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Glenn Addington By Glenn Addington, 14th Sep 2017 | Follow this author | RSS Feed
Posted in Wikinut>Travel>North America>United States>Connecticut

A description of the fascinating American Clock and Watch Museum in Bristol, Connecticut.

American Clock and Watch Museum

The American Clock and Watch Museum in Bristol Connecticut is focused on horology - the history, science and art of time- keeping and timekeepers. This museum is the world’s preeminent horological museum concerning the industrial-made clocks of the 19th and early 20th century in America.

Early clock making in American

In the early days of clock making in America, most clocks were made by hand out of wood. The individual pieces were made to fit together, but this was a slow, painstaking process. Eli Terry pioneered the process of making machines which could mass-produce the many gears and parts for clocks. This greatly increased the production potential and interchangeability of clock parts. This resulted in a huge industry for the New England states in the mid-nineteenth century. In Bristol alone, there were 18 different clock companies through the years.

Your introduction to the museum

There are eight galleries within the two levels of the museum, with over 5500 clocks and watches. There’s also a large display of the various types and sizes of keys used for winding the many different. Clocks for railroad depots, factory night watchmen, for the Navy on-board ship, and even church steeple or city hall buildings are all on display.

"Traveling salesmen?"

Along with other historical displays about the huge clock industry in New England at that time, the museum tells the history of the traveling clock salesmen, who would travel from town to town, selling clocks. The richer people could afford a large clock – but not the poorer folks. So the salesmen came up with the idea of selling these people the clock with the face, works, back and pendulum. This way, the common man could have a decent time-keeping piece on the wall. If prosperity came his way, he could buy the entire case for the clock when the salesman came through the next time.

Museum and location

The museum also has a store with not only clock and watch related products, but also mechanical toys for children to teach learning by doing. For the old clock enthusiast, or anyone interested, there are collection-related books and catalogs, plans for building clock cases and clock movements, and much more.
First opening in 1952 as the Bristol Clock Museum, the museum is located in the Federal Hill District of Bristol in an 1801 Federal style home at 100 Maple Street. Bristol Connecticut is north of Interstate 84, and 30 miles west of Hartford Connecticut.


Clock Museum, Clocks, Watches

Meet the author

author avatar Glenn Addington
I am an American, former Viet Nam veteran, and a Christian, living in East Tennessee. I am now retired and am pursuing a writing career. I would welcome writing assignments.

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