How to Archive Family Keepsakes Blog Book Tour: Caring for Heirloom Clocks

Guest Post by Denise May Levenick, The Family Curator, author of How to Archive Family Keepsakes (Family Tree Books, 2012).

It’s not surprising that The Heirloom Registry was born when Dan and Mike Hiestand wanted to share the story of their heirloom grandfather clock. Watches, clocks, and timepieces of all shapes and sizes have been favorite family keepsakes for generations.

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Denise Levenick, The Family Curator

Houstory Publishing and I share a common interest in preserving family treasures, and I’m delighted to share a few tips for clock care from my new book How to Archive Family Keepsakes with readers of The Houstory Hearth Blog.

Join the Blog Book Tour for How to Archive Family Keepsakes January 10-26, 2013 for author interviews, book excerpts, giveaways, and more. Visit the Blog Book Tour Page at The Family Curator website for the complete schedule.

 

Saving Time: Caring for Heirloom Clocks

Timepieces are one of the most popular family heirlooms passed on from generation to generation, and with proper care and regular maintenance you can help keep your keepsake watch or clock ticking well into the next century.

Most clocks consist of two distinct parts, the clock itself and the outer case. Grandfather clocks, cuckoo clocks, and mantle clocks are often made of wood and metal parts. Decorative clocks may be constructed from brass, bronze, marble, plastic, or other materials. Wristwatches, pocket watches, and ladies’ brooch watches are usually cased in silver, gold, or a combination of materials.

Denise Levenick, The Family Curator, Houstory, Heirloom Registry, family history, family heirlooms, family keepsakes

If your antique clock isn’t working or keeping the correct time, don’t try to repair or clean the interior workings yourself. Clock repair and maintenance is a specialized skill, and your local jeweler should be able to refer you to a certified clock repair shop. They can also show you how to wind the clock mechanism and recommend a routine for maintenance that will keep it good working order.

Many antique clocks and watches require daily attention to keep running, and this is often the best way to keep the timepiece in working order. Clocks should be cleaned and oiled every two to three years to avoid undue wear of moving parts. If your clock needs replacement parts that are no longer available, or the cost makes repair impractical, enjoy it as an heirloom decorative object.

Care for your clock will depend on its construction material:

 

Wooden Clocks

Like any fine wooden furniture, wooden clocks, are especially susceptible to swelling and shrinking from extreme fluctuations in temperature and humidity. They will do best in a room that is comfortable for everyday living, not too hot, too cold, nor too damp.

Treat wooden clocks as you would fine wooden furniture. Do not use aerosol furniture polish or waxes; instead dust regularly with a soft cloth and use solid paste wax annually to keep the wood clean and supple.

heirloom clock, family heirloom, family history

The grandfather clock that inspired The Heirloom Registry

 

Metal and Stone Clocks

Care for metal and stone cased clocks by dusting and polishing with a soft cloth.

Keep china figural clocks in a glass cabinet if possible to minimize dust and potential damage.

Most clocks contain metal working parts, and will benefit from a clean dry environment.

The best housekeeping is often a routine that is regular and minimally disturbing to the item itself. Keep your heirloom clock in a location where it can be enjoyed, yet is out of the path of likely damage. A living room or dining room can be a better choice than a family room filled with active children and pets.

Working or not, clocks are time-honored family heirlooms and a wonderful reminder of a family legacy.

Find more ideas for sorting and organizing inherited family treasures in How to Archive Family Keepsakes: Learn How to Preserve Family Photos, Memorabilia & Genealogy Records by Denise May Levenick (Family Tree Books, 2012).

Guest Post from How to Archive Family Keepsakes: Learn How to Preserve Family Photos, Memorabilia & Genealogy Records by Denise May Levenick (Family Tree Books, 2012). Copyright, 2012, Denise May Levenick. All Rights Reserved. 

How to Archive Family Keepsakes (Family Tree Books, 2012) ISBN 1440322236
Paperback / eBook Family Tree Books, Amazon.com, Scribd, iBooks, Barnes&Noble.com. 10% Savings Coupon ShopFamilyTree.

 

Join the Blog Tour

Join the Blog Book Tour for How to Archive Family Keepsakes January 10-26, 2013 for author interviews, book excerpts, giveaways, and more. Visit the Blog Book Tour Page at The Family Curator website for the complete schedule.

Proceeds from the sale of How to Archive Family Keepsakes during the Book Tour will help fund the 2013 Student Genealogy Grant founded in 2010 in honor of Denise’s mother, Suzanne Winsor Freeman.

 

Blog Book Tour Giveaways

Comment on daily Book Blog Tour Post
Tweet the Tour Twitter @FamilyCurator #keepsakebooktour
Share the Tour on FaceBook, Google+, Goodreads

It’s easy to enter to win a free copy of Denise’s new book or one of the weekly giveaway prizes. All you have to do is leave a comment to the Blog Tour Post hosted at one of the official tour blogs. Random winners will also be selected from social media comments on Twitter, FaceBook, and Google+.

Each blog tour post comment gives you one chance to win; one entry per post per day, please. Leave a comment at each stop on the blog tour and increase your chances of winning. The lucky names will be announced each Saturday during the tour at The Family Curator.

 

About the Author

In every family, someone ends up with “the stuff.” Denise May Levenick is a writer, researcher, and speaker with a passion for preserving and sharing family treasures of all kinds. She is the creator of the award-winning family history blog, The Family Curator www.TheFamilyCurator.com and author of the new book How to Archive Family Keepsakes: Learn How to Preserve Family Photos, Memorabilia and Genealogy Records, (Family Tree Books, 2012).

12 comments on “How to Archive Family Keepsakes Blog Book Tour: Caring for Heirloom Clocks

  1. Cheri says:

    My husband loves old clocks and has picked up a few from various places. Thank you for the ideas for caring for them.

    • Houstory Publishing says:

      Hi Cheri-Denise knows her stuff, doesn’t she? Thanks for the comment. Have a great day — Dan

  2. Thanks for being a part of this great Blog Book Tour. I’ve loved old clocks ever since I was a small girl and our neighbor had this wonderful clock with a little girl on a swing marking the hour. I’ve often dreamed of that clock! I’m thinking of ‘searching’ for one like it. 🙂

    • Houstory Publishing says:

      Thank you for your comments, Carla. I know what you mean: there is just something about old clocks that draws us in. Good luck with your search!

  3. Anne D says:

    Thanks for the tips on old clocks. I have a couple of antique clocks, and fould the advice helpful.

  4. Thanks Carla. It sounds like you have a treasure hunt in mind. Good luck. And, thank you for joining us on the virtual book tour.

  5. There is an old clock in my family. I remember how thrilled I was as a child to learn how to wind it with the key. Each of my siblings and I are hoping to be the one who inherits it.

  6. Regina Ivie says:

    How cool that the book has information for the precious family heirloom that gave inspiration for your blog. Thanks for joining the book tour.

  7. Lori says:

    I’m glad to learn I’m not the only one that loves old clocks! For some reason, just recently I have come to really love them. I found the old cuckoo clock that used to hang in my house when I was little. It is designed to look like a “Black Forest” clock, but it is from Japan. It doesn’t work anymore, but I just had to have it hanging in my dining room. Thanks for all the tips. I just might be able to get it working yet!

  8. Pam H. says:

    What an eye-opener. We have an old grandfather clock in our family. While it is was purchased new in the 1960s I can see it turning into a family heirloom in the future. I had never thought about that before.

Comments are closed.