New England Chapter No. 8 NAWCC


Holiday Inn at Boxborough Woods, Massachusetts


by Brian Wilcox

The spring meeting was held at the Holiday Inn at Boxborough MA.on April 4, 1998. The Chapter President opened the meeting with the sad news that William Brown, a Chapter Eight Member from Norwood, MA, had recently died. Our thoughts and prayers go out to the Brown family and their friends.

Bob Merrill also welcomed younger members. There were several at the meeting. The council policy for younger members is to try to encourage them to join us by providing one free entrance and luncheon per parent of a child under 13. We hope they are intrigued by our mart and our educational offerings. Bob Merrill reported that the Chapter mentor introduction program was also under way, matching members with mentors, some members have already asked for an introduction to a suitable mentor. One such member is Richard Welsh. Richard joined NAWCC in January 1998, and Chapter Eight in March. He is new to horology. The Council is already searching for suitable matchings for all the mentor requests.

360 members and their guests attended. There were 75 mart tables.

At the Willard House Mart table John Stephens, the Curator at Willard, displayed some of the tool collection from the tool room at Willard House. Included was the depthing tool that Simon Willard had used. The exhibit from the American Clock and Watch Museum was a collection of tall clock castings attributed to Israel Ricksecker, Dover Ohio, presented by AWC Museum Director, Dr.Nancy Connelly, and Museum Volunteer, Jean Haines. The castings contained movement plates, time and strike trains, and its control; pieces with winding barrel assemblies, motion work the escarpment and bell striking pieces, all in its unfinished state. This unique collection is believed to be the only complete set in existence and it was donated to the American Clock and Watch Museum by Jim Christian, Orrville, Ohio in 1997.

The morning workshop was presented by Steven C.Sanborn, entitled "Mantel Clocks 101".

The workshop was well received and there was not a vacant seat in the room. It was of great interest to the beginner and experienced clock devote.

Steve talked about the examination and repairing of eight day, striking and spring driven clocks. He used a blackboard, several movements and examples from "Steve`s little horrors box" - (a collection of how not to do its, taken from clocks that came to the Sanborn Clockshop in need of some ethical restoration work), all donated by the weekend warriors of clock disrepair's. As these "little horrors" were circulated, the correct methods of repair and rectification were discussed. What and where to look for in clock problems. We all received a list of items to check - and what to examine. Steve used a common sense approach. Tips were provided, such as using the tweezers as an extension of your fingers and the use of a plastic margarine container or a sturdy box to support your clock, Steve discourages the use of assembly clamps and the use of a pivot locator. He demonstrated how to "listen to the pallets" with the use of a beat amplifier, and how to make the clock "a happy clock."

For his efforts the students awarded Steve a "PHD" in pivot polishing.??

Steve, a Past President, and member of Chapter Eight, was apprenticed to a watch and clock repairman in Winchester. When his mentor passed away, Steve inherited the business and continued working the business after school hours. Steve Sanborn joined NAWCC in 1959, at the age of ten, sponsored by Brooks Palmer, a family friend.from Winchester, MA. Steve has a BS in business administration. He runs a very busy clockshop in New Hampshire.

There were two featured speakers, Ed Ueberall and Kent Singer from The Railroaders` Corner, a forum for discussion of railroad pocket watches, published in the NAWCC Bulletin. Kent Singer presented the appetizer -entitled "Mexican railroad standard watches". It was an excellent presentation, researched from trade magazines from the turn of the century, notes from Larry Treiman, and contact with the companies in Switzerland that supplied watches to the railroad which was greatly influenced by United States interests, and a some influence from the Canadian railroads.

The Railroaders, Ed Ueberall (L) and Kent Singer (R), demonstrating the "six positions".

After lunch, Ed Ueberall, continued with the theme of railroad watches. Slides of less common watches were displayed, and some of the salient features were discussed. The forum was then opened up for questions and discussion with subjects ranging from ownership and learners to the importance of the watch inspections of the watches used on the railroads today. The quality of the slides were first class, and it was very evident that both presenters have researched the subject well. The partnership was unique, considering it all began with a watch they both wanted. The friendship survived this crisis and Kent still has the watch!!. A remarkable duo who work well together.and are known for the "Railroaders Forum," published in each Bulletin.

Kent Singer's research of the railroad brotherhood's journals led to Chapter Fifty-five's donation to the NAWCC library "The story of a Watch" and is available for loan (#563). He has been collecting watches for about twenty years, and has authored articles for the Bulletin. Kent and Ed Ueberall authored the article "The Elgin 571" in the October 1995 Bulletin #298 with a follow up entitled "The Elgin 571 revisited" in the August 1996 #303.

Kent Singer has been collecting railroad watches for more than 20-years. His interest in the subject grew out of his research into railroad operations and the history of railroads.

