Founded in 1853, the New Haven Clock Company was the first to mass-produce brass clock movements in America. The company was formed to supply these movements to the Jerome Manufacturing Company, then the largest clockmaker in the world. When Jerome went bankrupt in 1856, New Haven Clock Company purchased it.

One of the primary benefits of the Jerome purchase for New Haven was the good reputation of the Jerome brand and the network of companies that remained interested in selling its clocks. In England, Jerome & Co. Ltd. sold Jerome clocks for New Haven until 1904, when New Haven purchased the English firm outright.

Among the Jerome clocks that New Haven produced for export was an 1860 mantel clock called the Duchess. It had a rosewood veneer case, an angled top, Roman-numeral letters on its dial, and a glass window to reveal the swinging pendulum inside.

Double-dial calendar clocks, for walls and shelves, were also popular. Some had light oak cases, some were made of rich walnut, and still others were produced by New Haven for the National Calendar Clock Company. One of these has three finials on top and is especially sought by collectors of antique New Haven clocks thanks to the word "Fashion" emblazoned between the two dials (Fashion was a popular magazine of the day; Seth Thomas and others also made these so-called Fashion clocks).

Perhaps the most collectible of the late 19th-century New Haven clocks is the Ignatz, or flying pendulum shelf clock, from 1884. Instead of a lever, anchor, recoil, or other traditional type of escapement, the flying pendulum had a ball-and-string "tetherball" escapement that whipped from side to side on the top of the clock’s case. New Haven produced them as Jerome & Co. clocks, but only for about a year.

New Haven made hundreds of other models, from banjo clocks to regulators to grandfathers, with names like Anglo, English, Glenor, and Occidental. In 1880, they even added a line of non-jeweled pocket watches.

But mismanagement plagued the otherwise successful company. After flirting with bankruptcy in 1894, New Haven pulled itself together in 1902 when Walter C. Camp, who was then kno...

The changes Camp instituted were enough to keep the company profitable through the Depression, but after World War II, the company struggled through disruption caused by a takeover and poor sales, finally folding operations in 1960, a little more than 100 years after it had been founded.

Key terms for Antique New Haven Clocks:

Escapement: A device that converts the pressure of a spring or coil into a fixed release of movement.

About our sources | Got something to add?

▼ Expand to read the full article ▼

Best of the Web (“Hall of Fame”)

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    

Beautiful Striking New Haven Carved Wall Clock Circa 1885Antique 1879 New Haven Oak Gingerbread Clock Embossed Eagle Pendulum Nr YqzAntique New Haven Westminster Mantle ClockAntique New Haven Steeple Shelf Mantel Clock W/ Alarm, Reverse Painted GlassVintage 1941 New Haven Westminster Romany Electric Tambour Mantel Clock WorkingOriginal '57 Chevy Chevrolet Dash Clock Restored & Works GreatNew Haven 8 Day Parlor Mantel Clock Beautiful 1881 Looks & Runs Great!Antique New Haven San Martin Mission Clock Cut-out Mantel Shelf Wall 8 Day RunsNew Haven Cast Iron & Gilt Ormolu Mantel Clock / Time & Strike - Works New Haven 30 Day Signed Regulator Wall ClockAntique New Haven " Whitney" 8 Day Banjo Wall ClockVintage New Haven Car Auto Dash Mount Clock 1910-1920Old New Haven Ornate Small Miniature Clock Brass ? Enamel Dial As Is1879 New Haven 'rarus' Striking Alarm Parlor ClockAntique Clock,new Haven Clock, Parlor Wall Clock,running,parlor ClockAntique New Haven #62 Mantel Mission Gong 8 Day Clock Oak Working Key Art CraftVintage New Haven Art Deco Wood Cigarette Dispensing Windup Clock WorksExcellent Antique New Haven Newhaven Hand Painted White Porcelain Shelf ClockNice Old New Haven Clock Movement8 Antique Vintage Alarm Clocks Gilbert Lux Apollo Ingraham New Haven WestcloxOriginal New Haven Clock Crystal Regulator Movement Parts  Antique, New Haven Antique Wind Up Clock, Cherub Playing Guitar, Small, MetalAntique New Haven Steel Clock Marble Design * Keeps Great Time * Very NiceAntique New Haven Junior Tattoo Movement Alarm Clock Patent Dated April 5, 1904Antique New Haven Mantle Clock MovementAntique New Haven Black Mantel Clock For Parts Or RepairVintage New Haven Mid Century Gothic Black Starburst Hanging Wall ClockVintage Burwood New Haven Wall Clock - 1982 - Works FineNew Haven Double End Mantle Shelf Clock Key Parts NosNew Haven Mantle Shelf Clock Key Size 6 Parts Nos