Chelsea Clock Company Tambour No. 3 Clock, ca. 1915

Value (2011) | $1,500 Retail

This is a clock that I picked up at a garage sale probably 20 years ago. I'm not a clock collector, so I guess I don't really know what I've got or what I'm doing. But in fact, I was probably playing hooky from work that day and was supposed to be running errands for the job, and I saw this garage sale, and I'm always looking for tools or some sort of thing, and there it was.

And what did you pay for the clock?

I paid $20. Well, it looked kind of cool, and then I went to pick it up and it... well, like, I called it a boat anchor earlier. It's awful heavy.

That's funny you call it a boat anchor because in the trade, sometimes we call these types of clocks boat anchors because of the weight of them, they're so heavy. The average one I see quite a bit here at the Roadshow, and they're wood cases, most of them are made in Connecticut, and they're worth about $20. They made so many of them. But this clock is called a Tambour No. 3, and it was made by the Chelsea Clock Company in Chelsea, Massachusetts. Chelsea clocks are synonymous with quality. They have a wonderful reputation. They're a company that started in 1897, and they're still in business today. This is a tambour style, and it refers to the shape of it right here, and this is a very distinctive case where it has these four balled feet and these wonderful rolled ends. It has a six-inch dial, which is very nice, and it has these raised numerals, which they call a special dial. It's a time-and-strike mechanism, meaning it strikes the hour on the hour. It has a "J.B. Hudson Co. in Minneapolis." It's made of brass.

That was my guess.

And it is very heavy. It'd probably weigh about 45 pounds or so. And it has this what they call a patented bronze finish on it. This was made circa 1915, and in 1917 it retailed for $116. This clock in today's market, in a retail setting, would probably sell for about $1,500.

Oh, really? That beats 20 bucks, I guess.

Yeah, it's a pretty good return on a $20 investment.

Appraisal Details

Delaney Antique Clocks
West Townsend, MA
Appraised value (2011)
$1,500 Retail
Minneapolis, MN (July 09, 2011)
Brass , Metal

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