The Vulliamy dynasty began when Justin Vulliamy ca. 1710-1790 emigrated from Switzerland in 1730 and formed a partnership with Benjamin Grey, 1676-1764 whose daughter he married. During this partnership the company produced consistantly high quality bracket and longcase clocks (see lot 57) and some exceptional watches.
Justin had two sons, Benjamin and Benjamin Lewis, 1780-1854; both continued to produce high quality work but it was Benjamin Lewis who really excelled. Like other great clockmakers before him Benjamin Lewis made certain that all his clocks were made to exacting and consistantly high standards by using only the best materials from such illustrious companies as the Matthew Boulton foundry.
Vulliamy also had the ability to foster the very best clients who included many of the rich aristocracy. His most famous and lucrative client was George, Prince of Wales to whom Vulliamy supplied numerous clocks and furnishings for the interior decoration of Carlton House, the Prince of Wales' London residence. The entries in the Lord Chamberlain's records listing the furbishment of Carlton House record numerous pages of items supplied by Vulliamy not only from his workshop but also from the London auction houses.
The present clock was made in one of four different wood cases, rosewood, sanderswood, mahogany, (see lot 206) and ebony.
An entry in the Vulliamy workshop books for a similar example, Charles Allix op. cit, p. 243, gives an interesting insight into the craftsmen and out-workers, most of whom (if not all) would have worked on No. 1145;
Eight Day Balance Clock in Rose wood Case
1830 June 30 Brownly the case French pold 3 4
Brownly the outer case 16 6
May 18 Bramah four pieces of plate
to cover mens time grinding
and flatting 4 6
1831 July 10 Holmdn. the Movement with
oblong engraved silver dial
engraved above and below the
sides. Detatched Leaver Escapement
expansion curb, pin holes of Est.
jewelled going fuzee & chains
bell spring on a cock, the platform
and cocks gilt, double rack (?) to
the (??) foot joind to lifting
piece and roller jumper 27. 16. 6
1831 Apl 13 Philips Esq. dial
1834 May 18 Turner silvering dial 1 6
10 Brownly repairing the case 6 6
28 brownly putting ebony escutcheons
to key holes 4 -
21 Bramah filling two silver
plates in the top
phillips making bell spring etc.
Deld. to Shafto Adair Esq.
May 23 1834