Fylfot Decorative Motifs

Fylfot Decorative Motifs

Fylfots are early design forms of the swastika. The design is frequently encountered in Pennsylvania Dutch decoration in a form that many say resembles a pinwheel. Never a widely used word, etymologists attribute the meaning to Middle English on the basis of one usage in a text from 1500. There, fylfot is used for the design because it was allegedly frequently used to “fill” the “foot” of a stained glass window [...] Click here to continue reading.


Willard, Simon Sr. & Simon Jr. – American Clockmakers

Simon Willard, Clockmaker

Simon Willard, born 3 April 1753, was the eighth child of Benjamin and Sarah Willard, descendents of Major Simon Willard, the founder of Concord, Massachusetts.

Among the famous Willard clockmaking sons, Simon was the second eldest brother among Benjamin, Ephraim and Aaron Willard. Simon worked in his hometown of Grafton until he moved to Roxbury, Massachusetts in the late 1770′s.

As a clockmaker, Simon was a prodigy who was making [...] Click here to continue reading.


Willard, Aaron Sr & Aaron Jr – American Clockmakers

Aaron Willard, Clockmaker

Aaron Willard, born 13 October 1757, was the tenth child of Benjamin and Sarah Willard, descendents of Major Simon Willard, the founder of Concord, Massachusetts. Aaron was the youngest the four famous Willard clockmaking brothers including Benjamin, Simon and Ephraim. Aaron worked in Roxbury, Massachusetts, and Boston where he set-up his “factory”. He died in Boston on May 20, 1844.

Aaron Willard Jr. (born 1783, died 1864) was the son of [...] Click here to continue reading.


Willard, Ephraim – American Clockmaker

Ephraim Willard, Clockmaker

Ephraim Willard was the third brother in the famous clockmaking family of Benjamin, Simon, Ephraim and Aaron Willard. Ephraim was born in 1755 and worked in Medford and Roxbury, Massachusetts, Boston and New York.

For the complete story of this remarkable family, see Simon Willard and His Clocks, 1968, by John Ware Willard.


Willard, Benjamin – American Clockmaker

Benjamin Willard (died 1803) was the eldest brother in the famous clockmaking family of Benjamin, Simon, Ephraim and Aaron Willard. Benjamin was born in 1743 and worked in Grafton, Lexington and Roxbury, Massachusetts, Boston and Baltimore.


Vernis Martin Decoration

Vernis Martin

The use of lacquer with painted decoration was known in China as early as 1000 B.C. and in Japan from at least the sixth century A.D. In the 16th and 17th centuries this Chinoiserie decoration became very popular throughout Europe and many cabinetmakers and decorators tried to imitate its deep and lusterous alure, mostly without success.

Four French brothers working circa 1730 in Paris finally developed a successful alternative when they perfected [...] Click here to continue reading.


Thomas, Seth & Hoadley, Silas – American Clockmakers

Seth Thomas & Silas Hoadley

These two Connecticut clockmakers worked for Eli Terry (circa 1807 to 1810) during the period when Terry invented the “factory system” to produce large quantities of identical, inexpensive clocks which then could be installed in a case of the customer’s choice (and purse), or simply hung on the wall.

Circa 1810 Thomas and Hoadley bought Eli Terry’s clock shop in Plymouth, Connecticut and remained partners for about three [...] Click here to continue reading.


Stretch Family of Clockmakers – Pennsylvania

The Stretch Family of Clockmakers

A prominent Pennsylvania family of 18th century clockmakers began their trade with Samuel Stretch,who was working in Philadelphia, circa 1711.

Samuel took his nephew Peter Stretch (1690 to 1740) as his apprentice, and he, in turn, raised two sons as clockmakers, Thomas (1720 to 1760) and William (born circa 1720). In addition to making fine clocks, Thomas was also active in civic affairs and is remembered as one of [...] Click here to continue reading.


Sessions Clock Co. – Connecticut

The Sessions Clock Company of Bristol & Forestville, Connecticut, was the successor company to the E. N. Welch Manufacturing Co. originally founded circa 1830. In 1903, following the death of James Welch in 1902, W. E. Sessions and A. L. Sessions invested in the business and changed its name to the Sessions Clock Company.


Sennes, Elmer O. – American Clockmaker & Cabinetmaker – Massachusetts

Elmer O. Stennes: Clockmaker, Cabinetmaker and Murderer

In the antiques world a good story can add as much to the value of an object as its quality or rarity. That story or history of an object is known as the provenance. Provenance that is mixed with violence seems to add an irresistible appeal. So it is with the clocks and other creations of Elmer O. Stennes (1911 to 1975), an East Weymouth, Massachusetts cabinetmaker [...] Click here to continue reading.


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