Horology at the Athenæum
Horology, the age-old science of timekeeping, is nicely represented in the Boston Athenæum’s collection, from the two imposing Dutch tall clocks that grace the first floor to print holdings depicting Boston’s Adams House that reveal the adjacent watchmaking shop of Enoch Sutton. Historically important tall clocks in the decorative arts collection deserve our observation, early prints and photographs await our examination, and reference books stand ready on the shelves. Join Athenæum Proprietor Bob Frishman--an horologist living in Andover, Massachusetts--for an overview of the Athenaeum’s horological holdings.
Bob Frishman is an Athenæum Proprietor and the founder of Bell-Time Clocks in Andover, Massachusetts. His passion for horology began in 1980 while working as a speechwriter, press secretary and legislative aide in the US House of Representatives after receiving his BA in political science at George Washington University. Frishman is a Fellow of the National Association of Watch and Clock Collectors, a Freeman of the Worshipful Company of Clockmakers, and Chairman of the NAWCC Time Symposium Committee. His “Horology in Art” symposium at the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, was the first-ever conference focused on many centuries of art images which include clocks and watches.
In 1952 the Boston Athenæum was given an 18th century Dutch tall-case clock that now resides just outside of the Children’s Library. This elaborately decorated brass and silvered metal clock face consists of an idyllic pastoral scene sitting above a swinging pendulum. View this and many other wonderful clocks throughout the building on your next visit to 10½ Beacon.