Unknown Column & Splat

Discussion in 'Wood Movement Clocks' started by Curtis Jackson, Sep 5, 2010.

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  1. Curtis Jackson

    Curtis Jackson Registered User
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    Mid-South Regional purchase number 2.

    Need help figuring out who made it. The label is very much gone, but there are some unoxidized areas on the backboard where text used to be. I can't make much out of it but it might be enough to identify a maker's label if anyone recognises it!

    Fixer upper, but no big deal. No pendulum, weights, hands or glass. Couldn't pass it up for the price.
     

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  2. Jeremy Woodoff

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    The brass keyhole escutcheon may provide a clue to the maker. Nice clock. It looks as though most of the stenciling is there.
     
  3. Curtis Jackson

    Curtis Jackson Registered User
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    It's oval with beading around the edge. Frankly I was hesitant to think that it was original, but I'm no expert!
     

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  4. rmarkowitz1_cee4a1

    rmarkowitz1_cee4a1 Registered User
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    Agree. Another nice goodie.

    I'm a major fan of period stencilling on furniture, clocks, picture frames, boxes, etc. Looks like it's in pretty good shape on this clock. Also, looks like reasonable veneer and old finish. My prejudice is to do the minimum too it.

    Would look great with an old piece of glass in front of the dial, an old piece of mirror below. To me, the ripples in the glass and the distortion of reflections by old mirror are part of the visual "experience" of an antique clock.

    There's just enough tracs of the label to drive me crazy trying to figure it out.

    I believe I can make out:

    "Brass Bushed"

    Then the word below:

    "Patent"

    As for the rest :confused::confused::confused::confused:

    This, however, may provide a clue to maker, as some were know to brass bush their wood movements (though didn't see any in the movement that came with the clock). If the movement appears original, by identifying movement type, may be able to narrow list of makers, too.

    Also, playing with the properties of the photo, ie contrast, etc, may help to bring out more label details.

    Enjoy the clock.

    RM

    PS: the pic you posted of the escutcheon is kinda small and wouldn't enlarge for me. However, it looks fine. Leave it there.
     
  5. Curtis Jackson

    Curtis Jackson Registered User
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    Will try to get a better pic of the escutcheon. Had to put it up last night when cleaning up.

    The stenciling is there... most visible on the right column, almost as if someone did a great job cleaning it up and then stopped there. The left column still shows noise in the finish that detracts from the stencilling. Splat is the same way. I have a nagging feeling that I may have to go after the finish with alcohol to clean it up. Thoughts?

    The grain on the veneer on the door is beautiful but barely visible behind muddy finish. Same thing as above.

    Where should I go to try to narrow down the movement type? Bulletins?
     
  6. Steven Thornberry

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    #6 Steven Thornberry, Sep 6, 2010
    Last edited: Sep 6, 2010
    I thought the word below "Brass Bushed" was "Clocks." But, I'm guessing a bit since the picture isn't too clear. I know C&N Jerome used such language, but I don't offhand know if this style clock and this movement are ones found in their inventory. As RM said, type of movement may be critical and many look very much alike. Often, it comes down to style of EW bridge and shape of countwheel.
     
  7. rmarkowitz1_cee4a1

    rmarkowitz1_cee4a1 Registered User
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    You're askin' the wrong guy. I tend to leave stuff as found, to a fault in the minds of many. However, whatever you do, be very careful with cleaning the stencilling. The decoration is microns thick and easily removed. Some have recommended to me Cotton Cleanser or Goop. I have no personal experience with either for this particular application.

    I'm not surprised the grunge/wear is more on the viewer's left column than right. When you open the door, your hand naturally holds onto the viewer's left column to stabilize the case as the door is opened and the clock wound. An example of good honest wear through routine use. Collectors love to see that stuff on furniture, etc. What lesser fakers often forget.

    See:

    http://nawcc.org/index.php/nawcc-bulletin/past-issues-/453?task=view

    This is October, 1980, # 208, part I. This the guide to wood movement identification by Dr. Taylor. The Bible. Subsequently, some revisions/additions made, but this will get you started.

    Hopefully, some of the MB participants will take a look. There are those who have it at their finger tips. After all these years, I'm still a real plodder when it comes to this movement ID stuff. I always have to look it up.

    Have fun.

    RM
     
  8. Steven Thornberry

    Steven Thornberry User Administrator
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    My apologies for a tiresome error. The word "Clocks" is below "Patent," but for some reason I was fixated on the "Brass Bushed" phrase. RM, of course, has read it correctly.
     
  9. rmarkowitz1_cee4a1

    rmarkowitz1_cee4a1 Registered User
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    Even though I have a ton of job related things to do which can be accomplished from home by computer, rather than doing the logical, responsible, adult and appropriate thing, I went creeping around some of the local antique shops today.

