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Gibraltar Kitchen Clock

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beautiful design42 of 43Rail road Map1930's Elgin
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Posted 2 years ago

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Hunter
(35 items)

My other Brimfield purchase was this mustard-colored kitchen/school/office clock by Gibraltar, which is exactly what I was hoping to find for our vintage kitchen clock spot. In addition to a stove that dates to the 50s, my apartment's semi-updated kitchen includes an old wall socket mounted at clock level, along with a little hook to hang your timepiece on. This guy fits perfectly, and matches our yellow cabinet as well. I especially love the crescent-tipped second hand.

It was apparently made by the Gibraltar Manufacturing company out of Jersey City, New Jersey, on March 2nd, 1961 (see rear image). The company seems to have been incorporated in 1926 and sold clocks under a few different names: http://uv201.com/Clock_Pages/gibraltar_clocks.htm

Does anyone know anything else about this company? I could only find a couple other image of Gibraltar-branded clocks on the web, and would love to know more about the company that made them...

Comments

  1. Bruce99 Bruce99, 2 years ago
    Scant information, as you know, online about this company. You might try contacting the public library in Jersey City. They do have one book on clocks and watches in New Jersey. Perhaps they would be willing to help you directly or point you in the right direction.

    See: http://catalog.jclibrary.org/uhtbin/cgisirsi.exe/BHvVLMMgmI/MAIN/308740005/8/594561/Clocks+and+watches--New+Jersey.

    Good luck.
  2. Hunter Hunter, 2 years ago
    Thanks Bellin for the kind words, and Bruce for the tipoff to the Jersey City Library - great idea! I'll see what they can come up with :)

    Thanks Manikin and olegaclockman for the love!
  3. Bruce99 Bruce99, 2 years ago
    Please let us know if you come up with any good info!

    This looks like the perfect clock for your kitchen. These old plug in clocks are still largely mechanical devices and as such they do require periodic maintenance.

    There's a clock shop which specializes in servicing vintage plug-in clocks near L.A. Check out: http://www.atmos-man.com/rotor.html

    You can also search the member business directory for shops closer to your location. See: http://www.nawcc.org/index.php/business-directory

    Enjoy!
  4. Hunter Hunter, 2 years ago
    Awesome - thanks again for the helpful resources Bruce. I'll definitely let you guy know what I find out...
  5. Manikin Manikin, 2 years ago
    PS Love love your Vintage yellow table against blue walls very Nice !
  6. Hunter Hunter, 2 years ago
    Thanks Manikin - all my roommate's doing, he's got good color sense :)

    And thanks clockerman for the love!
  7. Hunter Hunter, 2 years ago
    thanks walksoftly :)
  8. walksoftly walksoftly, 2 years ago
    Nice clock, reminds me of the red one my parents got for a wedding present it ran for over fifty years, it now hangs in my niece's kitchen as a decorative piece.
    Love the cabinet too.
  9. Hunter Hunter, 2 years ago
    thanks for the nice comment walksoftly - I feel like these clocks used to be everywhere in businesses, schools, kitchens, etc. but you just don't see them as often anymore.
  10. Hunter Hunter, 2 years ago
    thanks michele & elayem0110 for the <3
  11. Hunter Hunter, 2 years ago
    Hi all! At Bruce's suggestion, I contacted the Jersey City library, and although the book on clock & watch makers in NJ had nothing on Gibraltar, a very helpful librarian there put together some information for me using the state's industrial directories! My confidence in the American Public Library system is restored.

    Here is his report:

    From sometime between 1931 and 1934 through 1965, Gibraltar Mfg. Co. was located at 403 Communipaw Ave. at the corner of Woodward. They were mostly manufacturers of watches and clocks, but for a time in the late 40s and 50s they also made lamps, tables, and display cases. You will likely have found in your web searching that they also made toy sewing machines under the Betsy Ross name in that era. In 1966 they company moved to South Plainfield, where it lasted only until 1971. For every year that the directories have one listed, J. Gottlieb is the President and often has another office as well. You may have found patents relating to the company on which the name Joseph Gottlieb appears; it would seem to be that it was “his” company.

    That factory on Communipaw and Woodward was previously the New York Standard Watch Company, later part of Keystone Watch Company, but the latter had moved away from Jersey City prior to the 1930s. You will have probably found this web page: http://uv201.com/Clock_Pages/gibraltar_clocks.htm - which is not flattering on the design of the clocks, but it is not too much of a stretch to imagine Gottlieb – there is a J Gottlieb who is listed as a metal worker in the 1925 Jersey City directory – finding success with low-end manufacturing that could succeed during the depression years, after taking possession of a disused clock factory. Beauty is a matter of opinion, perhaps. In 1934 Gibraltar was employing 35 men and 35 women, by 1943 that was up to 185 men and 100 women. Gottlieb apparently did rather well for his labor – the home address on one of his patents is Deal, NJ, a very upscale shore community (Jersey City’s powerful long-term mayor Frank Hague also had a home there).
  12. Bruce99 Bruce99, 2 years ago
    Hey Hunter!

    What a great story behind your period Gibralter "Kitchen" Clock, and what a fantastic Librarian! Thanks again for sharing your clock and the information that you discovered through your research. :)

    Regards,

    Bruce
  13. Hunter Hunter, 2 years ago
    Anytime Bruce ;)
  14. happytobehere happytobehere, 2 years ago
    Nice clock!!
  15. Hunter Hunter, 2 years ago
    thanks eye4beauty and happytobehere for the comments :)
  16. joanna joanna, 2 years ago
    fab find!
  17. Hunter Hunter, 2 years ago
    thanks Joanna! :)

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