Antique Treasure Hunting

A Long Sought After Clock

Nothing quite compares to inheriting a wonderful antique piece from a beloved family member and having an immediate connection to the history of the piece. But the thrill of finding a treasure on your own and making it a part of your own story can be just as rewarding. Sometimes you are on the hunt for that certain piece, many times searching for years before suddenly seeing it across the way and knowing you have finally found it. That was the case with the Danish Horologe I found in the Les Puces de Saint-Ouen in Paris after literally searching for the perfect Scandinavian tall clock for over 35 years. The shape, the patina, the size- everything about it was exactly what I had imagined. I knew I had to have that clock! 

 The Danish clock when I first spotted it in Les Puces.   

The Danish clock when I first spotted it in Les Puces.

 

 The reddish patina underneath the chipped away white paint sold me on this piece!

The reddish patina underneath the chipped away white paint sold me on this piece!

 

The dealer had other Danish and Swedish clocks, but the reddish hue on the under layer  blended with the top coat of Scandinavian white was the perfect patina. The top and bottom seemed a bit heavier than the others in the booth and the yellowed clock face held the stories of the over 200 years of providing time to those in Denmark,and who knows where else, before landing in Paris and now in Chattanooga, TN. 

 Vintage Glass from California replaced the face shattered during shipment.   

Vintage Glass from California replaced the face shattered during shipment.

 

 

I may end up keeping it for myself, but for now it is at Southside Antiques waiting for someone  else to fall in love with it. The glass face was broken during shipment from France, but has been replaced with vintage glass shipped from California. It is a perfect fit. I am trying to get the works to function again and am told that all the works are original except the pendulum. We are hunting for the correct hinged pendulum which is the key to it working again. I love the clock just the way it is now, but to hear it chime would be wonderful.

An Unexpected Find

 My Pine Trunk houses photo albums and keepsakes.   

My Pine Trunk houses photo albums and keepsakes.

 

While the clock is a recent find that was sought after for many years, the small trunk in my keeping area was one of my first purchases that just spoke to me when I saw it. I was 25 years old, just starting to practice law and enjoyed spending some free time browsing in antique shops. I couldn’t afford most pieces I saw, but this small trunk with initials carved in the top was something I could financially handle. I loved it even though I had never thought about getting a trunk.

 The leather straps and metal braces add to the character of this piece.   

The leather straps and metal braces add to the character of this piece.

 

Actually, it is more of a chest than a trunk. It resembles a treasure chest with the main box resting on an apron with leather straps on either side for carrying. The top is beveled up to a one plank flat surface with carvings on top. The knob on the lid is white enamel rather than a lock and key. It was quickly put into service as my coffee table in my apartments in Greenville and Savannah and has occupied a prominent spot in every den or kitchen I have had over the years. Currently it is front and center under an ice block table in my keeping area and houses special photo albums and scrapbooks while designer books  and sawgrass basket rest on top.

 Carving on the top plank.   

Carving on the top plank.

 

 

 

 I wonder who JWT was?   

I wonder who JWT was?

 

I often wonder who carved the initials JWT and why? Was it used for toys or for writing supplies and books. I like that possibility. When and why was it given up? How many others have had it in their own story? I will just have to imagine its provenance before becoming a part of my own story over 30 years ago.