E. Howard & Co., Boston, MA. Model No. 7, "School, Office and Bank Clocks." Ordered by D. O. L. Warlock in St John New Brunswick in 3/27/1877.
Daniel O’Leary “DOL” Warlock (1819-1901) was born in Killarney, County Kerry, Ireland. In 1839, at the age of 20, he emigrated to St. John, New Brunswick as a trained jeweler and watchmaker. In 1848, he married Mary Campbell, the daughter of John G. Campbell. John Campbell was a Barrister at Law in St. John. Campbell was formerly of Ballyshannon, County Donegal, Ireland. The union of Campbell’s daughter and Warlock helped to establish Warlock a member of the city’s Catholic elite and intern, provided him with excellent business contacts. His business, for most of his career, was located on King Street, and for many years at the corner of King and Charlotte until it was lost in the Great Fire of St John on June 20th, 1877.
A March 27, 1877 entry in the records of the E. Howard Clock Company states that a movement was already at the Howard factory and that it was to be "fitted into a No.7 case. This clock was also to have the dial signed "D. O. L. Warlock / St John’s NB" in place of the E. Howard name. This example has that signature under the current E. Howard & Co. Boston name. It is now a ghost signature and it clearly legible under the certain light conditions. Warlock did not order many clocks from the E. Howard Company. In the years that the records cover, only a few are ordered and sent to St. John’s. A couple Number 12’s, a Number 8 and interestingly another Number 7 were sent up.
This very attractive wall timepiece is E. Howard’s Model Number 7. It was manufactured by the E. Howard & Company of Boston, Massachusetts. It was originally marketed as being, "Well adapted for banks, insurance offices and large rooms." Of the five E. Howard & Company Figure Eight forms, the No., 7 is arguably one of the most difficult sizes to find. As a result, this is considered a rare clock and is the most important version to find if your goal is to assemble the entire set of five.
The No. 7 is second to the largest of five sizes. This case measures 4 feet 2 inches long. This example is constructed in black walnut and retains a very pleasing finish which has been recently waxed and rubbed down. The color is excellent. The front of this case serves double duty as a door. The decorative carvings at both ends of the case are attached to this door. The bezel moldings are nicely formed and add a very nice three dimensional quality to the case appearance. Please note the applied ½ round moldings that trim the edges of the middle section. Most figure eight forms are flat in this location. The door is hinged and swings to the right. The openings in this door are fitted with glass. The upper glass is clear and through it, you are able to view the dial. The middle tablet or throat glass which is in the shape of an hour glass is decorated in black and gold from the back. The center section is left clear so that you can view the motion of the gilt wooden pendulum rod. The lower circular tablet is painted in the traditional E. Howard colors of black, red and gold. The center of this is also left clear in order to view the brass faced pendulum bob. Both painted painted tablets are in good original condition.The heavy iron dial on this clock measures 12 inches in diameter. The white field or background is in excellent original condition. It was painted with a heavy coat of paint. The black has been relined. The hours are indicated with Roman style figures. The Company name is signed below the center arbor in script lettering. It reads, "E. Howard & Co., / Boston." This signature is painted over the original "D. O. L. Warlock / St John’s NB" signature. This appears to be an older restoration.
The hands are fitted with open diamonds out on the ends.
The weight driven movement is constructed in brass and is good quality. The Maker’s name can be found die-stamped into the front plate in the upper left corner. The plates a quite heavy and are finely finished. This movement is designed with a recoil escapement. The pendulum is carefully suspended from the bridge which is mounted to the top of the movement. The rod is made from straight grain cherry. Before it was constructed the wood was appropriately seasoned gilded. It now retains this original treatment. The 5.5 inch diameter bob is zinc and covered with a brass jacket. The brass is decorated with a number of engraved concentric rings. Ever other one is decorated with a damascene design. The original cast iron weight is impressed with the number 2. This clock is designed to run for 8 days on a full wind.
This clock was made om March 27th, 1877.
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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