Connecticut was home to multiple clockmaking companies in the 19th century, such as Ingraham, the William L. Gilbert Clock Company, Seth Thomas, Waterbury Clock Company, and, of course, Ansonia.

The Ansonia Clock Company’s roots lie in the Ansonia Brass Company, founded by Anson Greene Phelps in 1844. Phelps supplied brass to Connecticut clock manufacturers until 1851, when he joined forces with two powerful clockmakers, Theodore Terry and Franklin C. Andrews, to create a clockmaking company of his own. Terry and Andrews, who had a successful clockmaking business in Bristol, sold half of their business to Phelps in exchange for cheaper brass materials. Thus, the Ansonia Clock Company subsidiary was born.

Many Ansonia clocks are eight-day movements, meaning that they only need to be rewound every eight days. However, in 1875, the company developed a 30-hour, spring-driven illuminated alarm clock with a walnut veneer case. The alarm triggered a match to ignite a wick, which illuminated the clock.

Ansonia’s extensive line of clocks included mantel clocks with elaborately painted china cases, beehive shelf clocks, miniature ogee shelf clocks with alarms, shelf clocks with glass domes surrounding the clock’s head, and regulator clocks like the 1886 "General" model, a brass 8-day, weight-driven clock with a cherry case and a dial that counted the seconds. Ansonia was also well-known for its novelty items, such as swinging clocks that featured sculpted figurines.

In July 1853, Ansonia showcased its cast-iron clocks, painted and decorated with mother-of-pearl, at the New York World’s Fair. It was one of three Connecticut clockmaking companies to exhibit at the Fair.

In the 1870s, the Ansonia Clock Company separated from the Ansonia Brass Company and moved part of its production to New York. Although the company continued to produce clocks in Connecticut, the New York factory, with clockmaker Henry J. Davies at the helm, employed more than twice as many workers—the majority of clocks produced from approximately 1880 on are marked "New York."

The Ansonia Clock Company experienced disaster in 1880 when its New York factory caught fire, causing $750,000 in damages. However, the factory was rebuilt at the same location a...

In addition to clocks, Ansonia began producing inexpensive, non-jeweled wristwatches in 1904. Production peaked 1914, when Ansonia was turning out 440 different models of clocks, but by 1920, that number had dropped to less than 140, and by 1927, it was under 50. In 1929, Ansonia was sold to Amtorg Trading Corporation, the Soviet Union’s U.S. trading company, but in 1969, the rights to the Ansonia name and trademarks were acquired by Ansonia Clock Co., Inc. of Lynnwood, Washington.

Key Terms for Antique Ansonia Clocks:

Ogee clock: Rectangular clock with ogee molding, which forms an S-shaped curve; the door underneath the face of the clock is often painted.

About our sources | Got something to add?

▼ Expand to read the full article ▼

Best of the Web (“Hall of Fame”)

Antique Ansonia Clocks

Antique Ansonia Clocks

In addition to a detailed timeline and history of the Ansonia Clock Company, this site boasts a database of photos … [read review or visit site]

National Watch and Clock Museum

National Watch and Clock Museum

This virtual museum, created by the National Association of Watch and Clock Collectors, lets you stroll through tim… [read review or visit site]

Bill Stoddard's clock history site offers a trove of great reference information on clock and watch makers includin… [read review or visit site]

National Maritime Museum

National Maritime Museum

Check out this sampling of nautical and maritime items held by the U.K.'s National Maritime Museum and Royal Observ… [read review or visit site]

Dan and Diana's Lux Clock Collection

Dan and Diana's Lux Clock Collection

Dan and Diana Lockett's amazing collection of several hundred novelty Lux clocks made by the Lux Clock Manufacturin… [read review or visit site]

Detex Watchman's Clock Album

Detex Watchman's Clock Album

Philip Haselton's guide to watchmen's time recording equipment. Includes 19th century German portables, 20th centur… [read review or visit site]

Clubs & Associations

Discussion Forums

Other Great Reference Sites

Most watched eBay auctions    

Ansonia Clock Co. Mirror Side Walnut Parlor Clock ProjectHuge Antique Brass Cased Art Deco Mantle Clock Yachts & Birds Ansonia Usa1882 Ansonia Mcbeth Statue Clock With Visible Escapement & Porcelain DialRare Ansonia Antique 1894 Oak Cabinet F Mantle Clock Brass Trimmings #851Old Antique 8 Day Ansonia "queen Elizabeth" Wall Clock P. Orr & SonsAntique Ansonia Clock Movement Royal Bonn La Bretagne 13.5” Porcelain Case #bl76H.j. Davies Alarm Clock "ansonia" Runs Antique Collectible Ansonia "sappho" Statue/ Chime/ Mantle Clock ~rare!!~ Running & Striking ~ No ReAnsonia Locomotive Clock For RestorationAntique Ansonia Statue ClockAntique Ansonia "ormonde" Enameled Iron Mantle Clock Running ConditionRare Vintage Ansonia Clock Co. Antique Mantle Clock All Original.Ansonia Clock Company Antique Victorian Mantle Clock Mercury Hermes 17"x15"x7"Vintage Antique Ansonia Figural Mantle Clocks For Parts Or RestorationCirca Late 1880's Ansonia Mantle Clock Antique Ansonia 1874 Rare "parisian" Restored Oak Parlor Shelf Clock Working Antioue Ansonia Shelf Clock PotmetalAntique Ansonia B25 Humpback Tambour Mantel Shelf Clock W Pendulum-working RepaiAnsonia Marble Case Mantle Clock With Visible EscapementAntique Ansonia Clock Company Mantle Clock, Patented June 18th 1882. 19c Ansonia "gingerbread" 8 Day Striking Clock - Running W KeyAntique Ansonia Royal Bonn La Hay Porcelain Clock Shelf MantelAnsonia Cast Iron Mantle Clock Circa 1882Antique Ansonia 1894 Rare "aden" Black Walnut Parlor Shelf Clock Working WellAnsonia Chime Wall Clock With Beveled/frosted GlassAntique Ansonia (marked) Figural Spelter Clock Topper Soldier; Very Nice!Antique Ansonia Cast Iron Porcelain Mantel Clock Dial Bezel Parts RepairAntique Ansonia Cast Iron Mantel Clock Case Parts Repair16 Wall Kitchen Clock Keys Ingraham Gilbert Ansonia New Haven WaterburyOld Antique Ansonia Mantle Shelf Clock Dial / Bezel Clock Parts Antique Ansonia Mantel Clock Pendulum & Key Parts Repair3 Ansonia Clock PendulumsOld Ansonia Mantle Shelf Clock Adjustable Pendulum Clock PartsAnsonia "gem" Inkwell Calendar Calendar Clock-c. 1890Antique Ansonia Clock Co Face And PendulumOld Antique Ansonia Westminster Mantle Shelf Dial / Bezel Glass Clock PartsAntique Ansonia Mantel Clock PendulumEarly Antique Ansonia Manual Wind Clock W/ornate Metal Case~lot #1! Nr!Ansonia, Gilbert, Waterbury, Ingraham, Session Wall, Kitchen, Mantle Clock KeyAntique Pocket Watch By The Ansonia Clock Co 1888 New York Old Antique Ansonia Mantle Shelf Clock Porcelain Dial Clock PartsOld 1800s Ansonia Regulator School House Wall Cock Movement Clock PartsOld Antique Smaller Sized Ansonia Mantle Shelf Clock Movement Parts