Seth Thomas. Plymouth, Connecticut. Model No., 2 Pillar & Scroll. In a reeded case with an Inside / Outside escapement. This early clock was made circa 1816. 220065

This is a very good example of a most attractive Pillar & Scroll shelf clock retaining the pasted label, E. TERRY’S /Patent Clocks, / MADE and SOLD / BY / SETH THOMAS: / PLYMOUTH, CON.

This is one of five examples currently known and is described along with a second known example that is discussed in an article written by W.F. Pritchett and is published in the 1962 NAWCC Bulletin.  A third example is described by Tran Dui Ly in American Clocks Vol. 3, page 143. Two other examples are known.

This mahogany case features a older but not an original finish. Amazingly, the feet, scroll work or horns and returns are all original to this clock. Both horns have succumb to shrinkage and have tilted back slightly. The case is surmounted with three wooden turned finials. Reeded moldings flank the large door in the front of the case. This door is fitted with a single piece of glass that is visually divided into two sections. This is an original glass and is in excellent condition. The original scene has had some minor in-painting from the back. It depicts a garden setting. A memorial in the form of a plinth and an urn on top filled with flowers is located on the right. A horse is depicted trotting across the scene. An opening in the sky is located to the right of center. Through this window, one can view the brass faced pendulum bob. The upper section of the glass is painted in the manner in which the corners of the dial are usually decorated. Colorful fans are the predominant decorative feature. The dial is wood. It features an Arabic time ring where the hour numerals are presented in an upright or tumbled fashion. The quarter hours are also marked on the interior of the minute ring. The minutes are demarked with slashes. Brass hands depict the time. In the center of this dial is patriotic scene. It is an American symbol that includes an Eagle with a shield on its chest, spears, cannonballs and a drum. In the upper section of the dial has a circular opening that allows one to view the brass escape-wheel. The wooden geared movement is weight driven and is designed to run thirty-hours on a full wind. This clock strikes the hour on a cast iron bell that is mounted inside the case on the backboard. The back plate is solid, the front plate is described as open straps. This model features a count wheel strike train. (The Model one was fitted with a rack and snail striking system.) The Clockmaker's label is in very good original condition. It is pasted inside the case on to the backboard.

This fine clock was made circa 1816 and stands approximately 27.5 inches tall, 17.25 inches wide and 4.5 inches deep. This is the best example of the five known.


About Seth Thomas of Plymouth and later Thomaston, Connecticut.

Thomas was born in Wolcott, Connecticut, in 1785. He was apprenticed as a carpenter and joiner, and worked building houses and barns. He started in the clock business in 1807, working for clockmaker Eli Terry. Thomas formed a clock-making partnership in Plymouth, Connecticut with Eli Terry and Silas Hoadley as Terry, Thomas & Hoadley.

In 1810, he bought Terry’s clock business, making tall clocks with wooden movements, though chose to sell his partnership in 1812, moving in 1813 to Plymouth Hollow, Connecticut, where he set up a factory to make metal-movement clocks. In 1817, he added shelf and mantel clocks. By the mid-1840s, he changed over to brass from wooden movements. He made the clock that is used in Fireman’s Hall. He died in 1859, whereupon the company was taken over by his son, Aaron, who added many styles and improvements after his father’s death. The company went out of business in the 1980s.


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