Miniature Angelus Clock, c. 1875
The Angelus Clock Company made clocks for a very specific purpose and market. They designed their clocks to chime only three times a day: at six a.m., twelve p.m., and six p.m. The company intended for Roman Catholics to buy these clocks to use in their homes as a substitute for public cathedral bells. The chimes at morning, noon, and evening indicated when it was time to say the Angelus Domini, a prayer commemorating the Annunciation.
Just about every aspect of this clock identifies it as a religious piece. Its appearance intentionally resembles a cathedral, with the marbleized wood, Gothic arch with cross, and image of Mary and Gabriel on the front. A label on the reverse of this image has a Biblical passage related to the Annunciation, as well as the Angelus Domini prayer.
The Angelus Clock Company was incorporated on March 20, 1874, but apparently this particular type of clock did not have enough popularity to sustain them. The company went out of business approximately one year later.
Donated by J.W. Simmons, FNAWCC # 6674
October 21, 2005
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