The Waterbury Clock Company, one of many 19th century Connecticut-based clock firms, began as a subsidiary of Benedict & Burnham, a brass manufacturing company, in 1857. Benedict & Burnham had no background in clock making, but it saw clocks as a means to use its brass. Over the years, Waterbury would become a leading manufacturer of clocks—by the time it closed its doors in 1944, it had made some of the most memorable American antique wall clocks and mantel clocks, as well as highly regarded clock movements and watches.

Because of Waterbury’s roots in brass, the metal played a large role in the design of its clocks, but during its first few years, the firm lacked an experienced clock maker and designer. Enter Chauncey Jerome and his brother, Noble. Until they arrived, most of Waterbury’s business had been in the sale of movements and cases for clocks made elsewhere. Under the direction of the Jerome brothers, however, Waterbury’s production grew rapidly, necessitating the building of a new production facility in 1873 for its growing number of products.

In the 1880s and early 1890s, Waterbury added non-jeweled pocket watches to its product line. In the final decade of the 19th century, Waterbury was producing upwards of 20,000 clocks and watches a day, and was selling its output through Sears, Roebuck & Company and other retailers. By 1915, Waterbury was making more clocks than any company in the United States.

Throughout this period, Waterbury maintained a relationship with R.H. Ingersoll & Brother, a mail-order company. When Ingersoll fell on hard times in 1922 Waterbury bought the company—the combined firm was later renamed as the Ingersoll-Waterbury Company.

Waterbury was not immune to the effects of the Great Depression, but it managed to stay afloat with the production of the Mickey Mouse wristwatch, which was a huge hit. In addition, Waterbury embraced changing technology and began producing electric clocks in 1932.

As many companies did during World War II, Waterbury shifted gears during the first half of the 1940s to support the war effort. During this period, in 1942, Ingersoll-Waterbury was purchased by a group of Norwegians, who built a new factory for their firm in Waterbury, Connecticut. They also changed the company’s name to the United States Time Corporation, the forerunner of Timex.


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Recent News: Waterbury Clocks

Source: Google News

The View From Swamptown: Daniel Eldred Updike home: From family house to mixed use
The Independent, April 7th

furniture knobs and copper wire and seamless tubing; and president of Waterbury Button Company, Waterbury Clock Company, and the American Pin Company, as well as a director of American Mutual Insurance and the New York City Mercantile Bank...Read more

History of radiation explained in intriguing book
NJ.com, April 3rd

She was a factory worker in the watch-making industry, and her employer was the Waterbury Clock Company." He writes about how this uneducated, 17-year-old girl had what was an excellent job. Other young women, around her age, were doing similar jobs ...Read more

Redeveloping Waterbury's old factories
WTNH Connecticut News (press release), March 23rd

With the Waterbury clock tower looming, the parcel of blighted land on Freight Street is considered prime for its quick access to Interstate 84 and Route 8. Political leaders said its development is crucial to the city's future success. But so far...Read more

Testimony points to money as motive in Sharon murder case
Waterbury Republican American, January 8th

Bulls still cheering victory in national competition · Homes for a holiday · Stolen school trees found and paid forward · Waterbury man pleads guilty in steroid sales · 9-1 vote passes Naugatuck police contract · 3 charged with scaling Waterbury...Read more

Cornwall has new social services director
Waterbury Republican American, January 7th

Bulls still cheering victory in national competition · Homes for a holiday · Stolen school trees found and paid forward · Waterbury man pleads guilty in steroid sales · 9-1 vote passes Naugatuck police contract · 3 charged with scaling Waterbury...Read more

Timex Museum Prepares to Shut Its Doors
New York Times, September 17th

Wall texts explain how Timex, originally incorporated as the Waterbury Clock Company in the 1850s, adapted to changing tastes over the decades by ornamenting clocks and watches with images of dragons, elephants and Mickey Mouse and coming up with ...Read more

Workers Rappel To Inspect 240-Foot Waterbury Clock Tower
Hartford Courant, June 19th

Workers descend down the Republican-American's clock tower to investigate the condition of each face of the 240-foot-tall structure in Waterbury, Conn. Thursday June 18th 2015. The results of their inspection will be used to design repairs to the 109...Read more

Last Of Waterbury's Radium Girls Dies
Hartford Courant, March 3rd

Keane and her co-workers at Waterbury Clock Co., all young women, were told they could paint faster if they dipped their brushes into the radium-laden paint and then sharpened the bristles with their lips. But the paint was bitter and Keane would not...Read more