Shown below are two examples of the “Baxter” wooden case time only clock.This clock is 8 7/16 inches wide and 4 1/2 inches tall, with a convex glass over the two-tone silver color dial.Dating Antique Clocks can be an exact science providing you have the right reference books and the proper experience.However, if you don’t there are various little things that can help when dating antique clocks.c1800 – reverse-painted glass tablets date from the early 1800’s.c1820 – wooden movements were generally used in early American shelf clocks until around 1820.They are metal rods specially tuned to produce a sequence of chime notes when struck by the movement’s chime hammers. c1910 – Bakelite an early inflammable, mouldable plastic, was invented. Leo Baekeland, founded the Bakelite Corporation around 1910.It reached its height of popularity in the 1930’s and 40’s and was used in a wide variety of consumer products.
I recall seeing a “13” for these digits once, so perhaps the second two digits represent a lunar month!It provided a safe alternative to the hazardous use of mercury in gilding metals, which was banned c1799.c1660 – calendar movements were introduced to English longcase clocks.Some Seth Thomas electric clocks from the late 1940s and early 1950s have a date code stamped into the rear of the case, below the power cord opening.The code is 4 digits, and I believe that the first two digits represent the year, and the last two digits give the month.The construction of various parts can and will help in dating your antique clock.Specifically the style and type of clock hand and the dial, both of which have varied over time.Westclox used lunar months at one time for their bookkeeping, but I’m not sure about Seth Thomas.On the first example above the metal rear cover is recessed into the wood, whereas on the second it is not.In 1810, Thomas, with Silas Hoadley, bought Terry’s Connecticut factory. The owner of an old clock often asks, “How old is it?