Style Louis XVI / Ref.12311
J. Bernard-Henri WAGNER - 18th century building clock
Depth: 5'' ⅛ 13cm
Diameter: 58'' ¼ 148cm
France, 18th century
Building clock made by the company J. Bernard Henri WAGNER in the 18th century, wood frame carved with laurel leaves. Revisited in the 19th century with the addition of a zinc plate and a painting of the dial.
In 1790, J. Bernard-Henri Wagner founded a company in Paris to manufacture building clocks. His nephew, Bernard-Henry Wagner, joined his uncle's factory and after a few years took over the management of the family business. Under his leadership, the company diversifies and manufactures various and varied machines, such as meters, calculating machines, metronomes, lightning rods, turn-spindles and weather vanes.
Bernard-Henri Wagner received silver medals for his clocks and inventions at all the exhibitions of French industrial products: 1819, 1823, 1827, 1834, 1839, 1844 and 1849.
On 21 June 1852, Armand-François Collin bought the Bernard-Henry Wagner company, which had become one of the most important edifice watchmaking companies in Paris. In order to develop its production while minimising costs and to take advantage of the watchmaking know-how of the Jura region of Morez and Morbier, he relocated production to Foncine-le-Haut (Jura) in 1859. Armand-François Collin in turn became one of the leading watchmakers on the Paris market. He was rewarded at the universal exhibitions of 1855, 1860, 1867, 1875 and 1878. In 1881, he was awarded a gold medal at the International Electricity Exhibition. In 1867 he made a clock for the Notre Dame de Paris cathedral. The clock mechanism of more than 2 meters, which disappeared in the dramatic fire of April 15, 2019, allowed to tell the time on 4 dials placed in dormer windows in the transept. Still in Paris, it also equips the churches of Saint-Germain-l'Auxerrois and Saint-Augustin, the basilica of Sainte-Clotilde as well as the town halls of the 4th, 11th and 12th arrondissements. Although the manufacture of mechanical clocks remains the core of Collin's business, it is also developing by marketing precision instruments such as tide gauges, fluviographs and metronomes.
The company was sold on 19 August 1884 to Château Frères & Cie. Created in 1790, it will last until about 1935, 145 years later.
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