Ed Ueberall is a plant scheduler for a manufacturer of photographic film and paper. He holds bachelors and masters degrees from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. He has a 20- year interest in the collection and restoration of pocket watches which were approved for use on North American railroads. He is a member of Chapter #1 and #55.

Standard Bearers: Ed Ueberall (L) & Kent Singer

Tran Duy Ly (R), Arlington Book Co., at his table

New England Chapter No. 8 NAWCC


Holiday Inn at Boxborough Woods, Massachusetts

VENUE: The Holiday Inn, Boxborough Woods, Massachusetts. The Hotel is located on the east side of Route 1-495 at exit 28. Those desiring overnight lodging should contact the hotel directly at 978-263-8701.

The Chapter hospitality suite will be open on Friday 3rd., at 5.00pm -- ask at the front desk.

Registrations before March 28,1998 are $18 .
Registrations received after March 28,1998 and "walk-ins" will be $25
As always, registration includes your luncheon and is required for participation in any of the meeting activities.

7:30 AM Registration name tags available for those members who preregistered.
Registration table open for "walk-ins".
8:00 AM Mart area open for setup by table holders. Security on duty.
8:30 AM Mart opens.
Special events in the mart room:
The American Clock and Watch Exhibit and The Willard House Tool Exhibit
9:30 AM Morning workshop "Mantle Clocks101" presenter Steven Sanborn.
11:30 AM Mart room closes for luncheon break. Mart security remains "in place"
11:45 AM Luncheon talk: "Rail road pocket watches"
The Featured Speakers for today are Ed Ueberall and Kent Singer
This duo should need no introduction and are noted for "The Railroaders` Corner" - A Forum for the discussion of railroad watches published by the NAWCC Bulletin.
Noon  Luncheon
1:15 PM "The Rail road pocket watches The Forum continues"
3:00 PM Mart closes - Mart security ends.

Great to see so many of you at Sturbridge. Thanks to David Morgan for joining us. We had a great discussion about the current affairs of our organization. Hope you got to meet him and ask questions.

In council we discussed at length our policy for younger members and voted to try encouraging them to join us by providing one free entrance and luncheon per parent of a child under 13. We hope they are intrigued by our mart and our educational offerings. I encourage everybody to make them welcome .

Early response from the old timers has been good.Some mentor requests have been welcomed.Council members are having good conversations. Please keep up the thought provoking ideas and program suggestions. This is your organization and is greater with your input.

The Willard house is sponsoring a petition for a clock stamp. Please signup and help by getting signatures. Forms are available on the Willard house mart table.

Again, keeping with the mix of clocks and watches, we have another program that should appeal to everyone. Ed Ueberall and Kent Singer are our featured speakers and their presentation today will cover railroad watches. Their luncheon talk will be an overview but they will also be featured for our afternoon workshop which will allow more detail and discussion. Everyone should be familiar with their regular feature in the Bulletin - "The Railroaders' Corner."

Steve Sanborn will present "Mantle Clocks 101" for the morning workshop.This will cover the basics of working on Connecticut movements, directed at the novice, but also a good review for us "experts.."

The program for the Willard House Workshop, scheduled for Saturday, May 23, 1998, is taking shape. Joe Brown is scheduled to talk about identifying features of Willard movements. Jim Moss will present the work he has done studying ammoniated cleaning solutions, stress corrosion cracking, and alternative means of cleaning.This one should be quite interesting and controversial for those of us that love that nice clean look that is gotten with ammoniated cleaning solutions. We're still working on the third workshop - more details to follow in a separate mailing.

You will note several changes to the mart and registration forms, this is in line with The Chapter Presidents urgings to improve the operation of the meetings in order to provide you,The Members with a more efficient Chapter Meeting. Some notes of explanation may be necessary, with regard to the chapter Mentor program announced at the last meeting, if any member needs an introduction to a qualified member on any Horological subject matter, mark your registration form "yes", or introduce yourself at the Chapter mart table in the mart room. Please sign the mart regulations form.

The Chapter President has introduced a policy for younger members to accompany the parent to the Chapter meeting. One child, under 13 years will be admitted free.If you are taking advantage of this offer, please mark your registration form, so that the child is included in the luncheon count.

Who's who in todays meeting:-

Ed Ueberall

Ed Ueberall has recently retired from plant scheduling for a manufacturer of photographic film and paper. He holds a bachelors and masters degree in management from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. He is now devoting his full time to his business of over twenty years, restoring pocket watches,especially those grades which were approved or use on North American railroads.

Ed is a member of Chapters #1 and #55.

Kent Singer

Kent Singer has been collecting railroad watches for over twenty years. His profession, centered around industrial machinery, made the fine mechanisms in watches irresistible. Kent's interest grew out of his research into railroad operations and its history. His search through the railroad brotherhood journals brought about Chapter #55's donation to the NAWCC Library of the 1922 film, "The Story of a Watch".

