Mahogony Clock

Posted On January 9, 2016 at 11:48 am by / No Comments

Our current specimen is a mahogany Peatling clock.

There were “simpler” finishes of Peatling clocks. This one is J. No Peatling, Boston, with a height of 90″ (251cm). The ornaments are practically the same as on the other. The item description says:

Oak longcase clock, arched painted dial, signed J.No Peatling, Boston, with a shepherdess oval to the lunette, subsidiary second dial and date aperture, eight-day two chain movement, 231cms.

Another Peatling longcase was sold as Item 272 by Bears & Hampton, Littlewood (GB) in 2011:

An oak and mahogany longcase clock, the eight day movement with arched

dial, signed John Peatling, Boston with arabic numerals, date aperture under glazed hood with fluted columns, above trunk fitted shaped crossgrained door.


It is unclear whether it is the same as the later online auction, but the lack of fluted columns (? – bad picture quality prevents more thorough examination) suggests otherwise, also, no mention of the sheperdess.

It is possible that Peatling was only partially finishing the clocks he sold in the US. There is one identified Peatling pocket watch[1] from the early 19th C.:

This watch signed John Peatling, Boston is a good example of a standard Liverpool contract watch from the period of 1800 to 1820. The case bears a London hallmark for 1804 with the maker’s mark of Samuel Hennel (1778-1837). The cream dial is unusual at this period and could be a later replacement. The sterling pair case is very solid and has the typical 5 knuckle joint found on medium grade English work. The gold heart and arrow hands are rather nicer than the standard fare. The movement serial number 9213 is clearly that of the actual maker and not Peatling.

The only exact information came from Tim Sweet of the M.O.S.T Clock & Watch co.:

The only John Peatling I could find, has him living and working in Bourne, North West of Peterborough, but that date is 1828 .  Perhaps the Boston was added to the dial when it was imported to the US.  There were a lot of imports coming from England and sorting them out can be very difficult due to the many short lived partnership that occurred back then.

What the sources suggest


As virtually nobody could come up with any solid information, there are no real plausible explanations. The latter two sources give the most information on our man. First, the pocket watch was a quite luxurious timepiece in its time, just like the big standing clocks. Second, the English John Peatling overlaps in period with the supposed manufacture of the watch. Third, English clocks and watches were regularly imported to the US. The fact that two of the early 19th C. Peatlings can be found in England, a period when it was unlikely to export clocks from the US to England, suggests that the Boston marking might be the place of manufacturing. There is a Boston(Lincolnshire) in Britain, and although that’s not Peterborough (Lincolnshire), our Peatling was recorded in Lincolnshire. It is not unlikely that the clockmaker simply moved, and other records on his whereabouts are non-existent.


The Chippendale features also support the dating of this clock to the first quarter of the 19th C.


The pricing might be reconsidered, as similar clocks go around 15 K USD in Great Britain. But the fact that this seems a very rare piece, the higher price might be justifiable. It’s strange that a clockmaker like Peatling disappeared from the records, despite making expensive machineries.


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