When I first started collecting I bought every kitchen clock in sight. With or without the alarm. Now, I only buy kitchen clocks with the alarms in them. I suspect the alarm would have been for cooking. However, an older gentleman told me when he was a child they kept their kitchen clock in the sitting room on top of the mantel. His dad would set the alarm before they went to bed. It would wake them in time to start the day's work on the farm. He said the alarm needed to be loud enough to wake everyone in the house from a dead sleep. I suppose it could have been used for either.