Both Kent and Ed have co-authored articles in the Bulletin- the Elgin 571 articles in 1995 and 1996; and their regular monthly feature, "The Railroaders' Corner".

Steven Sanborn

Steve Sanborn has been a member of NAWCC since 1959. He joined at the age of ten, sponsored by Brooks Palmer, a family friend.

After school hours Steve was apprenticed to a watch and clock repairman in Winchester, Mass.

When his mentor passed away Steve inherited the business and continued working the business after school hours.Steve has a bachelors degree in business administration ,He began a career in banking, but left banking in 1976 to open a full time clock repair business. His clientele includes The State of New Hampshire;colleges, and museums, . He was president of New England Chapter #8 1993/94.Steve is also a member of the newly formed Chapter Eight "Old timers"

Willard House and Clock Museum.
The theme for the coming year is "Lighthouse clocks." This is planned for the Fall of 1998.

The news from Willard House reveals lots of activities planned, with the plea for volunteers for a spring clean up/work day (s) in April and May.Volunteers are needed to assist with working in the Clock Shop and performing clock repair demonstrations for museum visitors.If you do not reside near the Grafton you can assist the Museum by repairing clocks in your clock shop for sale in the Museum Shop.

The curator John Stephens also appeals for donations of clocks (running or in need of repairs) clock keys,new/used clock books for sale in the Museum Shop.

Look for the following items at the Willard House mart table. The special display of tools from the Willard house toolroom. The Willard House Video, you may have viewed this splendid video at Chapter Eight video display at the Chapter Table..Also on sale is the recent publication "The Willard House and Clock Museum and the Willard Family Clockmakers ,the book is co-authored by Dr. Robinson,who together with Mrs.Robinson,founded the Willard House and Clock Museum,and Herschel Burt,former curator of the Willard Collection.

The Museum hours are Tuesday -Saturday 10-4; Sunday 1-5 ;closed on Monday. Nawcc members admitted Free.Telephone 508-839-3500.

Do not forget to add your name to the "Improved Timepiece Stamp Petition Drive"

The American Clock & Watch Museum
The museum opens April 1, currently the original 1801 House is being redecorated in the colonial style.

According to Chris Bailey the Staff Horologist of the American Clock and Watch Museum, a new exhibit is opening in June.This will be a professional presentation,a first for the Museum. The exhibit will focus on the story of Eli Terry and the beginning of the mass produced clock and interchangeable clock parts --mass producing --and its influences and changes in the social structures at that time.The exhibit is sponsored by Chapter Eight.

When we "closed" the "newsletter, the content of the special exhibit for the mart room was not finalised,but Dr.Nancy Connelly assures us, it will be"something special".

Charles River Museum of Industry.
Some of the most important events in industrial history happened on the Charles River,just north of Boston.Waltham was one of the birthplaces of the Industrial Revolution, and this region has remained in the fore-front of industrial technology to the present day.

The Museum has several exhibits but one which is of special interest to the horologist is "The Watch Factory." In the middle of the 19th.century, the Waltham Watch Company helped pioneer the American System of manufacture-- mass production with interchangeable parts-which soon became the wonder of the industrial world. Here automatic machinery turned out the first factory made watches, and timepieces for the first time common personal possessions.

The Museum is on Moody Street in Waltham Ma.telephone #617-893-5410

The Museum Of Our National Heritage
Recently Chapter Eight provided some financial support to the Museum to update its Clock collection .Your Chapter has a copy of the catalogue, this can be viewed at the Chapter mart table.

The Museum is well worth a visit and is located at Marrett Road in Lexington MA.The telephone number is 617-861-6559.

Chapter meetings in 1998:

May 23, 1998 ----------------------Willard House Workshop
June 06,1998---------Boxborough Woods
August 08,1998------Boxborough Woods
September--1998----Annual Symposium (no date established)
October 10 1998----Boxborough Woods

Chapter Eight Council

President: Robert L. Merrill
Past President Dr.Edmond Cooley
1st.Vice Presiden Lawrence Chelmow 2nd.Vice President Joseph Delaney:
Treasurer: Robert Frishman Secretary Brian Wilcox

Joseph Brown: William Gray Eberly: George Grant Richard Hauck
John Lelieve John Tuckwood

Associate Directors Wayne Paskerian & Philip Plourde

Return to Ch 8's Home Page.

The right to download and store or output the articles in Price-Less Ads is granted to users for their personal use only. Any other reproduction, by any means - mechanical or electronic - without the express written permission of Price-Less Ads is strictly prohibited.

Copyright © 1998 Price-Less Ads TM. All rights reserved.

Send comments on this web site to Ron Price