Silas Burnham Terry cottage clock with torsion suspension. S. B. Terry & Co.

This unusual clock is quite small. The case measures a mere 8.25 tall, 6.25 inches wide and 3 inches deep. The case is veneered in richly grained rosewood and retains an original finish. The original gilt stencil remains in excellent condition. This is located in what I would consider the base of the clock. It reads, "S. B. TERRY & Co. / MANUFACTURER." This is framed in a very nice floral design. Additional gilt painted highlights include several of the case moldings.

The dial is painted tin. Note the hole in the dial between 4:30 and 6:30. This allows one to view the interesting motion of the torsion pendulum.

A torsion pendulum system allows this clock to run while being moved, transported or even turned upside down. This has a great advantage over a traditional pendulum clock movement if the clock is being used in an area where it is moving or vibrating. Examples of such locations are on board ships or trains. The torsion pendulum rotates on a horizontal plane. The weight or bob is suspended by a thin spring and the turning motion translates to the escapement. This brass constructed movement is key wound, spring powered and designed to run thirty hours on a full wind. The front plate is die stamped with the Maker’s patent date for this style of movement. It reads, ‘PATENTED / OCT 5TH 1852." The slow / fast adjustment is located at the back of the case.

This very collectable clock was made circa 1852.

Inventory number UU-37.

About Silas B. Terry of Terryville, Connecticut.

Silas B. Terry was born on February 1, 1807 and died of a heart attack May 20th, 1876. He was one of eight children born to Eli & Eunice (Warner) Terry. He worked in various clock making enterprises. Some of which included the firm S. B. Terry & Company (1852-1853), and Terryville MFG. Co. (1853-1854.) In 1854, Terry went bankrupt and took a job as a general manager of the William L. Gilbert & Company in Winsted, Connecticut. In 1861, he took a job as superintendent of the Waterbury Clock Company . In 1867, he formed the The Terry Clock Company at Waterbury with his sons. Silas’ early clocks were well made and often had interesting movements. The evidence of his work suggests that he loved to tinker.


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