Chicago Time Register Company, 1212 Fisher Building, Chicago. The Chicago Automatic Time Recorder clock. 200001

This is a seldom seen model. Very few have come to the marketplace. This clock was introduced in about 1898 by the Chicago Time Register Company. That maybe partly due to the fact that the Chicago Time Register Company was acquired by ITR in 1901. This model may not have survived after the acquisition.

This very interesting clock was designed for use as a time clock and register in a work environment of some kind, principally in factories and large establishments where it is necessary to record the time of employees. It was patented on May 3, 1898. Its purpose was to keep a record of the arrival and departure of employees. There is an obvious advantage for both the employer and also the employees in the ability of being able to see that the device used recorded the time accurately. Once installed, an employee using this version was assigned a numbered key. They would be able to record when they started or ended a work session by placing their key in the small opening in the bottom of the case. This would activate the time recording mechanism and print the time and the key number on the paper. The paper is routed so that the recording is visible through the small window located in door. At the end of each week, an accountant would inspect this registrar and tally the hours worked. One would be paid accordingly.

This very unusual model is in good overall condition. Other than having the glass replaced in the door, the rest of the clock is very good. The case is constructed in solid oak and retains a wonderful period finish that is dry and mostly undisturbed. This model is decorated with various carvings that include dentil molding under the cornice, beading along the door glass and floral patterns on the dial mask, the door framing and also on the corbels at the bottom of the case. The decorative detail of carvings is not traditionally found on a time clock and as a result, in my mind makes this a special model. An opening is made in the center of the lower section of the case. This is where the employee inserts the assign numerical key. The employee’s number and the time the operating key is inserted in to the slot would then be recorded. It would be printed on the paper in plain figures and displayed from behind the door glass for the employee to review exactly as they are recorded. In the off chance that the time was recorded incorrectly, the employee would be able to alert the management right away. The metal dial is in wonderful original condition. It is nicely decorated and displays the time. A Roman style font is used to indicate the hours on the inside of the closed minute ring. The Seth Thomas, “ST” logo is display below the Roman hour numeral XII. This dial also is printed with the wording, “MANUFACTURED IN THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA” along the lower edge. The graphics are excellent. The time only movement is robustly constructed in brass and is designed to run eight-days on a full wind. The movement also powers the lower time tracking mechanism through a steel shaft or PTO. This can been seen through the glass door and is positioned in front of the brass covered pendulum bob. The bob is support by a wooden rod. The motion of this pendulum provides a great visual for those that like mechanical items. The recording mechanism is located in the bottom of the case. A plaque at the bottom is case with the patent date. It reads, “PAT.MAY3.1898 / SEP. 19. 1899.”

This clock was made circa 1922. This case measures approximately 45.5 inches long, 17.5 inches wide and 14 inches deep.

I would like to thank David Johnson the owner of the web site: www.AntiqueTimeClocks.com for helping me identify this model.

200001

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