Friday, 20 August 2004
Longcases With Historical Links
CREDIT: © John Blaylock/Personal home page
WHERE: Longtown, Cumbria, England. WHAT: Blaylock clock & watch making dynasty.
MAPS: Longtown. Thumbnail pops-up source page with larger image.
Longtown sits by the River Esk, close to the English Border with Scotland. Like many towns, before the Industrial Revolution ended distributed manufacturing as economies of scale became predominant, Longtown had its own local clock and watch making family business. The dynasty was founded by the first John Blaylock (1736-1803), who was living in nearby Carlisle when Bonnie Prince Charlie's army took the city. An early Blaylock clock, probably from around 1767, is our feature picture for today. See it on The Blaylock Clockmakers of Longtown & Carlisle in the Old County of Cumberland, England, a web site authored by another John Blaylock, resident of Derby in Derbyshire, England, where the Prince's army began its retreat northwards.
The later John Blaylock is a non-professional horologist and Associate Member of the British Horological Institute. He made another longcase clock, whose movement won first prize in the 1995 British Horological Institute competition for hand made clocks. The resonances between the two clocks gave us chills: we think they would make a fine pair displayed together. This is one of those web sites where the author's enthusiasm makes the subject compelling, even for non specialists.
For some 19th century Longtown local history, culled from the now defunct Carlisle Journal (1801-1968) and Carlisle Patriot (1815-1910) newspapers, we recommend a visit to Bridget Casson's web site. We remember watching the Journal being printed, in the days before independent voices were routinely stifled, or sold their souls to Citizen Kane. Bridget will also take you on a photographic tour of Longtown and District. The Arthuret Parish Council web site represents the modern activities of the town.
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Jules Laforgue (1860-1887)
"Ah! que la vie est quotidienne."
Oh, what a day-to-day business life is.
'Complainte sur certains ennuis' (1885)