    Saw a really tired wood works. The stencilling was gone from the splat and columns, the dial was repainted by an attendee of a local daycare. However, what struck me was the shape of the splat (yours is a nice less often seen, though not rare, variant), overall case configuration, pressed brass escutcheon, etc were just like your clock. The label in that one was Seth Thomas.

    By the way, the shop manager who was sellling the clock, insisted that it was all original, untouched, and I could steal it for $650! I declined the clock at that price. I also asked him to sell me a case of what he must have been drinking that day. Actually, we've known each other for years and had a good laugh as he expects such comments from me.

    Hope this info helps.

    RM
     
  10. Jerome collector

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    Going by Snowden Taylor's revised table, the movement is a type 6.111 made by H. Welton & Co. The movement was used by a whole host of clockmakers (Austin S. Burwell, Daniel M. Tuthill, Henry C. Smith, E. & G.W. Bartholomew, Jason R. Rawson, Kilbourn & Darrow, Rollin Atkins, Terry & Andrews, L. & F. Andrews, Goodwin & Humphrey, George Brown, Goodwin & Frisbie, Hiram Hunt, and Virgil C. Goodwin).

    According to "Eli Terry and the Connecticut Shelf Clock" (2nd edition) by Kenneth Roberts and Snowden Taylor, H. Welton & Co. was in business in Terrysville, CT from 1840-42. The partners were Heman & Hiram Welton (brothers).
     
  11. rmarkowitz1_cee4a1

    rmarkowitz1_cee4a1 Registered User
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    Worth a try, but I guess it really didn't help to narrow things down.

    RM
     
  12. Jerome collector

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    RM,

    You're giving up too early! The hunt is just beginning. Some of the makers on the list are pretty obscure, but others are more common. It may be possible to connect the remains of the label in the clock in question to one of these makers. I was once able to connect a clock to Austin Chittenden based on a few square inches of label, none of which contained any hints as to the maker's name. This is where the fun starts!

    Mike
     
  13. rmarkowitz1_cee4a1

    rmarkowitz1_cee4a1 Registered User
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    You're right! It would be especially fun if it were to be one of the more obscure makers.

    Would examining the back board under UV light be helpful in revealing more details?

    RM
     
  14. Peter A. Nunes

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    Well, I saved the picture of the case, lightened it, increased the contrast, etc., as for all pictures I post, and it sure looks like a Seth Thomas style splat. The boldness of the letters of which there are traces on the backboard are also reminiscent of Seth Thomas column & splat labels. It is indeed a type 6.111 movement, never used by Seth Thomas to my knowledge... as far as I know, the company made all its own movements. They are easy to spot, as they feature a rounded end on the brass escape wheel bridge. I don't recall them producing brass bushed movements, but since that was a ploy used by many manufacturers towards the end of the wood movement era, it makes some sense. I also saved and cleaned up the picture of the dial. The dial seems early, as the minute markers are inside the numerals, as they would be on a pillar & scroll clock. From the picture, it doesn't look as if the relationship of the winding arbors and hand arbors is exactly correct, though it is hard to tell.
     

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  15. Curtis Jackson

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    Can't we be fairly certain that this is a marriage - if the label asserted brass bushings and the present movement does not have brass bushings..?

    This is most certainly not a Seth Thomas movement from what I've read up on the Snowden Taylor tables.

    I played with the wider image of the label. Not much else shows up except for an unclear area about an inch or two below the word we think is "clocks." See attached image.

    Also notice that the border is present toward the bottom right corner.
     

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  16. Curtis Jackson

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    There are photos of a Seth Thomas ww label on this page. It shows the font?script? of the word "Patent" as very similar to what is on my clock's remnants.
     
  17. rmarkowitz1_cee4a1

    rmarkowitz1_cee4a1 Registered User
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    #17 rmarkowitz1_cee4a1, Sep 8, 2010
    Last edited: Sep 8, 2010
    You speak the truth, Ke-mo sah-bee! That type of dial with inner time track also found on "transition" clocks and some of the earlier wood works, eg, some of the "pillar and splat" clocks with groaner orTerry type movements (I'm staring at them right now as I type).

    Interesting wrinkle, though. Look at the ST wood works clock in the link below...dial also has inner time track.

    RM
     
  18. Jerome collector

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    You might start with trying to identify the label printer from the border pattern preserved on the right side. The pattern is quite different from examples by P. Canfield in Jerome clocks in my collection (see http://home.earthlink.net/~mmbailey39/index.html).

    As far as whether the clock is a marriage or not, check a couple of things. First, is there only one set of holes in the vertical rails for the pins that hold the movement in place? And do those holes line up with a single set of holes in the movement? If so, unlikely that the movement has been replaced. The second thing has to do with presence or absence of bushings. Have you disassembled the movement to see if there are bushings, or are you basing everything on what can be seen from the visible surface of the plates? Whereas Jerome bushed throughout, including the winding arbors, I'm not sure whether that was always the case with other makers. With Jerome's movements, only the winding arbor bushings were visible from the front of the movement. If a maker bushed everything but the winding arbors, you wouldn't necessarily know if without taking the movement apart.
    -> posts merged by system <-
    I've had success with UV light. It's worth a try.
     
