Request for information about 18th and 19th century clockmakers

PeteKNY1991

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Hi everyone, I'm just joining your organization, as I'm about to start a small collection of English/Scottish tall-case clocks!
for starters, I'd like to request your assistance/expertise about tall-case clocks and their makers. At this time, I'm trying to acquire tall-case clocks made by the following clockmakers:

1)Henry Clayton of Blackburn, Lancashire

2)J.C. Elliot (and Sons)of Blyth, Selkirk and Leeds

3)Thomas & Hoadley of Plymouth, MA.

I only have a very limited amount of photos for the clocks made by the above-listed clockmakers, I'm sorry.

Any information/background on these clockmakers you can provide will be greatly appreciated!

Peter

J.C. ELLIOT tall case clock-photo #1.jpg J.C. ELLIOTT tall case clock dial-photo #2.jpg THOMAS & HOADLEY TALL-CASE CLOCK-19th Century-August 2022.jpg
 

zedric

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PeteKNY1991

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Hi, thank you for your reply. Yes, it is a quite specific list. I have already found clocks by these clockmakers - what I mean I'm bidding for clocks by these makers on several antique websites. I came up with these names as the clocks I'm bidding on were made by them. I just want to see what information is available on them, and if the clocks by those makers are at least somewhat valuable, etc. Thank you for your time.
 

zedric

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Loomes lists

2/ Elliot J & sons Leeds as 1871, rater late for a longcase and would be a retailer. An Elliott JOhn Catcheside b1804 d 1887 working in Leeds 1847 on
 

jmclaugh

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No sign of 1 in my sources. 2 in addition to what zedric posted "born Smallburn (Northumberland) working Blythe (Northumberland) c 1830-41 then Selkirk, Scotland 1845 then Leeds 1847. 3 are listed in Greystone US 1810-13, successors to Terry Thomas & Hoadley, business carried on by Hoadley alone after 1813 till 1849.
 

JTD

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if the clocks by those makers are at least somewhat valuable, etc.
I am not sure what value range your 'somewhat valuable' covers. I am not well informed what such clocks would fetch in US, but in UK they are very hard to sell, unless there is something exceptional/unusual about them. Run-of-the mill long case clocks at auction often go for very little or even remain unsold.

These three, from what can be seen from your photos, do not look in any way unusual. In the end, they are worth whatever someone is willing to pay.

JTD
 
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Jim DuBois

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There are a lot of details published regarding the work of Thomas and Hoadly. As to desirability, some of it depends on if the clock is 30 hr or 8-day. Thomas and Hoadly made both. It will be a woodworks clock in either case. The style of the case is a bit unusual for their works, but people who bought their works could have a case made to their liking. The feet of the case, and much of the base, are suspect in my thinking. The carved decoration in the trunk door is also suspect. I would be very careful in bidding for that clock unless it is inspected by a very knowledgeable party firsthand, one that you trust. In the best of circumstances, it appears to have been "improved" to something it was not originally.

THOMAS & HOADLEY TALL-CASE CLOCK-19th Century-August 2022 (2).jpg
 
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PeteKNY1991

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Thank you Jim and JTD for your comments/information, every bit of information helps, much appreciated!

Pete
 

Jim DuBois

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While there are many tall clocks going through auctions these days, the best are the only ones commanding reasonable to serious money. One of the busy dealers is buying really good clocks at auctions, clocks he sold many years ago for really good money. Today he is buying many of them for 1/4 or less of what they sold for back when.

And the equivalents of old Chevrolets or rusty Fords are often being passed at auction or left out for salvage collection at yard and estate sales. One friend/local dealer bought 14 English 8 day lower end circa 1830-1850 clocks for $50 each recently Two weeks ago a very decent wood works was given away free at an estate sale. Another friend last month bought a really nice/complete 8-day brass works American tall clock for $100. So proceed with a great deal of caution. A fair number of decent tall clocks can be had in the $500-$1000 range, and some really nice examples for under $2500.
 

PeteKNY1991

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Hi Jim:

Again, thank you so much for all this good info, much appreciated! By the way, where does one buy tall-case clocks @ $50 each, LOL? How and where was/is this possible? I'd love to know!
Yes, definitely, proceeding with a great deal of caution is the key here! That being said, I don't intend on spending a fortune on these clocks, any clocks, for that matter!
 

