E. Howard & Company. Boston, Massachusetts. Wall clock No. 4 with an A. Howard stamped movement. BBB-13

This is an outstanding example of E. Howard’s Model Number 4. It was made by the E. Howard & Company of Boston, Massachusetts circa 1860. This unusual example features a movement that is die-stamped by Albert Howard.

Albert Howard was born in Hingham, Massachusetts on May 20, 1833 the youngest of five children. He was a cousin of Edward Howard’s and at the age of 16, he trained in the clock and balance factory of Howard & Davis. In fact he spent most of his working career involved with the various Howard Clock Companies. At the age of 22, he is listed in the Massachusetts Census as a clockmaker living in Roxbury. In 1857-58, he is listed in the Boston Directories as a clock and balance maker located at 109 Washington Street. It is interesting to note that this is also the same address that Samuel Curtis and Edward Howard listed as their address during this year. In 1858, he is again listed but as a “Clockmaker at Edward Howard’s.” He married Susan Kingman in Boston on May 11, 1859. In 1881, Albert became the general manager of the E. Howard Watch & Clock Company and was also appointed to the board of directors. Albert died of Apoplexy in his home located at 13 Brook Ave in Roxbury on January 1, 1893.

Several wall clock examples are known signed by this Maker. A small number of clocks signed Howard & Davis and E. Howard are found with his die-stamp on the movement.

This model is the second smallest of the five banjo sizes offered by this company. It measures a very manageable 32 inches in length. As a comparison, the smallest example of this set is the No. 5 and that clock measures 29 inches long. The No.1, the largest of the five banjo forms measures a full 50 inches in length.

This case has very pleasing proportions. It is constructed in cherry and retains its original virbrantly formatted grain painted decoration. This grain pattern was done in ink with the intention of simulating the bold grain patterns found in rosewood. The finish is quite nice and could possibly be original. Is has taken a darker tone and the surface can be best described as being heavy. The original shellac has slightly broken down The rounded frames are fitted with glass. The two lower panels are decorated or are painted from the back in the traditional E. Howard colors of black, gold and red. The bezel is fitted with clear glass. This protects the paper dial. This model features a paper dial that measures 8 inches in diameter. The company’s name is signed in script. The place location is printed in block lettering.

The movement is made of brass and is excellent quality. It weight driven and features a recoil escapement. It considered to be an accurate time keeper. The movement is die stamped on the front plate, “A. HOWARD / BOSTON.” It is powered by the original cast iron weight and is designed to run eight-days on a full wind. The pendulum rod is wood and supports a bass faced lead bob. This bob is decorated with a concentric ring turned design. Every other ring retains its original damascene design. This is a very good bob.

This example was made circa 1860.

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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 “Willard’s Patent Time Pieces” written by Paul Foley.

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