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Photo: Courtesy of Gary R. Sullivan, photo by David Hansen
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Tall case clock

Object number



Clockmaker William Claggett, 1694–1749
Casemaker Unknown


83 1/2 20 3/8 10 1/2 in. (212.09 51.75 26.67 cm)



Current location

Gary R. Sullivan Antiques, Inc.


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


Walnut (primary); pine (backing of upper moldings of hood, spacer between side of hood and molding, lower back board of hood, blocks for hinges, and backing for molding at top of waist); yellow poplar (upper back board of hood); beech (base of hood); maple (seat board)


“Wm[superscript]: Claggett / Newport,” engraved on brass dial


"Jan 11 - 1856 - J[possibly] Greene," “throp," "[?]0/," and “S A Winthrope,” in graphite, on interior of waist door; “[illegible text] of Claggett / Finished Monday / the 9 day of August / 1734” and possibly “CBClio,” in chalk, on interior waist door; mathematical calculations, in chalk, on interior waist door


Gary R. Sullivan Antiques, Inc., Sharon, Massachusetts, 2014


The removable hood has a separate sarcophagus top which is substantially rebuilt. At each front corner of the hood stands a ball-turned finial. The hood?s frieze board is fixed from within the hood sides by screws. Above the frieze is blocking, to which is attached a cornice consisting of a large cove molding above a single-piece crown. At the bottom of the frieze is a single-piece architrave molding. The hood?s backboards (the upper one is replaced) are nailed with brads to the back edges of the hood sides. The hood sides, which contain rectangular glazed portals, are nailed with brads through the bottom of the transverse boards of the hood base. They are also held in place by wood strips inside the top of the transverse boards. The lower edge of the single-piece molding at the hood base allows the hood to slide onto the single-piece beaded cove and its triangular blocking at the top of the case?s waist. The rectangular, glazed, molded door, integral with the hood?s front three-quarter-round colonettes, opens to a brass dial and works. The hood?s rear quarter-round colonettes are nailed with brads to the back edge of the case sides. The stiles and rails of the case?s waist front surround a plain rectangular hinged door with molded edge. The door?s interior face is missing transverse braces at the top and bottom, and has nail holes and shadows which indicate the presence of earlier, alternate hinges. The case back is a continuous vertical board, glued and nailed with brads into rabbets in the single-board case sides. There are filler strips at the hood and at the base, the latter being blocking between the lower extremities of the waist and base case-sides. A single-piece molding marking the transition from waist to base is fixed to the sides and front of the waist and base, and to blocking within the case. The lower portion of the backboard is replaced. Examined by P. E. Kane and J. N. Johnson, September 25, 2014; notes compiled by T. B. Lloyd.


Patricia E. Kane et al., Art and Industry in Early America: Rhode Island Furniture, 1650–1830, exh. cat. (New Haven, Conn.: Yale University Art Gallery, 2016), 111nn7–8.
Donald L. Fennimore and Frank L. Hohmann III, Claggett: Newport's Illustrious Clockmakers (Winterthur, Del.: Winterthur Museum, Garden, and Library, 2018), 166–67, 240, no. 4, WC-4.
The Claggetts of Newport: Master Clockmakers in Colonial America, exh. cat. (Newport, R I.: Redwood Library and Athenaeum, 2019), 21, ill.