A rare dwarf clock, by Benjamin Torrey, Hanover, Massachusetts circa 1817-20. The case attributed to Abiel White of Weymouth, Massachusetts.
This attractive dwarf clock has a dial signed by the Southeastern Massachusetts clockmaker Benjamin D. Torrey [1796-1843]. His clocks are very rare, only five signed shelf clocks and this single dwarf clock are known to bear his name. While his work is high quality and bears the influence of the local clockmaking traditions, very little is known of this obscure maker. He was contemporary of the Quaker clockmaker Reuben Tower, who was a member of the Southeastern Massachusetts clockmakers trained by Joshua Wilder and John Bailey. Torrey’s clock resemble those of Reuben Tower and also David Studley. It is likely that Torrey also received his training form Wilder or Bailey.
The one-piece case is constructed of stained pine that is colored to represent mahogany. The surface has a rich color and pleasing patina. The bell shaped pediment has a lobbed splat set with a brass urn-form finial. This crest transitions with a molded edge to a rectangular dial door with a tombstone-form glazed opening. The door has an original brass latch opens to a finely painted iron dial that was produced in Boston.
The dial features a lunette decorated with a polychrome and gilt Classical urn with scrolls and floral sprigs. The clock face is framed by four patriotic shield-form corner spandrels within gilt scrolls. The dial has a ring of Arabic numerals to demark the hour within a gilt border. The dial is fitted with wonderful original steel pointer hands. It is signed with the maker’s name and locale in neat calligraphy, “Benj. D. Torry / HANOVER”. The brass movement has a passing strike and original steel shaft pendulum and lead weight. The one piece case has a dial door and a pendulum door but the movement is accessed via a full length hinged backboard.
The hood transitions into the waist section with a flared throat molding. A hinged and locking door allows access to the pendulum. The waist section transitions to the base with another molded and flared molding. The rectangular base panel transitions with an applied molding to bracket feet with a simple lobbed apron.
Dimensions: Height including finial 46 ½”, Width 11 3/8”, Depth 6”.
Call (781) 828-1650 or E-mail us for questions or pricing on this item. Please reference inventory number 12063.