Requires Photography

Deaccessioned February 26, 2015

Shelf clock

Aaron Willard (1757–1844)

Object Place: Roxbury, Massachusetts, United States


Overall: 83.8 x 34.3 x 15.9 cm (33 x 13 1/2 x 6 1/4 in.)

Accession Number


Medium or Technique

Mahogany, white pine, painted dial and brass works






Face signed: "A * WILLARD"

In pencil on front of backboard, behind clock mechanism: "Melrose Highlands Mass. / May 1st MDCCCXCIX / ____________ / Bought in 1850 / by A. H. Lydston / It was undoubtedly over 50 years / old at that time / Geo. D. Orton"

Numerous inscriptions relating to repairs on brass back plate, including:
"Cleaned by E. Taber Dec, 4, 1837
Ditto Ditto April 25, 1843
Ditto T. Taber Jan. 31, 1853
Cleaned by T. Taber Dec. 29, 1854
Cleaned by T. Taber Aug, 1858
Cleaned by [illegible] Feb. 18, 1964
Cleaned by Albert McIntosh Sept. 17, 1872
Ditto C. McIntosh, Oct. 11, 1886
Cleaned by Baker, Sept. 10, 1892
OS [?] Zara March 20, 1920"


By tradition, acquired in the 1840s by the donor's family as "payment for services rendered," possibly by George D. and Emily S. Orton and/or Alfred J. and Jane Lydston; 1918. by descent in the family to the donor, William L. Orton, South Harwich, Massachusetts; 1983, gift of William L. Horton (Accession Date January 11, 1984). February 26, 2015, deaccessioned by the MFA for sale through Northeast Auctions, Portsmouth, New Hampshire.

Credit Line

Gift of William L. Orton in memory of George D. and Emily S. Orton and Alfred J. and Jane Lydston and families