Here’s what a $12 auction clock looks like

I am a bit of a sucker for cottage clocks, have several of them, most are 1 day but I find them interesting just the same. There are not many survivors for a good reason. They were the cheapest clocks one could buy and when they stopped working they were either thrown away or repaired by some local clock fellow to get a few more years out of them. I am not on a quest to obtain the most inexpensive clock possible but this little cottage clock was tacked onto several items bought on an online auction.

“You won the clock”, my wife said. “What clock?”. “You know, the cottage clock”. “Oh, that one!”

Well, here it is.

Jerome & Co cottage clock

Pretty rough! An initial inspection reveals losses on the dial, missing veneer here and there, losses on the reverse painted tablet on the lower section of the access door, gold trim that has long worn off, and a movement that has had strange things done to it.

1 Day movement

It is a time-only clock that runs for 30 hours, otherwise called a 1-day clock. It was made by Jerome & Co., a subsidiary of the New Haven Clock Co., and has no connection to Chauncey Jerome himself. Chauncey Jerome’s interests were sold off to New Haven by the mid-1850s.

The copper wire soldered to the brass plate next to the escape wheel (photo above) is an improvised bushing. I have seen a lot of interesting repairs over the years but this is different. A few other issues. The plate pins are finishing nails and one pin in the back of the movement is a toothpick! Plus, it has been sprayed with what looks like WD-40.

Like most mechanical clocks, they can be correctly repaired and brought back to life. As to the case? I will have to give it some thought.

Jerome & Co, Rose cottage

When this Jerome & Co 1-day clock was made is a mystery but the solid wheel in the upper right rear of the movement tells me that this clock may be from the 1850s or 1860s.

It’s a $12 clock. What would you do with it?

I have some ideas. Stay tuned.

One thought on “Here’s what a $12 auction clock looks like

  1. As a regular follower of your blog, I suspect you won’t be able to resist the allure of the challenge, despite the fact that the value of the clock once restored will never repay the hours you spend doing it. As they say, the pleasure is in the journey.

    How will you cope with the flaking paint on the dial plate and the missing shaped veneer on the case? I have a couple of auction-bought steeple clocks in similar states of disrepair. I am always happy sorting the movements, less confident about the cases.

    Keep posting – always a great read!

    Hugh –


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