Collections › MESDA Collection › Tall Case Clock

Tall Case Clock

Thomas, Seth __Clockworks by ||Macy, Henry __Case by
Place Made:
Guilford County North Carolina United States of America
Date Made:
walnut –poplar
HOA 91-1/4″; WOA 20-1/4″ hood; DOA 11-3/4″ hood
Accession Number:
DESCRIPTION: Walnut and poplar tall case clock having an arched hood with dentils; angled cuts on dentils; waist having an arched door flanked by fluted quarter columns with bulging capitals; shaped ogee feet with base molding; wooden works.

CLOCK CASE: Henry Macy (1773-1846) was a Quaker cabinetmaker who lived in southern Guilford County whose surviving account documents numerous clock cases as part of his shop production. Macy’s clients were frequently fellow Quakers who also lived in southern Guilford and northern Randolph counties, and who attended Center Monthly Meeting. Macy was born in Nantucket, Massachusetts, but around 1785 he and his family migrated to Piedmont North Carolina. He appears to have trained under his cousin Hepsibeth Macy’s husband, Thomas Pierce, another Quaker cabinetmaker originally from Chester County, Pennsylvania.

CLOCKMAKER: Seth Thomas (1785 – 1859) was an American clockmaker and a pioneer of mass production at his Seth Thomas Clock Company. He was born in Wolcott, Connecticut, in 1785 and apprenticed as a carpenter and joiner and worked building houses and barns. He started in the clock business in 1807, working for clockmaker Eli Terry. Thomas formed a clock-making partnership in Plymouth, Connecticut, with Eli Terry and Silas Hoadley as Terry, Thomas & Hoadley. In 1810, he bought Terry’s clock business, making tall clocks with wooden movements, though chose to sell his partnership in 1812, moving in 1813 to Plymouth Hollow, Connecticut, where he set up a factory to make metal-movement clocks. In 1817, he added shelf and mantel clocks. By the mid-1840s, he changed over to brass from wooden movements. He made the clock that is used in Fireman’s Hall. He died in 1859, whereupon the company was taken over by his son, Aaron, who added many styles and improvements after his father’s death. The company went out of business in the 1980s.

Previously in the collection of Ron Sandone of Easton, CT.
Credit Line:
Promised gift of Mr. and Mrs. Lee French, Mr. and Mrs. Spencer Morten, Dr. and Mrs. William Bell