Chicago Time Lock Company, Chicago, Illinois, Marsh
model 2, v.2
This was the second version of the Marsh model 2. The case has been changed for
use within a Cannonball safe, adding a half-metal door with eyelets for the
winding arbors. A fourth hole would be present if there was the optional
to hold the wound time lock open during business hours, see prior example of
Marsh model 2, v.1.(1) The
manufacture of the case was also changed where all of the movement mounting
points were cast into the case rather than being separately riveted posts to
rear of the case. A separate rear mounting flange was added for the Cannonball
Safe installation taking the place of
mounting holes drilled directly in the case rear as in version 1, see below.
The nickel plate with acid-etched daisy flower design was quickly replaced with
a plain satin bronze or nickel. In fact, this example is the only one
with this case design
this author has seen outside of the Harry C. Miller collection,
Nicholasville, KY. (see photo below). Production
records for Chicago Time Lock are not known to survive.
The patent referred to on the dials is the same as that illustrated for their
Marsh model 1. That's interesting since there are many differences in the design
of the time lock movements between the Marsh model 1 and this one. Even the
snubber bar and movement levers are very different. Perhaps the patent
designation was there to act as a protection against litigation, though by this
time most of that activity had greatly diminished.
Marsh model 2 v.2, c.1903. Beginning after 1900, the Chicago Time
Lock Co. debuted the first production time lock that offered a ninety-six
hour power reserve. This was based on a design by Earnest Marsh for which
he was awarded a patent. The movements do not have a makers attribution, but
are thought to have been made by the Hampden Watch Co. or perhaps its parent Deuber Watch Co., both of Canton, Ohio. The design of and engraving of the
escapements is consistent of movements made by these companies at this time.
This movement features a platform escapement
that is fully interchangeable between movements. Parts within any platform,
however, are not interchangeable between platforms. This is why all parts
within the platforms are numbered. There are no identifying numbers for the
rest of the movement containing the the drive train. I have not tried it,
but I doubt that parts are interchangeable between the drive trains. Most
other time lock makers used some form of platform escapement with the
exception of Sargent & Greenleaf. This probably not a coincidence since
other makers relied on outside movement makers such as Seth Thomas and
before 1902, E. Howard who used platform escapements in their movements.
Other exceptions to this are those makers that used 'off the shelf'
pocket watch movements, the first examples are the
B through E series (Waltham), then later
(Elgin, South Bend),
Dustproof (Illinois), and
Mosler (Illinois, Waltham, Recta).
6 1/2" w x 4 1/2"h x 2 3/4"d. Case #A106, movements #206, #207 and #208. file
Below is the only other
example this author has seen of any version of the Marsh model 2 with the
acid etched, daisy design, nickel plate case (although there surely are
others) and is from the Harry C. Miller collection, Nicholasville, Kentucky. Note the
missing plating on the door above the first time lock on the left, circled
area, in a
similar location to to the example illustrated above. Perhaps Chicago Time
Lock had unsatisfactory results with the plating company for this
particular finish and for that reason it was quickly discontinued. In other
time locks with this type of finish there is often evidence of damage
consistent with corrosion and wear but rarely from entire sections of the plate lifting
away from the case's base metal. This indicates an improper base metal
preparation before the plating process. The second photo shows a side by
side comparison of a Chicago time lock dial next to the successor company's,
Diebold. The Chicago enamel finish as well as the artwork are less refined
indicating a change in the enameling supplier.
The case for the Marsh model 2 quickly evolved. The first photo is from the
example illustrated and is case #A106. Notice the split mark around the
inside perimeter and is highlighted by the fact that the lower half has a
gold paint application. The movement mounts are integrally cast within the
lower section. A careful examination reveals that the case was made in two
sections. The second photo shows the same style split glass door model, case
#A148. By this time the case itself is milled from a single casting
and the movement mounts were separate posts and riveted into the back of the
The lever set connects the bolt dog through the side of the case whereas the
model illustrated dogs from below the case.
The first close up of the case corner reveals the witness marks for a mated
pair of pieces for the case. Notice how the lower half has a corner that is
square and deeper than the rounded corner above. If this were one cast
piece, that sharp corner would have carried through and the material would
not have been available to make the less shallow rounded corner above. The
second photo is the later case showing a conventional milling of the bronze
casting as seen in most time lock cases.
One of the movements had a broken roller jewel, left. The escapement wheel,
right, illustrates how dirty and full of crud the movement was. I found two
dead bugs so I guess one could say the movement was buggy.
microscope camera is useful to capture close up shots as well as using the
jeweler's loupe on top of a still cameral lens. In this case I was lucky in
that the broken jewel had quite a bit of its length left above the roller
table, so it was a simple procedure to soften the shellac and carefully push
the remaining spare length down to the surface of the roller table top. Then
the jewel was reinforced with a tiny application of super glue on both sides
of the table. There was enough jewel material to reach through the pallet
fork and after the remaining mechanism was cleaned it started right up and
runs perfectly. If the jewel had been too damaged, then a replacement jewel
would have been necessary.
The repaired jewel is in place and the remaining parts are ready for
Nineteenth Century Bank Locks and Time Locks, David Erroll & John Erroll,