Ticking Since 1889
A century before solid-state technology brought wristwatches to the masses — when only the affluent had the luxury of time in their pockets — Judge John Thomas Marriott I commissioned a public clock for the settlers of the Old West settlement Wakefield, Nebraska. Sponsored by local businesses, it was manufactured by the Sidney Advertising Clock Company from New York in 1889.
The Eastlake model mechanical wall clock is six feet tall, has a solid walnut case designed by Chas A. Burr, and features four hand-painted glass galleries. Its patented bottom gallery, invented by Andrew VanWoert Strait, features three revolving cylinders for advertisements. Every 15 minutes, a bell rings and the cylinders rotate to display a new ad.
The clock hung in Marriott Mercantile from 1889 to 1923 and was discovered in the Graves Public Library basement in 1977. The following year, John's grandson, Dr. Charles Montgomery Marriott, acquired and revitalized it.
It was bequeathed to John's great-grandson, Dr. John Thomas Marriott II (left) in 1990, and great-great-grandson, Thomas Marriott (right) in 2005.
Fulfilling John's original dream, it now hangs in the heart of Texas; its tick carrying on his heartbeat.