Wednesday

The Rolling Eye Clocks of Oswald (circa 1927-1950)

Rolling eye clocks - first patented in 1926 by the J. Oswald Company of Germany with early models carved of wood and cast from metal after World War II. (Time shown above is 2:46)

The dials are represented as the eyes separating the hours on the left and minutes to the right. This collection of cross-eyed genies, skulls, monkeys, gnomes, owls, and dogs (LOTS of dogs) are an interesting cast of antique novelty clocks.

Thanks to Mike from Florida for sending me the Patent information here-->Link

Price ranges are approximately $200-$800 depending on condition and rarity. The authentic models were generally built with 8 day movements. Many cheaper knock-offs have appeared during the sixties and seventies. Likely inspiring the art of kitschy 'Big Eyes' painter Margaret & Walter Keane.

Monkey Clock

Rare Skull Clock

Genie Clock


And one of many crosseyed dogs

From an exhibit in 2005;

"The exact origin and age of these clocks is not easy to determine. We know that they came from Germany, but very few details are available in writing, due to the destruction of records during WWII. For this reason we have to rely on bits and pieces of information gleaned from many sources to come up with some sort of history of these novelty items.Most were made by the Oswald company in the Freiburg area which is in the Black Forest area of Germany. We say most, because we have three rolling eye clocks that we cannot, with certainty, attribute to Oswald. However, a personal friend has a wooden rolling eye clock marked "U.S. Patent 1926 Made in Germany." So, if patents were effective in those days, it is reasonable to assumme that Oswald may have made our "unmarked" ones as well."



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