This bracket clock has pride of place in the Long Room of our Library. It has not worked for many years, but has been restored for us by Matthew McMurray of the Devizes Clock Workshop. The Westminster Chimes are now a welcome sound in the Museum - listen to a recording below. Matthew has written a detailed article about the clock and its restoration which you can read here. Below is an extract. We are grateful to Matthew for his painstaking restoration.
The bracket clock was made by Winterhalder and Hofmeier in the late 19th century. The company was founded in 1810 in the Black Forest region of Germany and had a reputation for building high quality clocks, most of which were exported to the UK and America. They were in part responsible for the decline of the British clockmaking industry, the German companies able to mass produce good quality clocks at a competitive price that individual British clock makers could not match.
This particular clock is a mid range model. It is in a simple mahogany veneered break arch top case with brass scroll feet and two small brass finials. It has a dead beat escapement, three trains and strikes Westminster chimes on five blued steel coiled gongs. It has a silvered chapter ring dial with matted brass centre, and blued steel hands, with gilt brass decorative corner spandrels. It also has two subsidiary dials in the arch, that on the left for fast/slow pendulum regulation and that on the right to silence the chimes.
This clock bears a small plaque inscribed
'ERNEST SANDELL FROM THE BOYS DEVIZES 16th Sept 1905'.
The clock was part of a bequest from Richard Sandell who was Honorary librarian at the Wiltshire Museum from 1956 until his death in 1979. Ernest was his father and the clock was a gift from his work colleagues, when he was bought out of his partnership with Daniel Offer in their Corn Merchant company, which traded as D A Offer and Co. from 37 New Park St. Devizes.