cee4a1

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In my opinion, many of the clocks in this last auction had a problem or two. Wrong or no tablets, some with no dial at all, some with missing veneer patches, missing hands, etc. That said, there were some very nice clocks in the auction and several were quite rare versions. There were more 8-day woodworks clocks for sale than I have seen in one place in a long time, if ever. Most needed this or that. But still, there were quite a few I would be proud to own!
Well, yes a few nice things.

I guess I wouldn’t be so generous otherwise.

RM
 

Grant Perry

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I would agree. There were a few on display in the house that were in very good condition, but the ones in storage appeared to be project clocks for the most part. What was nice about the collection, is that were quite a number of early clocks as Jim observed.
 

rmarkowitz1_cee4a1

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I would agree. There were a few on display in the house that were in very good condition, but the ones in storage appeared to be project clocks for the most part. What was nice about the collection, is that were quite a number of early clocks as Jim observed.
.

Agreed.

RM
 

Neil Levette

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Thanks for the Ottawa 111 news letter. It brings back many memories of my time with the chapter. Yes I was a member back then and remember Dick, Jane V. and every body fondly. Yes I know my NAWCC information isn’t correct. I’ve been a member for far longer than I care to remember. Back in this days when I was a member of 111. I had no spare readies that I could use to buy anything with and would just come to the meetings and look enviously at everybody else’s clocks. I’m sorry I missed the passing of Dick but I’d left for Calgary. But I’m back in Ottawa now and the Blakeslee is sitting on the kitchen table with some of my pile (much to my wife’s annoyance as we can no longer eat there). My pile is not nearly as spectacular a pile as Dick’s.

I believe we met a couple of years ago at the Carp Fair where I bought Maynard Dokkens book “Westclox Spring Wound Clocks”. Which by the way I used just the other day to identify a Pequegnat branded alarm clock which was made by Westclox Canada in Peterborough. I’d never hear of one. But I digress...when COVID is better under control we’ll have to reconnect.
Which reminds me...I’ll have to take a run up to Deep River to the Canadian Clock Museum and see if Allan’s still got the Canada Clock Co. I sold him.

Cheers, and thanks to all for all you contributions to this chain and helping me fill in some more blanks of the Blackeslee’s history.

—Neil—
 
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Grant Perry

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Hi Neil,
Looking forward to reconnecting at the meeting once things clear up. It is great to hear that the clock made its way back to Ottawa.
Grant
 

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