George Kern designed the style 1 Big Ben movement and case. August Schierholtz designed the style
2 case, and Max Schlenker designed the base. Henry Dreyfuss designed the style 3, 5 and 6 cases. The style 4 is a modification of style
3 and may also have been designed by Dreyfuss. Ellworth Danz designed the Style 7, 8 and 9
and the Clock of Tomorrow cases.
Big Ben and Baby Ben Identification Guide
In 1984, my friend Richard Tjarks and I published
the "Westclox Big Ben and Baby Ben Identification Guide" to
go along with the display of Westclox clocks and watches at the NAWCC
National Convention in Indianapolis.
I've added recent research findings and more
material to the guide, and it is available for download in PDF form.
It is available free of charge, although donations are welcome! Jeff
Wood and I are continuing our Westclox research. Jeff is particularly
interested in early baby Ben and Big Ben history, while I am putting
together information about Big Ben and Baby Ben variations.
The current version of the ID guide is dated January 14, 2012. The updates are: information about the Baby Ben style 7 made in 1976, and the brass case/celluloid dial Big Ben style 1.The file is about 21 megabytes, so it may take a little
while to download.
29, 2009, and contains an update to the style 1a Big Ben reproduction
made about 1970.
June 8, 2008. Additional material included patents, reproductions and
Big Ben and Baby Ben electric clocks.
Dates Stamped on Big Ben and Baby Ben Movements
Dates were stamped on a movement plate of most Big Ben and Baby Ben
alarm clocks. Numbers are used for the month, day and year; or just
the month and year (e.g. 5 17 15 is May 17, 1915; and 7 34 is July 1934).
Baby Bens have month, day and year from the beginning through the end
of 1928; just the month and year from 1929 through 1932; month, day
and year from 1933 through 1944; and then just the month and year again
from 1945 on.
Big Ben style 1 clocks have the month, day and year stamped on the
Big Ben style 1a and 2 clocks have month, day and year through 1928;
and just month and year from 1929 on.
Big Ben Loud Alarm clocks have the month and year stamped on the movement.
Big Ben Chime Alarm clocks have the month and day up through 1932;
month, day and year from 1933 through World War II; and just month and
year from WWII through the end of production (1956).
Big Ben single key wind clocks (1956 on) have the month and year stamped
on the movement.
Actual transition dates I have observed on clocks:
Month, Day and Year up to 12-15-28
Month and Year from 3-29 to 3-32
Month, Day and Year from 1-26-33 to 19-2-44
Month and year starting 5-45
Big Ben Style 1, 1a, 2, 4 and Loud Alarm
Month, Day and Year up to 10-16-28
Month and Year starting 2-29
Big Ben Single Key Wind (styles 7 and 8)
Month and Year
Big Ben Chime Alarm
Month and Year from 5-31 to 12-32
Month, Day and year from 1-25-33 to 12-5-41
Month and Year from 2-46 to the end (1956)
Clock of Tomorrow
Month and Year