1873 Frank Herschede, the founder of the company, was employed as a
watchmaker in Cincinnati, Ohio at the age of 16. Four years later he
opened his own shop. Shortly thereafter he began to notice the growing
popularity of tall case clocks. In 1885 he began to import and sell
clocks with movements made by the Elliot Company. Around this time J.
Harrington of England had patented his invention of the tubular bell
chime. Having recognized the popularity of this new method of producing
the chime tones for large clocks he began to purchase and distribute
clocks of this type. After 1902 he began to produce the tubular bell
chimes on his own and install them in Herschede clocks. Also in 1902
his son Walter joined the firm and the company was officially
incorporated as the Herschede Hall Clock Company.
They now began
to display their clocks at expositions and received gold and silver
medals in St. Louis in 1904. Many people who have Herschede clocks have
a small plaque inside the front door to their clock that notes this
accomplishment. As a re- sult of seeing this plaque many people think
that it is their specific clock that won that particular award. This is
not true. This plaque simply reminds the purchasers of these fine
clocks that the company that made them was an award winning company.
The date on the plaque is also not reliable in dating their specific
clock. The date on the plaque simply indicates when the Herschede
Company won the award.
In 1910, at the urging of his son
Walter, Frank Herschede began producing his own tubular bell clock
movements. At this time they began to call their clocks "Crown Hall
Clocks" and adopted the familiar crown trademark.
In 1926, the Revere Clock Company was set up to manufacture electrically driven clocks, including both mantle and floor models.
1929 sales reached their all time high of $1,200.000 but by the time of
the stock market crash in October of that same year sales had fallen to
Continued decline of the clock business led the
company to begin making parking meters in 1936. Later, during World War
II, Herschede began supplying the U.S. military with defense related
Around 1959-60 the company moved from Cincinnati, Ohio to Starkville, Mississippi.
a time of financial trouble the company was sold in 1967 to John R.
Arnold, a furniture maker and subsequently to Howard W. Klein of St.
As noted earlier the company folded completely in 1984.
Fortunately, a gentleman in Ohio purchased all the equipment necessary
to continue to make replacement parts for the Herschede tubular bell
clock movement and is still in business today.
material: Herschede Clocks, A Selection From Four Catalogues,
published by the American Clock and Watch Museum, Inc. Brief History
written by D.J. Blackwell.