The automaton HUGO

Discussion in 'Member News and Views' started by dweiss17, Sep 28, 2012.

  1. This site uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Learn More.
  1. dweiss17

    dweiss17 Registered User
    Old Timer NAWCC Member

    Aug 1, 2006
    2,461
    40
    48
    Retired from Graphic Arts
    Philadelphia, PA
    Country Flag:
    The automaton HUGO

    As members of the National Association of Watch and Clock Collectors, we never know where our surnames will lead us. Yesterday, I received an email from Mike Schmidt, President of our NAWCC Chapter 190 of Ventura, CA. Mike wanted to know if the email may have been misdirected to Ron Weiss, instead of to me.

    Subject: Fw: Andrew Baron and My Time With Hugo and the Automaton

    Sending an email to Mike, relating the email not meant for me; however, it took me back to when I first joined the NAWCC in 1964. The Franklin Institute was the first repository of our collection of Horological material. I know Earl T. Strickler became Editor 1953-1974. Mr. Strickler had his own Horological Museum in Columbia, PA.

    I do not remember the history at this moment, of the Horologic material in its removal from the Franklin Institute and delivery to the Strickler home. That eventually became the National Association of Watch and Collectors Museum. I also recall we acquired our own building later on, and it evolved into our magnificent NAWCC Museum in Columbia, PA. We as NAWCC members and tourists, visit the Museum today to the tune of approximately 12,000 visitors yearly.

    I understand we have the largest Horological Library in the world and our Horological collection of clocks and watches and related implements has grown to over 12,000 pieces. We are the leading Horological Museum in all America. In prior years our NAWCC membership totaled between 38,000 to 40,000 dues paying members. However, with the event of natural evolution across the years in our world of electronics, we, today, have roughly 17,000 NAWCC members. Practically any electronic gadget you can hold in your hand will give you the time of day. Our computers, our DVRs, our TVs and a host of other desk implements will also deliver time practically equal to our best atomic clocks.

    We no longer have any watch or clock factories in the USA, should you buy a clock today, certainly, it will be an import. As far as I know, we have only one Wristwatch Company making high-grade, expensive wristwatches in the Lancaster, PA area called RGM.

    In the two links below in the email sent me by Mike Schmidt, they will take you to one of the best [automaton] stories ever involving clocks, plus its involvement with the Franklin Institute in Philadelphia...for even further information to the movie “Hugo.” Please type into GOOGLE...the movie “Hugo.”

    Below: A copy of the email sent me by Mike Schmidt, President of NAWCC Chapter 190 of Ventura, CA. Should you care to read our wonderful monthly Newsletter, GOOGLE and type in CHRONO TIMES. You can also request it emailed to you via Internet, monthly. It is the best of all Horological Newsletters on the Internet, filled with stories, photos and descriptive material.

    ----- Original Message -----
    From: Michael Schmidt

    To: Daniel Weiss

    Sent: Thursday, September 27, 2012 12:43 PM

    Subject: Fw: Andrew Baron: My Time With Hugo and the Automaton

    Hi Dan

    This inquiry may have been directed to you instead of Ron Weiss? Please let me know. Mike

    Well I was very excited to receive a phone call from Andy Baron. He was looking for a contact to Ron Weiss who was associated with our chapter Field Suitcase Workshops. Ron had asked some questions about the Maillardets automation that is now at The Franklin Institute Museum in Philadelphia. Charlie Penniman at the Franklin give him my name as a contact. He related the story of his work with the award winning book " The Invention of Hugo Cabret" and eventually the movie "HUGO". This was followed with contact from the Franklin for him to restore the automaton. Its an amazing story that is well documented.

    Andy has given a program on the automaton to the NAWCC in Minneapolis. The contact there is Wes Cutter. I will follow up and see what it will take to have a program brought here.


    This is exciting stuff, especially if you have seen the movie "HUGO". Our Chapter and newsletter reaches out to so many interesting people and places.

    Mike

    Below are two links with detailed information.

    http://www.popyrus.com/hugo/index.html

    http://www.fi.edu/learn/sci-tech/automaton/automaton.php?cts=instrumentation
     
  2. dweiss17

    dweiss17 Registered User
    Old Timer NAWCC Member

    Aug 1, 2006
    2,461
    40
    48
    Retired from Graphic Arts
    Philadelphia, PA
    Country Flag:
    The automaton HUGO

    In the mail today, I received the DVD movie HUGO. It cost $8.59 shipped from Amazon. Winner of five Academy Awards, however, not the best picture award. When I popped it into my computer to play...I sat completely enthralled for a little over two hours watching this fantastic dream called HUGO. The artistic scenic coloring, the cinematic effects, the actors, the scenes, and at the end...the longest credit list of men and women whose combined efforts resulted in a dream come true. It also featured some scenes from the days of silent movies, runaway trains, and even the ticking of a watch that was almost too large to hold in the hand of the boy living in a train terminal by his wits.

    With undue hesitation, I must say, “For anyone who never had the opportunity to see this wonderful cinematic masterpiece...please do yourself a favor...buy the DVD featuring HUGO.”

    Invite family and friends to sit down with you to watch it on your TV screen if you have a DVD player connected to your TV. On the other hand, screen it on your computer or tablet.

    The clocks and clockwork mechanisms are eye candy for any person interested in horology. Again, the cinematic effects and scenes depicted in this film laid out in France and directed by Martin Scorsese...left a little to the imagination. However, in total...you will not soon forget this movie HUGO. Such is its effect upon the human brain. It will be viewed by me more than once or twice.
     
  3. doug sinclair

    doug sinclair Registered User

    Aug 27, 2000
    14,364
    50
    48
    Calgary, Alberta
    Country Flag:
    Region Flag:
    A neighbour who didn't know I was into tower clocks, insisted that she lend us her DVD of Hugo so we could watch it. I tried gracefully to decline the opportunity, as I had heard a lot about the visual effects created for the film. I generally don't like such films a lot as I find it difficult to suspend my disbelief while watching. Did anyone see The Brothers Grimm? I walked out in the middle of that movie! Anyway, we watched Hugo, and the DVD was returned today. Sometimes, seeing a movie that is spectacular on the big screen, comes off as a disappointment on the small screen. I won't be buying the DVD!
     

Share This Page