David Wood of Newburyport, Massachusetts. A birch case tall clock.
This is a fine birch tall case clock with a lovely painted dial signed by David Wood of Newburyport, Massachusetts. This clock was made circa 1805.
This sophisticated country form is constructed in a birch wood case. It has been recently refinished and is in wonderful color and condition. The case is supported by four applied og bracket feet. These raise the base section up off the floor. The base panel is constructed with the grain running in a vertical format. The waist of this clock is fitted with a tombstone shaped waist door that is trimmed with a simple molded edge. The front corners of the waist section are fitted with brass stop fluted quarter columns that terminate in brass quarter capitals. The swan’s neck style hood is well developed. The arches terminate in full inlaid pinwheels of alternating light and dark petals. Three brass finials are supported by chimneys or finial plinths. A dental molding is located below the arch moldings. The molded arch is supported by fluted bonnet columns. They flank the arched bonnet door and are mounted in brass capitals. Two quarter columns are fitted to the back of the hood. The hood sides feature tombstone shaped side lights that are fitted with glass.
The iron dial is colorfully painted. This dial is signed by the clockmaker in a fluid script hand. It reads, “David Wood / Newburyport” below the calendar aperture. The time track is formatted in Roman style hour numerals. The five minute markers are an Arabic form. This dial also displays the subsidiary seconds and a day of the month calendar. The iron hands are hand filed and indicate the time.
The time and strike movement is of good quality. It is constructed in brass and features steel pinions, rack and snail actuated striking on a cast iron bell. It is weight driven and designed to run for eight-days on a full wind.
This clock in a modest size. It measures approximately 7 feet 3 inches (87 inches) tall, 21 inches wide and 9.5 inches deep. This scale should fit in 99 percent of America’s homes.
About David Wood of Newburyport, Massachusetts.
David Wood was born the son of John and Eunice Wood in Newburyport, Massachusetts on July 5, 1766. It is thought that he may have been apprenticed to either Daniel Balch Senior or one of the members of the Mulliken family. All of whom were prominent Clockmakers in this region. On June 13, 1792, David advertised that he had set up a shop in Market Square, near Reverend Andrews Meeting House, where he made and sold clocks. Three short years latter, he married Elizabeth Bird in 1795. It has become evident, that David Wood was also a Retailer. In 1806, he advertised that he had for sale “Willard’s best Patent Timepieces, for as low as can be purchased in Roxbury.” In the year 1818, he and Abel Moulton, a local silversmith, moved into the shop formerly occupied by Thomas H. Balch. In 1824 he advertised that he had moved on the westerly side of Market Square opposite the Market House. After his wife’s death in 1846, he moved to Lexington to live near is son David, who was a merchant in that town.
It has become quite obvious to us that David Wood was a very successful Clockmaker and Retailer of Clocks. Over the last 40 plus years of being in the business of selling clocks, we have sold many examples of wall, shelf, and tall case clocks bearing this Maker’s signature on the dial.
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