STYLE: The MESDA research staff has recorded several sundials, tall-case clocks, and transits made by Chandlee including a sundial of the same style (2397.2) that was previously on loan to MESDA and one currently in the MESDA collection (4144).
MAKER: Goldsmith Chandlee (1751-1821) was born in Nottingham, Maryland, a border town which at the time of his birth was in Pennsylvania but was resurveyed and assigned to Maryland in 1768. The Chandlee family were prominent Quaker clock and scientific instrument makers including Goldsmith’s father, Benjamin Chandlee Jr. (1723-1791) and brothers Ellis (1755-1816) and Isaac (1760-1813). Goldsmith Chandlee’s son, Benjamin Chandlee III (1780-1822) also became a clock and scientific instrument maker. Goldsmith Chandlee was recorded as a silversmith in Winchester by 1779 when he took two apprentices. In 1801 and 1808 he took two more apprentices to learn watch and clockmaking. Chandlee apparently did not advertise except on his watchpapers and actual work, which indicates that he was a successful artisan. His work was exported as far as Baltimore, for in 1807 Abraham Patton and Samuel Jones announced in that city that they had just recieved “Surveyors’ compasses AND CHAINS, Complete, made by Goldsmith Chandlee, Winchester Virginia, warranted equal in quality to any ever offered for sale in Baltimore, at the Manufacturer’s prices.”