P. H. Dudley walnut wall regulator made in New York. Dudley wall clock.

This is a fine example. The case is constructed in walnut and retains a lighter finish. It is somewhat larger than the more common E. Howard 70-12 or the Seth Thomas No. 2. This clock features an octagonal shaped top and door. The lower door is fitted with glass that has been decorated with gilt borders. The upper door opens to access a dial that measures 14 inches in diameter and is painted on tin. The formatting of the time ring is a little different than what we now consider the standard setup. The outer time ring displays the minutes. The five minute markers are indicated by diamonds and the numerical values are an Arabic form and positioned on the perimeter of the closed time ring. A space is left between this minute ring and the hour ring. Roman style numerals are use to de-mark each hour. Inside this ring is the Dudley name. It is signed “P.H.DUDLEY. / NY.” in this location. Above this, “ELECTRONICALLY CONTROLLED” is printed. The hands are well formed. The hour hand is a pierced spade form. The minute hand is a little more interesting in that it is stretched in order to reach out to the extended minute ring. One may also notice the letter “D” incorporated in the design. “D” for Dudley. Because of it’s length, this hand is counter balanced on the short end with a brass weight. Behind the dial is a weight powered movement.

The weight driven was made by Gustave Becker. It is a time only design and is said to be very good quality. The brass plates are trapezoid shape. The front plate of this clock is die-stamped with the number “193775.” It is powered by a brass covered weight that descends down the center of the case in front of the pendulum. The pendulum features an ebonized wood stick that supports a large brass covered bob. It also has a beat adjustment just below the movement. The pendulum and movement are mounted to a cast iron bracket that is mounted to the back of the case. This bracket is formed with the initials of “P” and “D.” The synchronizer mechanism would have also been mounted on this bracket beside the movement. It is now missing.

This case measures approximately 38 inches long, 18 inches wide and 5.5 inches deep. It was made circa 1879.

About Plimmon Henry (P. H.) Dudley of New York.

P.H. (Plimmon Henry) Dudley(1843-1924). Mr Dudley was a gifted civil and metallurgical engineer whose opinions on these matters were held in high regard and respected by the railroad industry. Concerning clocks in the development of standardizing time, he believed that by adjusting or synchronizing clocks along the rail line electronically. This was to be done simultaneously along the rail line by having them connected by a signal. This would intern decrease the variability of station clock displays. He had showed that if done by hand, the variation average was 3 minutes. By electrically controlling this adjustment, this variability would vanish. The system he developed was reliable and as a result, his clock sold well. His first clocks were installed in 1879 along the mainline stations on the Philadelphia, Wilmington & Baltimore Railroad. Due to their success, the following year they were installed on the New York Central & Hudson River Railroad. Still employed by railroad concerns, by 1882, he moved away from the horology side to work on other rail related issues. This departure of concentration left the market for high quality sycronizers wide open for other competitors.

For a more in depth description of Dudley, please read Bob Simon’s article published in the NAWCC Watch & Clock Bulletin dated March/April 2015.


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