Saturday, 21 April 2012

Seth Thomas

Seth Thomas - Clockmaker.

I know nothing about him except what my partner has told me over the years. He is a very enthusiastic clock lover, whose hobby is buying antique clocks and fixing them up. We have so many now we have stored a lot in the attic, but he still can't stop looking around antique shops, going to auctions and buying off Ebay. To be able to continue his love of buying and restoring he now he has begun selling the ones he has no room for.

Seth Thomas was an American clockmaker from the 19th century. He was an active clockmaker in Plymouth Hollow, Connecticut where he had a factory making mass produced clocks in the American style but with a brass movement. In the event of his death they renamed the town Thomaston. It's a good way to date his clocks, if they had been labelled  'Plymouth Hollow' they were usually made pre 1865, if they were labelled Thomaston they would have been made afterwards.

He had his own clock hands with the symbols S on the minute hand and T on the hour hand which were called, simply, ST hands. If you come across any hands with these symbols you are looking at Seth Thomas hands. He was also famous for producing OG and drop dial wall clocks. The clocks are wooden rectangular boxes with a brass movement inside often with colourful glass tablets symbolising flowers or the American eagle, which were reverse painted.

We have several of his clocks adorning our walls although my preference is for French slate clocks. We have, in fact, clocks of many other kinds around the house, mostly antique but luckily not wound up or there's a cacophony on the hour and half hour. Seth Thomas is my partner's favourite clockmaker. The photos are his, the one above he sold and the one below is the newest acquired awaiting restoration. No pretty picture to show with it yet as the painted urn and flower arrangement is cracked.

3 comments:

Jessica L. Foster said...

Those are pretty clocks. It was great to learn about Seth Thomas. Thanks for posting.

Lucy Adams said...

Does having so many clocks make one on time? Or give one the feeling that she is racing time? Or does one perhaps have time on her hands?

DayDreamer said...

Thanks Jessica, the second one will be pretty once restored. I just couldn't find any photos of ones we have with the painted glass attached.

Lucy, you made me laugh with that :)
We have so many clocks but only a few are wound up, and I set them all 5 minutes fast.