The Ithaca Calendar Clock Company
The Ithaca Calendar Clock Company began business in 1865 in Ithaca, New York. The company was formed by Henry B. Horton, Charles D. Johnson, Harvey Platts, and John H. Selkreg. Henry B. Horton held the patent for the new calendar clock. The company started with little capital investment but quickly grew and in 1866 moved to a new location and a joint-stock corporation was formed. The company’s rapid growth continued and in 1874 started building a new three-story building and the company moved to the new location the following June. Unfortunately, the new building burned down on February 12, 1874, but a factory was built that still stands today. At the company’s height, they were one of the largest employers in Ithaca. The company’s sales started to decline due to paper calendars and the cost of the calendar clock being three times that of an ordinary clock. The Ithaca Calendar Company filed for bankruptcy on March 14, 1917, after 50 years in business.
The varieties and design styles seem almost endless with Ithaca Calendar Clocks. There are well over 40 different models including bank clocks, shelf clocks, grandfather clocks, and regulators. Their sizes ranged from 16 inches high to 72 inches. 1872 they introduced their first grandfather clock and they remain popular till today. The designers and craftsmen used a variety of wood including cherry, walnut, ash, and mahogany. There were three movements offered: an 8 day time and strike, 15 day time only, and 30 day time only. The customer had several ways to customize their clock by adding features such as shelves, alarms, or by the finish. The company employed highly skilled cravers that created breathtaking hand-carved cases. The clocks and styles varied greatly but the quality of clocks still stand the test of time.
Ithaca Clocks remains popular today with collectors. The highly popular models include office hanging figure 8, 10 farmers, #3 ½ parlor, early farmers curve top, shelf Belgrade cottage #6, and the library octagon. The Belgrade one is our favorite but the Ithaca box skeleton is absolutely fabulous and rare.