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American Clocks

The history of American clocks begins in colonial New England in the late 1700s. The first American clocks were made by hand one at a time and were mostly tall clocks or grandfather clocks.Thomas Harland, a skilled English clockmaker who settled in Connecticut, trained Eli Terry, who founded the first American clock factory around 1800.

Eli Terry, along with Seth Thomas and Silas Hoadley, applied water-powered machinery to clockmaking. This led to the timepiece industry’s introduction to the Industrial Revolution. Factories began to mass produce clocks with interchangeable parts, a technique that became known as the American system of manufacturing.

Some American clockmakers who made a lasting impression were the Willard family of Massachusetts, Elias Ingraham and Company, and the Ansonia Company. Contemporary New York design company Tiffany and Co. was founded in 1837, representing a departure from European opulence to the new American style. By 1867, Tiffany and Co. was a major competitor in the world of silver, fine jewels, and classic timepieces. Tiffany clocks are sold in more than 200 stores worldwide.


Quick Facts

  • A Simon Willard 1805 Banjo clock sold for $7,380 at Skinner of Boston in 2015
  • An E. Ingraham rosewood Spectacle shelf clock with painted zinc dial in Roman numerals sold for $7,703 at Skinner in 2009
  • An 1880 Tiffany gilt brass and enamel carriage clock featuring Corinthian columns, porcelain dial, and Arabic numerals sold for $4,920 at Skinner Auctions in 2015

Recommended Items at Auction

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SETH THOMAS CRYSTAL REGULATOR CLOCK
Sep 30, 12:00 PM EDT
SETH THOMAS CRYSTAL REGULATOR CLOCK
by Converse Auctions
Est: $100- $200
$303 Bids
Unique Sterling art nouveau clock marked Waltham
Oct 02, 10:00 AM CDT
Unique Sterling art nouveau clock marked Waltham
by Thriftiques of Iowa
Est: $10- $1,000
$112 Bids
Seth Thomas ship's clock Vintage
Oct 02, 11:00 AM AEST
Seth Thomas ship's clock Vintage
by Pfeffer's Auctions
Est: AUD100- AUD200
AUD202 Bids
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SMITH'S 8 DAY 4 JEWEL STARBURST CLOCK, MADE IN UK
Sep 29, 9:00 AM AEST
SMITH'S 8 DAY 4 JEWEL STARBURST CLOCK, MADE IN UK
by Albion Antique Auction Centre
Est: AUD40- AUD100
AUD452 Bids
DOUBLE BUBBLE CLOCK HASTINGS PISTON RINGS
Nov 12, 9:00 AM CST
DOUBLE BUBBLE CLOCK HASTINGS PISTON RINGS
by Millers Auction Co.
Est: $0- $0
$101 Bid
RARE DOUBLE BUBBLE CLOCK DAVID BERG MEATS CHICAGO
Nov 12, 9:00 AM CST
RARE DOUBLE BUBBLE CLOCK DAVID BERG MEATS CHICAGO
by Millers Auction Co.
Est: $0- $0
$101 Bid
TIFFANY & CHELSEA SHIP'S CLOCK
Oct 02, 11:00 AM EDT
TIFFANY & CHELSEA SHIP'S CLOCK
by Americana Auctions
Est: $500- $800
$2501 Bid
Howard Miller Brass Desk Clock.
Oct 01, 10:00 AM EDT
Howard Miller Brass Desk Clock.
by Casco Bay Auctions
Est: $40- $60
$201 Bid
SETH THOMAS Vintage Orange Wall Clock
Oct 19, 10:00 AM EDT
SETH THOMAS Vintage Orange Wall Clock
by The Benefit Shop Foundation Inc.
Est: $20- $40
$11 Bid
Panama Pacific Steamship Co. San Francisco Clock
Sep 29, 6:00 PM EDT
Panama Pacific Steamship Co. San Francisco Clock
by Mebane Antique Auction
Est: $10- $1,000
$51 Bid
Original American timber cased mantel clock Antique
Oct 02, 11:00 AM AEST
Original American timber cased mantel clock Antique
by Pfeffer's Auctions
Est: AUD0- AUD0
AUD101 Bid
Seth Thomas Lever Wall Clock For Locomotives
Oct 07, 8:00 PM EDT
Seth Thomas Lever Wall Clock For Locomotives
by Mebane Antique Auction
Est: $10- $1,000
$51 Bid
Seth Thomas Beehive Mantle Clock
Oct 12, 11:00 AM EDT
Seth Thomas Beehive Mantle Clock
by Bodnar's Auction Sales
Est: $100- $200
$101 Bid
Seth Thomas Copper Mantle Clock
Oct 12, 11:00 AM EDT
Seth Thomas Copper Mantle Clock
by Bodnar's Auction Sales
Est: $200- $400
$101 Bid
Tiffany and Company Travel/Desk Clock
Oct 01, 10:00 AM EDT
Tiffany and Company Travel/Desk Clock
by Gary R. Wallace Auctioneers Inc.
Est: $0- $0
$251 Bid
Tiffany & Co. Desk Clock
Sep 30, 9:00 AM EDT
Tiffany & Co. Desk Clock
by Keystone Auctions LLC
Est: $50- $150
$301 Bid
Seth Thomas US Navy Ships Clock
Oct 12, 11:00 AM EDT
Seth Thomas US Navy Ships Clock
by Bodnar's Auction Sales
Est: $100- $200
$101 Bid
An Ansonia, New York Wall Mounted Clock
Oct 02, 11:00 AM AEDT
An Ansonia, New York Wall Mounted Clock
by Theodore Bruce
Est: AUD150- AUD250
AUD701 Bid
Danbury Mint Dome Time Clock
Oct 09, 7:00 PM BST
Danbury Mint Dome Time Clock
by James Auctioneers London
Est: £35- £55
£350 Bids
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Lenox Porcelain Clock, Timely Traditions
Oct 09, 9:00 AM EDT
Lenox Porcelain Clock, Timely Traditions
by Lion and Unicorn
Est: $10- $200
$100 Bids
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Lenox Porcelain Clock, Timely Traditions
Oct 09, 9:00 AM EDT
Lenox Porcelain Clock, Timely Traditions
by Lion and Unicorn
Est: $10- $200
$100 Bids
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Lenox Square Table Clock, Corinthian Collection
Oct 09, 9:00 AM EDT
Lenox Square Table Clock, Corinthian Collection
by Lion and Unicorn
Est: $10- $200
$100 Bids
DOIBLE BUBBLE CLOCK KOSHER ZION SAUSAGE CO CHICAGO
Nov 12, 9:00 AM CST
DOIBLE BUBBLE CLOCK KOSHER ZION SAUSAGE CO CHICAGO
by Millers Auction Co.
Est: $0- $0
$100 Bids

Sellers Who Sell American Clocks


Bodnar's Auction Sales

Bodnar's Auction Sales

Heritage Auctions

Heritage Auctions

Americana Auctions

Americana Auctions

Roland Auctions NY

Roland Auctions NY