Baveux/Jacot Carriage Clock for James Grohe
A one-piece carriage clock in the style of Garnier Series I, made by the Baveux workshops for James Grohé, London.
The eight-day duration movement has a gilded platform lever escapement with plain brass balance and strikes the hours and half-hours on a bell, with push button repeat of the last hour at will. The movement backplate is stamped with the clock serial number 391 and engraved with the retailer's name Grohé, London.
The movement can be firmly attributed to the workshops of Louis Baveux having all the unique features as seen on clocks from their Saint-Nicolas-d'Aliermont premises. Baveux were supplying Henri Jacot at this time and my research suggests that the workshop was a part of the Jacot concern, with this clock being a typical Jacot of the period. Unique movement features include the repeat work system; the contrate wheel depthing utilising a steel end-piece adjusted by screwing the plates so they become deeper or shallower; the double-finned dial-plate pillars, the curved underdial bridge; the distinctive hand-setting arrow style; the steel underdial strike-work; the pear-shaped cam for setting-off the strike along with the general wheel layout. The movement pillars are held to the frontplate with countersunk screws rather than the normal rivetted arrangement, this being similar to others by Baveux including 297.
This case style is one used by both Baveux and Jacot at this period as noted by almost identical examples retailed by Dent in London and from the Baveux workshop. It is also near-identical to Series I Paul Garnier cases at a time when Garnier was supplied by Holingue Frères as mentioned in the notes below.
The white enamel dial has black Roman hour numerals, dots to the outer aspect and blued steel trefoil hands. The rear of the dial has a V written in red ink being that of the dial émailleur Etienne Valet and whose signature is also noted on clocks signed for Jacot at this time.
Complete with the original early style travelling box and the Jacot-style numbered winding key.
A newspaper article I came across whilst researching Baveux gave a founding date for the business as 1847, which would corresspond with Baveux number 81 having the year 1849 engraved on it and therefore placing this example, 391, as made circa 1853-55. This would be correct going by the style of the clock and when compared to others of a similar style and type.
Grohé seems to have been supplied by Raingo Frères in the earlier years as noted by a letter in my archive sent from Grohé to them and which is available to view below. This example would suggest that he then procured carriage clocks from Baveux/Jacot before switching to Holingue Frères and thereafter Alfred Drocourt following the latter's takeover of the Holingue business. It is possible that he was having carriage clocks made by both Baveux and Holingue at the same time as Grohé 381 has a Holingue movement with the blanc-roulant number 1793 which would date to circa 1853/54.
A letter I wrote to the Horological Journal in November 2019, in relation to a Grohé clock sold at auction, gives an outline of this arrangement and the numbering system used,. This can be read by clicking the following link:
Some notes on the James Grohé business
James Grohé, sometimes John James was born in Germany in 1803 but became a naturalised British citizen. He died in 1872.
He was the successor to the well-known chronometer maker Charles Haley, established in the late eighteenth century, at 7 Wigmore Street, Cavendish Square, London with Grohé known to have started in business in circa 1832. He often utilised both movements and clocks made by Dent.
About 1862, or 1863, the Pennington Typke workshop moved to the Grohé premises at 7, Wigmore Street when John Pennington and Herman William Typke (born 1821) bought the James Grohé business.
John Pennington of London (not the maker from Liverpool) is shown in the 1856 Post Office Directory in the Watch Makers and Chronometer Makers sections at 11 Portland Row, Camberwell Road, London.
Pennington had quite probably realised that marine chronometer sales had become stagnant and the competition to make them too fierce. As such, he began making and retailing other types of clocks which was boosted by the takeover of the Grohé business.
Pieces made after 1862 but before 1882 have various signatures such as Grohé, Pennington & Typke successors, but some may still have Grohé on them without the successors name.
After John Pennington’s death in 1882 the signature becomes Grohé H. W. Typke successor although the firm inherited maintenance work on some old Pennington chronometers which they worked on until Mr Typke’s retirement either post 1900, or his death in 1909.
Herman William Typke was a retailer of chronometers at 24 Wigmore Street from before 1890 until 1900, although see note below, and then at 3a Wimpole St from 1900. One clock with the Grohé name as part of the signature has a label to the base giving the address as 24 Wigmore Street.
Pennington and Typke are shown in the 1882 Post Office Directory in the Watch Makers and Chronometer Makers section as being at 24 Wigmore St. This was probably after Typke moved but before Pennington's name was removed from the business.
Oddly, an online Encyclopedia of Famous Clock & Watchmakers by an anonymous author gives James Grohé at 40 Wigmore Street in 1840. A possible mistake or a yet unrecorded address?
For further details of Drocourt and Holingue Frères see my 2014 Exhibition catalogue: Pierre & Alfred Drocourt: An Exhibition of Carriage Clocks, and for Hanri Jacot and his family see my 2013 Exhibition Catalogue: Henri Jacot: An Exhibition of Carriage Clocks, both available via the Catalogues button above.
Height: 6½ inches (16.2 cms) Handle up
Click on slide show below to view full images
Baveux Grohe 391 underside
Note the letter is not included in the sale of the clock