Samuel Solliday of Doylestown, Pennsylvania
A very attractive and colorful tall case clock made by Samuel Solliday of Doylestown, Pennsylvania.
This fine example is constructed in solid walnut and has been recently refinished. The color is warm and inviting and compliments the colorful condition of the painted dial.
This case stands on four applied bracket feet. These are nicely formed and are mounted to the base board and base molding of the clock case. The base section features and applied panel. This panel is nicely shaped at the top. The sides of the base incorporate canted corners that feature a fluted design. These terminate in a lamb's tongue molding that is embellished with carvings. This decorative treatment is also found in the waist section. These help center a long waist door that is a tombstone form. Here one will note the skillfully carved bird motif which is nicely executed. Inside this case is an old repair label that has been pasted onto the backboard. This clock was repaired by Daniel Bates of Philadelphia on May 8th, 1884. The bonnet or hood is constructed with a swans neck pediment. The upper molding is boldly formed and terminates in applied brass rosettes. Three brass finials surmount the clock case. Fully turned and wonderfully shaped bonnet columns terminate in brass capitals. These flank the arched glazed door which opens to a colorfully painted iron dial.
This painted dial is of local origin. The theme depicted in the four spandrels areas is a reoccurring motif seen on dials from this region. The paint work is in excellent condition. This dial has the traditional displays of hours, minutes, seconds and calendar date. It also incorporates a lunar calendar or moon phase mechanism in the arch. The Maker's name and working location, "Doylestown" are located just below the calendar aperture. This dial is in excellent original condition.
The movement is constructed in brass and is designed to run eight days on a full wind. It will also strike each hour on a cast iron bell which is mounted above the movement. It is good quality. The front plate of this movement is die stamped with the name "Wainwright No." The Wainwright firm was possibly located in Nottingham England. They would have cast the plates for this movement and then sold them to an importer who brought them to America. This type of situation became more frequent as the American clock manufacturing trade matured.
This impressive clock stands approximately 8 feet 4 inches tall. It was made circa 1825.
About Samuel Solliday of Doylestown, Pennsylvania.
Samuel Solliday was born the son of John Solliday (1755-1842) and Elizabeth Hinckel (1764-1841) in 1804. Samuel father’s John and his grandfather Frederick were also clock makers. It is believed that Samuel trained under his Father John and most likely worked with him for a period of time. At the age of twenty-four, Samuel is listed in the Marlborough tax records as a single man. By 1831, Samuel has earned a medical degree and a year later is wed to Deborah Schmidt. Samuel died sometime in 1845. He is buried in Frieden’s Cemetery in Sumneytown.
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