Jim DuBois

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They were leftovers from this auction. You will need to sign into Live Auctioneers to see the prices realized.https://www.liveauctioneers.com/catalog/108967_the-tom-spittler-collection/?page=2
 

PeteKNY1991

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Hey Jim:

Thanks for sending over the link for the www.liveauctioneers.com website, I took a look at it, those clocks sold back in Oct. 2017. As I've mentioned, I'm quite new=just starting in the field of tall-case clock collecting field, so I have a long way to go in order to learn, etc. I'm intending on acquiring a few clocks ( perhaps 10 at most), as I don't have unlimited space to store/display them, etc.
 

JTD

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Hey Jim:

Thanks for sending over the link for the www.liveauctioneers.com website, I took a look at it, those clocks sold back in Oct. 2017. As I've mentioned, I'm quite new=just starting in the field of tall-case clock collecting field, so I have a long way to go in order to learn, etc. I'm intending on acquiring a few clocks ( perhaps 10 at most), as I don't have unlimited space to store/display them, etc.
Even though that sale was was in 2017, prices haven't changed a lot since then when it comes to every-day long case clocks.

There are various ways of starting your collection. You could just buy clocks you like the look of - you might pay more than you should - or you could read (a lot) about long case clocks, in which case you would be starting your collection on a firmer footing.

You can learn how to recognise approximate age, places of origin, one-day or eight-day etc. by learning about the style of the case, the dial, the hands, the spandrels etc. etc.. Much can be learned by reading books on the subject, then at least you will have some knowledge to guide you in your collecting.

JTD
 

Jim DuBois

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I referenced the Spitler auction as I had mentioned the 14 tall clocks that a friend bought the 2nd day of the auction for $50 each. They were less than fine, but they were all 8-day English and Scottish. This auction is worth our thoughts today as it was well attended by a few hundred clock and watch collectors. It was well advertised, and Tom Spittler was well known both here and in the UK. There were a few decent clocks sold that were not in the auction, and the 2nd-day dregs were not shown on LiveAuctioneers as they were not sold online. The prices paid were higher than expected on many clocks, but there were few that I would consider standouts anyhow. Tom had a warehouse or two of what I would call badly neglected clocks. I visited there in 2016 and was frankly appalled by what I saw. But this auction's results are still educational IMO.
 
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PatH

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Peter,
I apologize for being off topic from your original question, but as JTD, Jim, and others have said, I think it's important to learn about a topic before making an investment. As you mentioned there's only so much room in your house for clocks, so you likely want to choose them wisely. (As you might suspect, I'm speaking from experience here. :))

In general, the best buyers are the most knowledgeable ones. Some of the most beneficial ways to get started are to read, read, read, look at many clocks, ask questions, and talk to people who are knowledgeable in the field. There are helpful threads here on the forums, and the number of other online resources grows daily. Many auction house catalogs are online, either on their site or through liveauctioneers, or one of the other online auction platforms. These are great resources to learn about clocks/watches and makers, as well as what's available and how much you might expect to pay. It also introduces you to makers, styles, etc. that you might not otherwise be aware of, and some descriptions point out features or flaws that could be helpful to know as you continue to grow your collection. As many have found, it's amazing how much a "free" clock can end up costing you - sometimes it's well worth the cost because the clock is more valuable than the cost of repairs, but other times, it can be truly disappointing. All of us want you to have a wonderful collecting experience - to enjoy timepieces and appreciate their makers and place in history as much as we do.

If you're not already a member, one of the best investments you can make is to join the NAWCC - at least it has been for us. There is a special first-time membership available that includes digital Bulletins. It is $52 for the first year, and you'll likely save that much by making wise buying decisions. It's unbelievable how much information is available through the online Bulletin articles and supplements, not to mention the other benefits of membership.
link to join - NAWCC Membership Application
list of benefits - Join - National Association of Watch & Clock Collectors, Inc.. One of the often overlooked benefits is free or reduced admission to a wide variety of ASTC (Association of Science and Technology) museums and science centers. More information is included at the link above.

In addition to welcoming you to the forum now, I hope we're also welcoming you soon to the NAWCC, and to the wonderful world of clock lovers/owners/caretakers.
Pat
 

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