  19. Curtis Jackson

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    Will see if I can find the printer.

    I just took for granted that any brass bushings would go all the way through the plate and therefore be visible on the outside. Mistake! Will disassemble and report back.

    I think I have a small fluorescent black light (sigh.. college days). Would this do the job in a dark room?
     
  20. Curtis Jackson

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    Fairly compelling matches found among Seth Thomas clocks on ACPG.com:

    Example 1
    - Very similar splat stencil
    - Nearly complete match to column stencil
    - "Patent" typeface matches

    Example 2
    - Matching door key escutcheon
    - Match "Brass Bushed", "Patent" typefaces, possibly same typeface on "Clocks"

    * Matching veneer grain direction on doors of both.
    * Dials show matching numerals in relative size and placement.
     
  21. rmarkowitz1_cee4a1

    rmarkowitz1_cee4a1 Registered User
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    By Jove!! It think you've got it.

    Also note minute tracks on dial.

    PS: get your Jimi Hendrix posters out for the black light session.

    RM
     
  22. Jerome collector

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    I looked through "Eli Terry and the Connecticut Shelf Clock" and found two clocks (both Seth Thomas) that appear to have a label with the same diamond pattern in the border. They're found on page 312, Figures 174A and 175. The one shown in Figure 175 has the same "BRASS BUSHED/Patent/CLOCKS" that the unknown column & splat has. The printer was Hudson & Skinner. I searched the Bulletin index and found a discussion in the Research Committee Activities & News (Vol. 19., Issue 186) column on printers that stated that their labels have only been found in Seth Thomas clocks. That article was from 1977, so perhaps they've been found in other clocks. However, there are no more recent references to them in the index. Clearly not prolific clock label printers.

    I think this raises the possibly that the clock and movement are a marriage to a near certainty. As I noted in an earlier post, Seth Thomas was not among the group supplied movements by H. Welton & Co.
     
  23. Curtis Jackson

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    I'm still leaning toward marriage as well - moreso after last night when I disassembled the movement and found no brass bushings.

    The movement doesn't quite fit between the vertical rails, and there is a piece of wood about a inch long glued to the side of the front plate acting like a spacer.

    ALTHOUGH, I only found one set of holes where it is nailed to the vertical rails. Peculiar. I will look again tonight though.

    Bad news is that this case would NOT clean up. As you can see, it's so dirty and neglected that it's nearly black. Oil soap did nothing to help the dirty look and a light rubdown with diluted denatured alcohol did next to nothing. I have begun removing the shellac but I'm avoiding the columns and splat for now.

    Is the stenciling actually paint or is it leaf? Can I carefully remove the shellac on the columns and splat and not hurt the stenciling?
     
  24. Jeremy Woodoff

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    The stenciling is bronze powder. It will undoubtedly come off with the shellac, unless you can remove only the upper layers of shellac. Possibly careful use of an abrasive rather than alcohol would give you more control over how much you remove.
     
  25. Peter A. Nunes

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    I would be very hesitant to use either alcohol or anything abrasive on the case or the columns and splat. I've been collecting these wood movement clocks since the early seventies, when I ruined several original finishes... I consider that "tuition", but I did learn from it. The main lesson was to leave finishes alone if they appeared to be any where near original (which this one certainly is). I sometimes clean the dirt off with Soft Scrub (Lemon Scented! Improved Cleaning Power!), warm water, and a piece of flannel. From your first picture, it is evident that the bronze powder decoration is entirely original, in excellent condition, and still very visible. This is the sort of look that knowledgeable and seasoned collectors prize... remember, this thing is probably 175 years old. Once you break out the alcohol and 4 O steel wool, irreversible things will start to happen. My two cents...
     
  26. laprade

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    Somewhere in my studio in Éire, I have a clock almost the same. I no longer have the movement or door, they went AWOL, but I still have the case. The caretaker is away, but a friend is going there during the week, and if they can find it, they will take a picture.

    The movement was of oak. The label on the back board said Boardman or something like that, that is why I need it to be looked at. I can't completely remember the name. There is a picture of the movement, B&W, taken in the 70s, but that will be hard to find!

    We had to replace quite a few teeth and also repair the pallets. I don't think it was brass bushed. The dial was almost the same in design and made of wood. Thinking about it, I might still have the dial somewhere.

    Sorry to be so vague!
     
  27. Sooth

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    I have not read all the comments, but I can say quite confidently that this is a Seth Thomas. The columns have a very distinct shape (used by ST) and so does the splat. As far as I'm aware, these were not manufactured by ST for a very long time, as I haven't found a large number of examples of these. I have one myself that is in atrocious condition (missing all the finish, the door, several case pieces (including the entire top), dial, movement etc. I basically have half a case and that's it.
     

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