Timothy Chandler of Concord, New Hampshire. A tall case clock.

This is a very good example of a popular case form made in Concord, New Hampshire circa 1795.

This fine example is formatted in the traditional woods and proportions that one would expected from the Concord, New Hampshire region circa 1795. This interesting example is somewhat unusual in that it features fluted quarter columns in the waist section that terminate in brass quarter capitals. This is a decorative and very effect detail that is seen in numerous other case styles. It was more popular in clocks that featured hoods or bonnets that are fitted with a pierced and open fret work pattern. This case form, having the heavily molded arches was used extensively by a number of clockmakers from this region. This included Levi & able Hutchins. Very few of these known cases incorporate this quarter column detail. The vast majority of the clocks found that share what has become to be known as a Concord form, features a waist section that is flat at the corners which tends to make the clock appear heavier in it’s form. This example is easily attributed to the cabinet shop of David Young who worked in Hopkinton, NH. This attribution is based on a number of labeled examples that share the construction and form characteristics exhibited here.

This case stands proudly on applied bracket feet. They are applied to the bottom of the case and retain excellent height. The waist section is long and is fitted with a large rectangular shaped waist door. Through this one can gain access to the weights and brass faced pendulum bob for rating. The front corners are fitted with fluted quarter columns that terminate in brass quarter capitals. This is an unusual feature for this specif form. The result is a softening of the edges making this case visually narrower that one that omits this detail. The bonnet can be easily described as a swans neck form and this example is better shaped than most. The moldings are not as heavily formed and the arches have more vertical height than the vast majority of the typical Concord case styles. The arches terminate in carved pinwheels and center the finial and plinth located in the center of the hood. Two additional finials are mounted on simple plinths at the outer corners of the case. These brass finials are original to this clock and are exceptional. They are described as wine cups. The bonnet or hood columns are turned smooth and fluted along their length. These are mounted into brass capitals. Additional columns are positioned at the back of the case for visual balance. The side lights are a tombstone form and are fitted with glass. The bonnet door is an arched form and is also fitted with glass.

The iron dial is colorfully painted. Floral decorations are located in the four spandrel areas and also in the arch. Raised gesso patterns that are highlighted with gilt paint frame these floral decorations. The pattern that is exhibited in the arch is quite fancy. The time ring is formatted with Roman numeral hour markers. Arabic numerals are used as the five minute markers. This dial also displays the date of the month calendar and the seconds on subsidiary dials. This dial is signed by the clockmaker below that calendar. The signature reads in block lettering, “ Timo Chandler / CONCORD.” Several other examples have been found with this unusual variant of signature. One offered for sale by the late Herschel Burt in 1987 and another one offered for sale by Tim & Barb Martin in 1992 come to mind.

The movement is constructed in brass. It is designed to run eight days on a full wind and is weight driven. This clock strikes the hours on a cast iron bell. It is good quality. This clock stands a very manageable 7 feet 4 inches tall and was made circa 1795.

About Timothy Chandler of Concord, New Hampshire.

Major Timothy Chandler was born on April 25th, 1762 in Rumford, Maine and died on July 22nd, 1848 in Concord, NH. He is the son of Timothy and Elizabeth (Copp) Chandler and was one of five chldren. It is not known who specifically taught him the art of clockmaking. It is known that he traveled to Pomfret, Connecticut in 1770-1783 to serve an apprenticeship to Jonathan Hale who was a wool card maker. It is speculated that Chandler may have also trained as a clockmaker with Peregrine White who was at work in nearby Woodstock. (Timothy named one of his sons Peregrine White Chandler.) Timothy moved back to Concord in 1791 and advertised tall clocks for sale. He was also appointed Sealer of Weights and Measures in Concord, NH. It is reported that in Novemeber of 1787, Timothy married Sarah Abbott of Concord. This suggests that he must have traveled back and forth to Concord form Pofret before he settled there. Together they had twelve children. In Concord, Timothy became a prolific clockmaker until his retirement in 1829. His ain competition being Levi and Abel Hutchins. Timothy was responsible for training several clockmakers including his sons, Timothy Jay, John Bradley and Abeil. He also trained Deacon Cyrus Eastman of Amherst, NH. Eastman served a seven year apprenticeship which ended about 1814. In 1797, he enlisted with the Minute Men and received the commission of Major in 1799. He also served as vice-president and then the president to the Merrimack Agricultural Society in the early 1800’s. In 1808, he was appointed the Surveyor of Highways in Concord. On the evening of August 17th, 1809, he suffered a fire that originated from his air furnace or forge in his clock manufactory. The manufactory, with all its contents, the house, the barn full of hay and two other hay barns were lost at a value of $5,000. Interestingly, the citizens of Concord raised $1,200 in order to help off set his losses and to rebuild. Chandler would rebuild, and continue his career as a clockmaker. In 1814, when Governor Gilman ordered the creation of local companies to defend the town in the event of attack, Chandler, now in his 50s, again volunteered to serve in the militia. In 1819, he served as Chairman of first “Lancastrian School.” In 1820, he and his son Timothy Jay formed a partnership as T. Chandler & Son. This lasted four years until T. Chandler & Co was formed in 1824 and lasted until 1828. This second company also included Timothy Jay. In 1825, Timothy Chandler was one of the nine officers of the newly formed New Hampshire Mutual Fire Insurance Company, one of New Hampshire’s earliest fire insurance providers. In 1827, he served as chairman of the group that organized the Unitarian Society. In 1829 through 1830 he joined his son Abeil under the firm name of A. Chandler & Co. After 1830, he worked alone and also served as President of Concord’s first Temperance Society, was Vice President of Concord Mechanics Association and One of 17 original trustees of N.H. Savings Bank. In 1834, he named 3 of Concord’s streets.

We have owned numerous examples of his work. These include tall clocks, timepieces, mirror clocks and shelf clocks. A fair number of silver items are also known.

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