The grandfather clock was a long time coming. Galileo first designed a basic clock pendulum in 1583, but very little was done with this technology until Christiaan Huygens, a Dutch astronomer and inventor, created the first real pendulum clock in 1656, when he designed a clock protected  inside a large wooden case that allowed it to stand upright and swing freely. The clocks were called Long Case Clocks and even Coffin Clocks, until British manufacturers decided on the more family-friendly label of Grandfather Clocks, which we know and love today.

Initially, Grandfather Clocks were beautiful and valuable, but they kept poor time. By the 1670s, however, clock-makers discovered that longer pendulums made for more accurate time. Grandfather Clocks grew taller as they grew more precise. In the early 1700s, George Graham discovered the last pieces of the puzzle; by developing a more efficient and precise escapement (a design still used today), and better controlling for the temperature changes within the clock, Graham created a refined and beautiful Grandfather Clock which also kept time within a second’s accuracy per day.

Today, Grandfather Clocks are still valuable for their beauty, longevity, and craftsmanship. As a heirloom, they can connect generations within a family, serving a functional, familiar role as the timekeeper of the house for years to come. No other item in the home can connect us with our past while marking out our time into the future. The mellow chimes of a grandfather clock offer a regular, friendly reminder of the passing of time. The Tick Tock Shop has over 60 Grandfather Clocks in stock and on display:

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