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Photo: Courtesy The Henry Ford, Dearborn, Mich., 30.1046.2
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Tall case clock


Object number

RIF2234

Maker

Casemaker Unknown
Clockmaker Unknown
(dial) James Osborne, active 1808 - 1813

Dimensions

233.68 x 53.98 x 27.94 cm (92 x 21 1/4 x 11 in.)

Date

1785–1800

Current location

The Henry Ford

Geography

Made in Newport, Rhode Island, or made in Birmingham
(view a map of Rhode Island)

Medium

Mahogany (primary); chestnut (block behind scroll board and top of hood); cherry (dial mat, blocks on interior of hood, and seat board); yellow poplar (back board of hood, block under center finial [original?]); maple (base of hood); pine (back board)

Marks

"OSBORNE," cast into false plate behind dial

Inscriptions

An arch, incised and in graphite, on interior and exterior back boards of case

Style

Chippendale

Provenance

Israel Sack (1883–1959), Boston; sold to The Henry Ford, Dearborn, Michigan, 1930

Associated names

Israel Sack

Construction

The removable hood has a single-board top, chamfered at the sides, attached to the tops of the hood sides with rosehead nails. To the top of the hood?s two-part scrollboard is attached, with wood-filled fasteners, a single-piece cornice molding, which ends in carved rosettes. The rosettes are secured to the scrollboard by screwpockets (the proper left screw is missing). Behind the upper piece of the scrollboard is a conformingly shaped block. The hood supports two plain rectangular plinths with simple caps, upon which sit spherical, fluted finials with turned flames, and a matching central finial. The scrollboard is lapped over the fronts of the hood?s side frieze boards. At the bottom of the scroll- and frieze boards is a single-piece architrave molding nailed with brads and wood-filled fasteners, and centering a small, slightly askew, keystone. The hood?s flat-top, arched-bottom backboard is fixed with rosehead nails into rabbets in the back of the frieze boards. The hood sides, which have no portals, are nailed with rosehead nails from within to the frieze boards and from below to the transverse boards of the hood base. The hood sides? back edges are rabbeted to allow them to fit over the case?s backboard, and they fit into grooves in the top of the hood base. The three-piece half-round, fluted colonettes at the back of the hood are tenoned and nailed into the frieze boards and hood base. The arched, hinged, glazed door opens to a painted dial and brass works. The hood slides into place over guides nailed with brads to the single-board case waist, and rests upon a two-part beaded cove molding with a small segmental blocking strip behind. The case back is a continuous, arched, vertical board glued and nailed with brads into rabbets in the waist case sides, and nailed with brads to the case bottom. Also glued into blocking and nailed with brads to the case bottom are vertical strips at the base which form the back face of the rear bracket feet. There are prominent arched scribe lines on the main backboard?s inside and outside faces. There are no glue blocks within the case. The stiles and rails of the waist?s front meet in mortise and tenon joints and are lapped over the single-board case sides. The arched, lipped, thumb-molded frame of the door in the waist also consists of tenoned stiles and rails, each joint showing one wood pin on the door?s inside face. The blocked and shell-carved panel on the door?s outside faces appears to be glued and face-nailed with brads to the frame. A single-piece molding between the waist and base is nailed to them and blocking below with brads. The stiles at the front of the paneled base are mitered to and lapped over their top rail. The bottom rail appears to be tenoned to its stiles. The base molding is fixed with brads and wood-filled fasteners to the case bottom. A portion of the single-board sides of the base extend behind the side-facing rear bracket of the rear feet. Examined by P. E. Kane and J. N. Johnson, August 6, 2014; notes compiled by T. B. Lloyd.

Bibliography

Donald A. Shelley, "Henry Ford and the Museum: The Furniture," Antiques 73, no. 2 (February 1958): 159, fig. 26, left.