Bronze Statuette Clock, c. 1910
Sources disagree on what the statue supporting this clock represents. It has been called everything from a simple knight to Mars, the Roman god of war. The answer lies in an early twentieth-century catalog from the New Haven Clock Company, which calls the figure the "Trumpeter". The soldier, dressed in the uniform of the Roman army, holds a trumpet in his right hand and a flag in his left. The trumpeter played an important role in the Roman army: he signaled orders to the other soldiers on his instrument. There were actually different kinds of trumpets; the straight kind shown on this clock was called a tuba, although it bears no resemblance to the modern tuba.
In the New Haven Clock Company catalog, this figure appears alongside other classical, mythological, and animal statuettes. Most of them do not have clocks pictured with them, which might mean that the clocks and figures were interchangeable. The clock itself is very basic, except for the three finials at the top and the chain hanging below. Customers could get the figure in a bronze finish like this example has, for $1.35, or they choose a gilt finish for twenty cents more.
Donated by John Rodkey, NAWCC#27962
October 21, 2005
Copyright © 2005 National Association of Watch and Clock Collectors