Charles Alvah Smith of Brattleboro, Vermont. Wag on the wall. No. 605. One of the last. 219030

This very decorative example is signed and dated. It was made in September of 1945 and is numbered “605.” Apparently, all of his production is signed, dated and numbered by the clockmaker. The case is constructed in walnut and is line inlaid. The joinery is tight and well executed. The wooden geared movement is wonderfully made and nicely detailed. This example features a rolling verge escapement. This clock is powered by a weight that is decoratively designed. It features an eight sided wooden canister that is line inlaid and is well built. The wooden counter weight is also inlaid and nicely detailed. The length of the run is determined by the length of the drop. From a normal mounting position, this example will run almost two days. The pendulum bob is also inlaid. The decoration is in the form of a star. It is suspended by a turned wooden rod. The dial is paper and applied to a wooden backboard. The hands are maple and indicate the time on a time ring that features Roman style numerals.

This clock measures approximately 26 inches long from the top of the bonnet to the bottom of the pendulum. The back board is approximately 12.75 inches long and 7 inches wide. This clock sits out from the wall 5.25 inches. This is inventory number 219030.

About Charles Alvah Smith of Brattleboro, Vermont.

Charles Alvah Smith was a maker of very interesting wooden cased and wooden geared clocks. He was born on his grandfathers farm in Guilford, Vermont on November 3, 1866. His parents, Sanford Alvah Smith and Ellen (Hunt) Smith had three children. His father Sanford, owned and operated a business that made carriages for children and later other various wood products likes wooden sleds, tricycles and children’s toys. Charles joined this business in 1889 and quickly moved up through the company ranks. It is here that he learned the trade of fine woodworking. Sometime around 1820, Charles retired after 35 years of being involved in the family business. While in retirement, he developed many relationships with various local business enterprises as a designer. A clever person, he was award as many as six patents that are mechanical in nature. One patent is for a foot pedal starter used in an automobile. A patent second was for a circular woodcutting table saw. An example of his involvement with local businesses was his involvement with the Franklin Motor Car Company. He advised their planning and production divisions.

Charles was a Yankee. He collected scraps of wood from his furniture making business and began to make clocks in his home workshop. He first presented them as gifts and soon went into production sometime in 1931 until his death in 1946. During this time he produced approximately 614 clocks. Each clock he made from start to finish. He made the entire clock to his very high quality standards. For additional information regarding his interesting person, please read, Charles Alvah Smith: Vermont Maker of Unusual Wood Clocks, written by John M. Anderson. This is a soft cover, 60 plus page description of this ingenious Yankee clockmaker which was published by the National Association of Watch and Clock Collectors (NAWCC) in December of 1990.


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