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    French Pendulum Clock, ca. 1865

    Appraised Value:

    $1,800 - $2,200 (1999)

    Updated Value:

    $2,500 - $3,500 (2014)

    Appraised on: June 19, 1999

    Appraised in: Baltimore, Maryland

    Appraised by: Gordon Converse

    Category: Clocks & Watches

    Episode Info: Baltimore (#1829)
    Baltimore (#410)

    Originally Aired: April 3, 2000

    slideshow IMAGE: 1 of 8 Next 

    More Like This:

    Form: Clock
    Period / Style: 19th Century
    Value Range: $1,800 - $2,200 (1999)
    Updated Value: $2,500 - $3,500 (2014)

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    Appraisal Video: (2:28)


    Appraised By:

    Gordon Converse
    Clocks & Watches

    Appraisal Transcript:
    GUEST: The story in the family is that it was a wedding present to Betsy Patterson and Jerome Bonaparte.

    APPRAISER: Okay-- you brought in a picture of her.

    GUEST: The Patterson family was a Baltimore family and she, Betsy, apparently was quite a social lady. I use "lady" loosely because I understand her reputation wasn't the best. And Napoleon's youngest brother, Jerome, was in the West Indies with the French Navy. And a war broke out with England and Jerome was told to come back to France to fight the war. He came to Baltimore to get on a ship, saw Betsy Patterson, and the two of them fell madly in love.

    APPRAISER: When did they get married?

    GUEST: In 1803.

    APPRAISER: Okay, well, this is a very interesting clock. Look, the pendulum goes back and forth like a swing rather than back and forth like a pendulum. And that's a very novel feature. And it is a French clock. But if you turn it around and look at the rear, you can see the unusual escapement in it and you notice that it has a stamping on the back. And the stamping says Farcot. And Farcot's patent was a French patent for the escapement, which was a gizmo which allowed the swing action to happen. The only thing is that the patent was patented in 1862.

    GUEST: Aha.

    APPRAISER: So this clock...

    GUEST: Couldn't possibly...

    APPRAISER: You got it, Ann.

    GUEST: Couldn't possibly.

    APPRAISER: I think you're way ahead of me here. It could not have been made before 1862. Well, if this were just a pendulum clock it would probably be worth $700 or $800 because it's a pretty pendulum clock. But the way it is now with the unusual pendulum and the condition, I think it deserves a value more in the area of $1,800 to $2,200.

    GUEST: Fine. Because I think she's not leaving our family ever, so...

    APPRAISER: That's right, and she keeps swinging, too.

    GUEST: Yes. (chuckling) I will not repeat the false story anymore.

    APPRAISER: Oh, don't worry. It's a good story, keep it going.

    GUEST: Thanks, thanks, that's fun.

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