Coca-Cola began advertising its products on clocks in 1893, when such novelty advertisements were increasingly common. Coke would distribute branded clocks to sellers who bought and sold at least 100 gallons of Coca-Cola syrup per year.

The first Coca-Cola clocks were made by the Baird Clock Company of Plattsburgh, New York, and had big, round faces with Roman numerals. The first ones were generally blue rather than red, and they measured about two feet tall. Unlike the electric clocks that were to follow several decades later, they were key-wound.

At $2.75 each, clocks were relatively expensive to produce, but Coca-Cola made the investment knowing that, because of their usefulness, advertising clocks would stay on display in a store long after posters or other items had been discarded.

These early Coca-Cola clocks often bore slogans like “The Ideal Brain Tonic,” or “Delicious, Refreshing, Relieves Exhaustion.” Soon, however, simpler slogans like “Drink Coca-Cola” and “Delicious, Refreshing” became standard. Because these statements were more generic, they also helped prevent the clocks from becoming outdated or irrelevant.

In 1900, Coca-Cola switched to schoolhouse clocks, which were manufactured by companies like Welch Manufacturing. These clocks had octagonal faces, were pendulum-driven, and featured ornate engravings on their wood cases.

Five years later, schoolhouse clocks gave way to large, rectangular regulator clocks. These often had the same type of face as the schoolhouse clocks but had two panels on them—a top panel with the clock itself and a bottom panel with an illustration. One example, from 1911, has been nicknamed the “Gibson Girl” clock because its illustration of a girl in the bottom panel that resembles the artwork of the illustrator Charles Dana Gibson. In addition to these wall clocks, Coke distributed clocks meant to be displayed on the top of a store’s cash register.

Around the same time, until about 1920, Coca-Cola also produced small table and desk clocks for the home. Some of these were wind-up clocks and sported leather casing and gold-st...

In the 1930s, and especially after World War II, Coke switched from pendulum clocks to cheaper, more reliable electric clocks. On these clocks, the Coke logo was placed either on the actual face of the clock or on the glass over the face. These clocks were made of wood and metal at first, but by the 1950s, plastic was more common. These later clocks were generally not dated and were produced by a variety of manufacturers, so collectors must rely on slogans, designs, and materials to identify the year or decade in which a clock was produced.

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]

Coca-Cola Collectibles

Coca-Cola Collectibles

The Collectibles page of the official Coca-Cola website features photos and videos on bottles, signs, advertising, … [read review or visit site]

Bobbys Coca-Cola on the Web

Bobbys Coca-Cola on the Web

This site, a group effort, is a great reference for Coca-Cola collectors. Start with the timeline and product lists… [read review or visit site]

Clockhistory.com

Clockhistory.com

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]

Falvo Collectables Gallery

Falvo Collectables Gallery

Ralph and Carol Falvo's excellent collection of automobiles, petroliana, jukeboxes, soda, and general store items. … [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]

Soda-Machines.com

Soda-Machines.com

The ultimate guide to vintage soda vending machines, from Coca-Cola to Pepsi to Royal Crown to Dr. Pepper. Start at… [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    

