In 1778, Martin Cheney was born into a well known and established clockmaking family. He was one of four clockmakers born to Benjamin Cheney 1725-1815 and Elizabeth Long Cheney in East Hartford, Connecticut. Benjamin most likely trained all four of his boys in the art of clockmaking. Asahel was the oldest and was born in 1759. He moves on into Vermont. Elisha was born in 1770 and died in 1847. He settled in Berlin, Connecticut. Russell was younger. It appears he moved North to Putney, Vermont. Martin also had an uncle Timothy 1731-1795. He becomes a well known clockmaker in East Hartford and works closely with Benjamin. By 1803, Martin moved up the Connecticut river to Windsor, Vermont. In 1804 he advertises that he has for sale fine English Watches, watch keys, chains and seals. He moves to Montreal in 1809. Here he remained for some twenty years. In 1827, Martin places an advertisement in Burlington, Vermont newspaper for a journeyman clockmaker to work with him in Montreal. In 1817 he forms a partnership with J. A. Dwight and advertised this business as Cheney & Dwight. Several clocks have been recorded by this Maker. Pictured in “The Best the Country Affords: Vermont Furniture 1765 – 1850” is a signed brass dial tall clock by Asahel Cheney. On the seat boat of the clock it is written, “This clock made by Martin Cheney.” This implies that the two work with it other on occasion. There is also a Massachusetts Shelf clock form with an engraved kidney style brass dial in the Henry Ford Museum and Greenfield Village. This clock is signed by “Martin Cheney Windsor.” This clock has a strong Boston influence.
This is a wonderful inlaid mahogany case. The painted dial is signed by the "Windsor, Vermont" clockmaker "Martin Cheney." This example… read more