J.J. Elliott Monumental Carved Mahogany Quarter-chiming Hall Clock, c. 1900, case attributed to R.J. Horner & Co., W. 23rd Street, New York, from the estate of Colonel Park Shaw of Carefree, Arizona, finely carved removable crest with winged figures flanking a center raised boss supported by flowers, leaves, and scroll decoration over the gadrooned crown molding, below winged griffins flank the composite brass arabic numeral dial with seconds bit, subsidiary dials for Chime-Silent and Westminster/Whittington chime selection, moon's age in the arch and pierced brass grillwork on spandrels and center, the glazed waist door flanked by human and fish-form caryatids over the fully carved base panel with central putti, birds, a grotesque mask, and allegorical human depictions of the wind on a punch-decorated ground, eight-day, three-train, quarter-chiming movement by J.J. Elliott, LTD, London, with nine tubular bells, deadbeat escapement, rack and snail strike, brass-faced seconds-beating pendulum and three brass-cased weights, ht. 116 in.
Provenance: This clock was reportedly owned by John Jacob Astor IV of the prominent Astor family of New York. Purchased from Tiffany & Co. of New York in the early 20th century by Mr. Astor and given as a gift to a friend by the name of Ms. Huntington, a Metropolitan Opera singer. After the passing of Mr. Astor in 1914 aboard the famous Titanic, Ms. Huntington sold it to a Dr. and Mrs. John A. Burke, an eminent New York physician. Dr. Burke and his wife retired to Pittsfield, Massachusetts, his native city, sometime in the late 1920s early 1930s. An article dated October 1934 appeared in the Berkshire Evening Eagle titled "John Jacob Astor's Clock Stands in Local Homestead" recalls a short history of the clock. It was then gifted to or purchased by Mr. and Mrs. Shaw in 1967, also of Pittsfield. It was then handed down to A. Park Shaw Jr. who became a Colonel in the U.S. Army and resided in his later years in Carefree, Arizona, until his death last year. Mrs. Cherri Shaw is parting with this beloved family piece with a heavy heart but believes it will find a new caring custodian.
There is extensive family history, including black-and-white photographs, repair invoices, and original typed correspondences between R.P. Swanson, manager of the clocks department at Tiffany & Co., R.W. Elliott of F.W. Elliot Ltd., of Croydon, England, the maker of the movement, and Park Shaw Jr. between the dates of July 1968 and November 1969 trying to piece together the history of this monumental carved clock. There is a photocopied letter dated October 7th, 1969 on F.W. Elliot letterhead to a Rosealind Silberman stating the possible carver of this clock was named Orpen, and the mechanism was imported into the states by Harris and Harrington sometime between 1886-1901.
Colonel Park Shaw (1923-2016) graduated from the Kentucky Military Institute in 1942. After graduation he immediately enlisted and was commissioned as a 2nd Lieutenant at Fort Benning, Georgia. He participated with General MacArthur with the initial assault on Luzon in 1945. He later was involved in the initial occupation of Hokkaido, Japan. Following the war, Col. Shaw served on the General Staff of the 6th Army at Presidio in San Francisco. In 1991, he was inducted into the Infantry Officers' Candidate School Hall of Fame. In 2006 he was inducted to the Arizona Veterans' Hall of Fame awarded by Governor Janet Napolitano.
original painted moon's phase with touch-ups, lacking the carved bun feet, seating board has later screws and some splits, tubes not marked, Pendulum on cardboard. Folder with ephemera. Has winding key and door key.
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