LiveAuctioneers.com will proviede Internet live bidding for the cataloged session, which begins at 11 a.m. Eastern.
Session two, a discovery session, will follow and have an additional 100 or so lots, also of vintage and antique clocks.
“Any serious collector will agree, having three E. Howard astronomical regulators in one sale is unusual judging by there rarity,” said John Fontaine of Fontaine’s Auction Gallery. “Add to that the two R.J. Horner grandfather clocks, plus a wide assortment of rare and beautiful other clocks, and you’ve got the makings of a significant clock auction.”
The day will be packed with examples from Seth Thomas, Ansonia, Ithaca, Elmer O. Stennes, Foster Campos, Chelsea, Atkins, Walter Durfee, J.J. Elliot, Waltham, William Gilbert, F. Kroeber, New Haven, Waterbury, Eli Terry, E.N. Welch, E. Ingraham, Tiffany & Co., Sessions and Lecoultre. There will also be French silk thread clocks, industrial clocks, mystery clocks, annular and animated clocks, English fusee, animated bird boxes and barometers.
The three Howards, though, are expected to headline the sale. Fontaine’s Auction Gallery is no stranger to E. Howard regulators. Last November, the firm sold an E. Howard & Co. astronomical regulator No. 46 clock in fine condition, for a staggering (and record) $230,100.
The E. Howard No. 68 regulator will be joined by a No. 25 drumhead regulator (est. $60,000-$80,000), a No. 74 astronomical regulator (est. $30,000-$40,000), and, for folks on an E. Howard budget, a No. 7 figure 8 regulator (est. $12,000-$15,000). But only the No. 68 is expected reach or exceed the $100,000 mark – unless, of course, bidding wars break out over the others.
The No. 68 is a floor-standing astronomical regulator, impressive at 105 inches tall and boasting excellent color and patina. The silvered 14-inch bronze dial is signed “E. Howard & Co., Boston, Mass.” Same with the quality brass eight-day, two-weight time-only astronomical movement. The large walnut case is nicely carved and the glass on the door and sides is original.
The E. Howard No. 25 drumhead astronomical regulator is in excellent condition, with the original finish. The carved walnut No. 25 case, 75 inches tall, has a round “drumhead” top. The 14-inch silvered bronze astronomical dial is E. Howard-signed, and the clock has a quality brass 90-day, weight-driven, time-only astronomical movement with deadbeat escapement.
The Howard No. 74 astronomical observatory regulator is 60 inches tall, with a case that has an iron back, cast in one piece, on which the movement bracket and mahogany case front are mounted. The 12-inch silvered bronze astronomical dial is E. Howard-signed and numbered 305. The weight-driven movement has Graham deadbeat escapement with jeweled pallets and a clustered four-jar mercurial pendulum.
The Howard No. 7 figure-eight regulator is 50 inches high and housed in a refinished walnut case with carved crests, reverse painted throat and lower glasses and black painted weight baffle. The 12-inch painted metal dial has black Roman hour numerals, blued open-moon hands and a dial that’s signed “E. Howard & Co., Boston.” The dial has in-painting and a varnished overcoat.
Of the two R.J. Horner grandfather clocks being offered, the one expected to command higher dollars is a carved mahogany nine-tube grandfather clock in good original condition with the original finish (est. $40,000-$60,000). The brass dial has a 12-inch silvered chapter ring with engraved decorations, while the case is beautifully carved, with winged griffins and figural busts.
The other grandfather clock, also with a walnut case attributed to R.J. Horner, is 105 inches tall and in good running condition (est. $15,000-$20,000). It is signed “Tiffany & Co.” on a silvered plaque and the quality brass movement strikes on five silvered tubes are signed “Walter H. Durfee.” The body features winged griffins, carved lions’ heads and figural putti.
An astronomical regulator attributed to the U.S. Clock Co., 112 inches tall and in good overall condition, in the original finish and housed in a large carved walnut case with fine pediment crest and large turned finials, should hit $15,000-$30,000; and one of the best examples of an inlaid rosewood Vienna regulator, 73 inches tall, with inset porcelain dial having black Roman numerals, with a dial signed “Jacob Weber,” should breeze to $20,000-$25,000.
Three clocks have identical estimates of $12,000-$15,000. The first one is a Herschedes pattern 140 mahogany nine-tube grandfather clock, 106 inches tall, with blued pierced hands, silvered chapter ring and applied brass Arabic numbers, in an elaborately carved case. The second one is a French figural Three Graces annular clock on a white marble base having a fluted pedestal topped with an urn, dore bronze handles and trim, standing 26 inches tall.
The third is a Gothic triple fusee Whittington chime and bell skeleton clock, 23 inches tall, with two large cathedral-shaped plates and a drop hammer strike on a nest of eight bells with quarter-hour progressive Whittington strike, signed “Bennett, London” on a metal tag, perched on a white marble base. Also being sold is a Kroeber No. 25 hanging pinwheel jewelers regulator with a 12-inch porcelain dial having black Roman numerals, 98 inches tall (est. $8,000-$12,000).
Rounding out just a few of the day’s expected top lots are a mahogany and ormolu swinging portico clock, 22 inches tall, with the movement signed “Bechot” and the dial signed “Gittion a Paris”, in a portico-style case with turned tapered columns and bronze ormolu mounts and capitols (est. $8,000-$12,000); and an Ansel Turner mahogany tall-case clock, 90 inches tall, with original painted metal dial and moon phase with painted sailing ships (est. $8,000-$12,000).
For details call 413-448-8922 and ask for John Fontaine, or e-mail him at firstname.lastname@example.org.
ADDITIONAL LOTS OF NOTE