E. Howard & Co., Boston, MA. Model No. 20. "Marble Dial Clock."
The model No. 20 marble dial clock was one of the more popular marble clocks sold. This model was cataloged in three sizes. Extreme dimensions of 28 inches square, 36 inches square and 42 inches square were offered in the catalogs. Company records indicate that custom sizes were made. A popular variant was a model that measured 22 inches square. A large percentage of model 20s were ordered as presentation pieces having a name of an individual, public hall or business painted on the dial. Of coarse they were popular in these settings because the dial was durable and easy to clean.
This example measures 28 inches across at the widest points. The case is approximately 4.5 inches deep. The marble selected for this example features a subtle grain pattern. The predominately white stone features light grey suggestive veins. The perimeter features a nicely formed edge and is not cracked of chipped. This stone is fitted onto a pine case that retains much of its original white paint on the outside surface. The marble is secured to the case is with two screws. The dial or time ring is painted onto the marble. This dial measures 24 inches in diameter. Roman style hour numerals, mark the hours. Arabic five minute markers are represented on a much smaller scale. The Maker’s name and working location are presented below the center. The painted graphics on this example are for the most part in original condition. There has been some minor strengthening to the black.
The 8-day weight driven movement is constructed in brass and is very good quality. The Maker’s name and working location are die-stamped onto the heavily cast front plate. This movement is also fitted with a Geneva stop-work winding mechanism. The pendulum rod is made of wood and is painted black. The bob is zinc and covered with a brass. This is supported by a bridge. It extends to the top of the movement where an auxiliary device is fitted. This is designed to allow one to regulate the time by turning a wheel with a key through the front of the dial. This is necessary because interior access is somewhat limited. This clock is powered by a cast iron weight which is compounded in order to run for an eight day duration.
This fine example was made circa 1870. This clock is inventory number TT-82.
About Edward Howard of Boston, Massachusetts.
The E. Howard Clock Company has an outstanding reputation for making high quality weight driven wall timepieces, standing regulators, public clocks and electro-mechanical master and watchman clocks.
The E. Howard & Company succeeded the Howard & Davis firm in 1857. The Howard and Davis firm was comprised of Edward Howard and David P. Davis and was established in 1842. Both men served their apprenticeship with Aaron Willard Jr of Boston. This firm was involved in watch and clock manufacturing since 1842. This firm also made high grade clocks, precision balances, sewing machines and fire engines. After the dissolution of Howard and Davis, Edward Howard went on to become Boston’s leading manufacture of weight driven clocks. This included residential clocks, commercial clocks and tower clocks. They also sold a large number of watchman and salve clock systems. These sold well in the late 1800’s.
It has been said that the E. Howard Clock company never made an inexpensive clock and that everything they made was of very good quality. As a result, Howard clocks have become very collectible and are prized by their owners. Today, the E. Howard clock name enjoys outstanding name recognition.
For a more in depth reading of E. Howard and his various businesses, please read Paul Foley’s book, Willard’s Patent Time Pieces.
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