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Clock 12

Seth Thomas "Pillar and Splat" Mantel Clock

27 x 17.25 x 4.75 inches

Federal, mahogany and mahogany veneered pine, 30−hour time and hourly striking "Pillar and Splat" mantel clock, made and sold by Seth Thomas, Plymouth, Ct. USA, circa 1827/28.

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Case: 26.25" x 4.75" x 17.25" mahogany and mahogany veneered pine mantel clock case, 'Pillar and Splat' model, with a mahogany arch splat at the top of the case flanked by two wooden capped plinths. The Splat is back by two original chamfered glue blocks, one to either side. The blocks have separated from the splat by wood shrinkage. The top panel contains the two wooden pulleys for the weights and are missing their dust covers. Below is the rectangular two section glazed door, the upper section with a glass overlying the dial and the lower with a reverse painted glass of a house within a landscape, the glasses held in by red putty. The door is flanked by two paint gilded half columns. The base molding sits on two carved animal paw feet with foliate ankles which reach up onto the front of either end of the base molding. there is a pine backboard with rectilinear tin cutout over the rear of the movement. The label inside the case still give credit to the invention of Eli Terry for one his original movement patents.

Dial: This is a rectangular wooden dial painted with Roman hours, dotted minute ring to the inside, matching steel skeletonized diamond−shaped hands, colorful floral spandrels and two winding apertures. Dial unsigned.

Movement: This is a rectangular wooden geared movement. the rectangular plates are oak, the hand−carved gears are cherrywood and the pillars connecting the plates are hickory. The escape wheel and the anchor escapement are metal. The reference to NAWCC Bulletin 208, October 1980, page 479, shows what was thought to be a similar movement made by Seth Thomas in Figure 31, the movement type 1.513. (Located at the American Clock and Watch Museum in Bristol, Connecticut.)) This wooden geared movement was powered by the descent inside the case of two−barrel shaped iron weight, on each side of the case and would run the clock for about 30 hours and cause striking on the hour on a large bell below the movement which was screwed to the backplate. A long metal pendulum rod and small brass bob swung from the upper front plate and the bob would swing below and be seen in the aperture in the painted glass. The movement would not be signed.

Condition: Case − Fair − The case has been fully refinished. Originally the columns were black and would be stenciled in gilt bronze particles, but has since been painted with gold paint. The splat has been refinished to show the mahogany color and graining. Originally this was also stenciled in patterns such as cornucopias of flowers and fruit. The reverse painted glass is original but about 30−40% has thinned and worn away, so that its condition is colorful but is in need for restoration by an expert. It is not worth doing in this clock. Dial − Very Good − No real problems here. The dial has not been relined. Movement − Although it has an age crack it is original, genuine and hopefully functional.


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