Wallace Goodwin. A North Attleboro, Massachusetts made Timepiece. Wall clock. 221167

This is a fine example of an unusual wall timepiece made in North Attleboro, Massachusetts. This case form is affectionally called the “Dumbbell model” due to its shape. This case is constructed in cherry wood, and the design features a large circular head, a straight-sided waist section, and an octagon-shaped lower box. The forward-facing moldings are faux grain decorated with India ink. This original treatment is now somewhat subdued due to the natural darkening of the finish. This case is die-stamped by the case maker “DLW.” These initials are stamped into the bottom board. DLW stands for David L Williams. Williams was a cabinetmaker who constructed numerous cases for several clockmakers in the region. Recognizing cases that he stamped is a nice bonus for the clock collector.

The upper bezel measures 14.25 inches in diameter, and glass protects the dial. This bezel is hinged and opens to access the dial. The zinc dial sheet measures 12.75 inches in diameter. A paper dial is applied to it. Wallace seems to have preferred paper dials. Many of the Wallace clocks that we have seen are in this format. The closed minute ring measures 11-inches in diameter. Inside this ring are the Roman-style numerals that mark out each hour. Steel hands display the correct. This dial is signed in block lettering by the Maker. The signature reads, “W. GOODWIN, / NORTH ATTLEBORO, / MASS.” This paper dial is in good overall condition. There is a small tear located at about 10:15. The surface color is excellent. Behind the dial is a brass movement that is weight-driven. This example retains its original cast iron weight. The works will run 8-days when fully wound. This movement is constructed with a recoil escapement, alternate train, and straight movement pillars. Rectangular-shaped plates frame the gearing and still retain their original scrapping decoration. The rear plate is mounted to the pine backboard with two screws through the backplate. The movement also sits on a seat board. This board serves double duty as a weight stop. The pendulum hangs from the front of the movement. The rod is cherry wood and supports a brass-faced bob. A glass panel is fitted in the middle section of the case. The painted decoration on the glass is in excellent original condition. The center of the tablet is left undecorated. This enables one to view the gilded pendulum rod. The lower section of the case is an octagonal form measuring 10.5 inches across. The decoration on this glass has been professionally repainted to match the throat section. The center of this tablet features a decoratively formed viewing window comprised of three connected circular openings. The undecorated area is left clear so that one can see the brass-faced pendulum bob. The motion of this confirms that the clock is running.

This clock is an excellent example and was made circa 1860. This case measures approximately 33 inches long, 14.25 inches wide, and 4 inches deep.


About Wallace Goodwin of Attleboro and North Attleboro, Massachusetts. Jeweler, trader and clockmaker.

Wallace Goodwin was born in Ashfield, MA on November 8, 1811 and died on March 1, 1861 in Attleboro, Massachusetts. Wallace is buried at Mount Hope Cemetery, North Attleboro, Bristol, MA. Wallace married twice. First to Asenath Angeline Medley in 1838 and then to Harriet Richards Blackington in 1852. In the census records is is listed as a jeweler from about 1830 through 1860. The 1860 census record records him as a clock manufacturer. In 1853 through 54, he worked in New York City working as a manger of Tifft, Whiting & Co’s sales office. This was located at 170 Broadway. Returning to North Attleboro, he is listed as a clockmaker. When he past in 1861, his estate inventory listed 288 banjo clocks. An example of a fine wall timepiece is currently in the collection of the Ladd Observatory at Brown University.


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