1950s Swihart Coca Cola Rocking Bottle Clock Animated Motion SignAntique Coca Cola Fishtail 1940 S Bubble Glass Clock Very Rare ClockVintage 1948 Coca Cola Neon Clock, Coke Lackner, Bottle In The Sun, Vintage HtfEmbossed Fishtail Drink Ice Cold Coca Cola Arrow Sign Bottle Coke Soda Mobil Vintage 1950's Drink Coca Cola Fishtail Logo Lighted Advertising Wall Clock SignStp Metal Sign Racing Oil Pennzoil Fuel Pump Garage Camaro Parts Man Cave Ford Smokey Pig Bar'b-q Sign Embossed Metal Vintage Look Garage Gas Oil Rat Rod Cafe Coca~cola "danbury Mint" Vhtf "light Up Diner Clock" 2000 Lim.ed. Rare~un-used !Rules For Dating Metal Embossed Vintage Look Garage Gas Oil Ford Chevy Dad'sEmbossed Fishtail Drink Ice Cold Coca Cola Arrow Sign Bottle Coke Soda Mobil Embossed Fishtail Drink Ice Cold Coca Cola Arrow Sign Bottle Coke Soda Mobil Fender Strartocaster The Spirit Of Rock And Roll Born 1954 Sunburst Guitar SignCoca-cola "danbury Mint" 40's Light-up Soda Fountain Clock Lim.ed. Rare Un-usedVintage Advertising Coca Cola Electric Wall Clock Hamburger Embossed Metal Sign 50's Diner Coca Cola Popeye TheaterDodge Guts Glory Metal Sign Garage Tools Gto Lemans Tempest Judge Man Cave Embossed Fishtail Drink Ice Cold Coca Cola Arrow Sign Bottle Coke Soda Mobil "crazy Cat Lady" Looney Tunes Sign Embossed Metal Tv Cartoon Vintage Look SodaMopar Parts And Accessories Wooden Canvas Art Man Cave Dodge Hemi 6.2 Hellcat Vintage Gas Station Desk Ornament Route 66 Texaco Motor Oil Man Cave Shop Store Super Beetle Metal Sign Vintage Look Garage Tools Gto Lemans Tempest Judge1950's Original Coca Cola Chocolate ClockWarning Bigfoot Area Sign Rat Rod Metal Vintage Look Garage Rat FinkCoke-cola ClockVintage Gas Station Desk Ornament Route 66 Texaco Motor Oil Man Cave Shop Store Coca Cola Can ClockEnjoy Coca-cola Electric Illuminated Wall ClockCoke Vintage Burwood Coca-cola "family Drive In" Clock NibI Love My Sugar Daddy Sign Candy Shop Original Vintage Look Cinema Candy Crush The Good Gulf Gasoline Sign Vintage Look Garage Tools Gto Lemans Tempest JudgeMore Fun Than A Barrel Of Monkeys" Sign Embossed Metal Vintage Look Arcade GamePure Elvis Jukebox Metal Sign 50's Style Diner Cafe 3d Drive-in Teddy Bear Vintage Coca Cola Clock Ridan 70's ? Electric Lighted Model (needs Bulb) Works Corvette North Interstate 61 1961 Huge Metal Sign Man Cave Garage Shop Store Embossed Fishtail Drink Ice Cold Coca Cola Arrow Sign Bottle Coke Soda Mobil Coca Cola Coke 1950's Diner Ice Cream Parlor Soda Fountain Scene Wall ClockConoco Gas Triangle Metal Sign Vintage Look Gas Oil Phillips 66 Oil Can Rack Coca Cola Wall Clock, Metal Case, Glass Lens, Quartz Accuracy, NibCoca Cola Bear And Coke Machine With Clock In The Middle Dated 20011994 Coca Cola Mirrored Wall Clock "coca Cola Corner"Coca Cola Delivery Man With Cases Of Coke - With Mini Clock - UniqueVintage Coca-cola Clock 3d Soda Fountain Factory Sealed New In Box Never Used Stp Metal Sign Racing Oil Pennzoil Fuel Pump Garage Camaro Parts Man Cave Ford Vintage 50's Family Drive-in Clock And Street Rods With Coca-cola Sign Oem Ford Mustang Gt Metal Sign 1965 Shelby Coupe P-51 Mustang 1966 Pony Emblem1950's Coca Cola Ice Cream Shop 3d Wall Clock Home Decor Kitchen Bedroom Wall Clock Coca Cola Soda Fountain Vintage 1992 Coca Cola Co. Soda Fountain Clock Jukebox SodaVintage Coca Cola Digital Clock And Coin BankVintage Advertisement Drink Coca Cola Seth Thomas Electric Wall Clock 13-1/2"usa Coca Cola Gas Station Wall ClockVintage Coca Cola Wall Clock Retro Coke Car Gas Station And Car Repair - Working