image of object
From: Minor Myers, Jr., and Edgar DeN. Mayhew, New London County Furniture, 1640–1840 exh. cat. (New London, Conn.: The Lyman Allyn Museum, 1974), 72
Click the image to enlarge

Tall case clock


Object number

RIF6040

Maker

Casemaker Unknown
Clockmaker: possibly Reverend Willet Stillman, 1777–1826

Dimensions

231.14 x 50.17 x 25.08 cm (91 x 19 3/4 x 9 7/8 in.)

Date

1790–1800

Current location

Private collection

Geography

Made in Westerly, Rhode Island
(view a map of Rhode Island)

Medium

Maple (primary); maple (top boards of bonnet); pine (backboard, glue blocks of case interior, and saddle board); cherry(?) (molding of base and shell on base)

Marks

None

Inscriptions

“A,” in graphite, on interior sides of case; possibly “Elliot” and “6.7.47,” in graphite, on interior of waist door

Style

Chippendale

Provenance

By descent in the Davis family, Pawcatuck, Connecticut, to Mrs. Amos G. Avery (née Elizabeth Davis, 1911–1984), Pawcatuck and Ledyard, Connecticut; by descent to her son William Brown (born 1940), Pawcatuck, Connecticut, 1984; sold to private collection, 1984

Associated names

Elizabeth Davis
William Brown

Construction

The removable hood has a roof of thin boards shaped to align with its arched façade and nailed to its entablature in front and to its narrow arched backboard behind. Above the entablature are two single-piece scroll-boards, supported from behind by triangular blocks nailed with brads to the roof of the hoof. The scroll-boards center three rectangular plinths. The center one is fluted in front. The flanking plinths are plain, and each supports a turned and corkscrew-carved finial. The cornice molding is fixed to the hood with wood-filled fasteners. The single-board hood case-sides, with glazed portals, arched outside and rectangular inside, are set into grooves in the transverse boards of the hood base and are rabbeted at their back edge to fit over the case backboard. Upright hood back-boards perpendicular to the hood sides are nailed with brads to the hood entablature above and fixed in a large dovetail joint to the transverse boards of the hood base below. The molding at the outside edge of the hood base is integral with the base. In the corners formed by the vertical hood backs and hood sides are turned quarter colonettes held in place with brads. Freestanding colonettes in front are doweled and spliced into the hood base, as are the hood sides. The front board of the hood base is tenoned and wood-pinned to the transverse boards. The rails of the arched, molded and glazed door, which opens to a painted dial and brass works, are tenoned and wood-pinned to their stiles. There are no hood guides on the upper portions of the case sides. The hood sits upon a single-piece beaded cove molding at the top of the case waist. The case?s backboard is a single vertical board, broader at the base, glued into rabbets in the waist and base side boards. There are narrow filler strips, nailed with brads, at the hood. The bottom of the backboard is nailed with brads and rosehead nails to a case bottom, has an arched skirt, and forms the back brackets of the rear feet (the proper right back bracket has been lost). The rails of the case waist?s front are tenoned to their stiles without wood pins. The waist front is lapped over the side boards and contains an arched, molded, single-board, shell-carved door, whose hinges have been replaced. Within the case are vertically applied sections of cove molding used as glueblocks. Marking the transition from waist to base is a five-piece molding, whose elements are attached with brads and wood-filled fasteners. The two-board base front is half-blind dovetailed to the base sides. It centers an applied carved shell within a molded frame nailed with brads. Each side of the base molding and feet assembly is a single piece, nailed with brads through the cove molding above and through the bracket feet below. Examined by P. E. Kane and J. N. Johnson, September 15, 2014; notes compiled by T. B. Lloyd.

Notes

The clock retains remnants of what was probably its original red paint.

See also


Bibliography

Edgar Den. Mayhew and Minor Myers Jr., New London County Furniture, 1640–1840, exh. cat. (New London, Conn.: Lyman Allyn Art Museum, 1974), 72, no. 85, ill.
Chris Bailey, Two Hundred Years of American Clocks and Watches (Englewood Cliffs, N. J.: Prentice Hall, 1975), 79–80, fig. 73.