By Donald Saff. We expect to receive stock of this new book in early May. Available to pre-order.


Years in the research and writing, this magnificent new AHS publication traces the achievements of the remarkable Bond family, who excelled in practical and theoretical work in astronomy, clock design, time distribution, and celestial photography—assisting astronomers to map the sky, sailors to determine longitude at sea, and the New England Railroads to run to time.

At the 1851 Great Exhibition, the Bonds introduced the drum chronograph to the scientific community, combatting the human inaccuracies inherent in observing star transits. The system was greatly admired and universally employed. The Astronomer Royal, Sir George Airy, even coined a term for it: the ‘American Method’.

The book has extensive endnotes, a detailed index and bibliography, and is profusely illustrated with 450 images, mainly in colour (featuring Bond family members, astronomer colleagues, shop drawings, and clocks and chronographs with details) as well as measured drawings of selected Bond clocks. The Appendix list clocks with historical details, advertisements, correspondence, publications, sales notes, servicing records, and a genealogy. The book is of 440 pages, casebound, 270mm x 210mm, in a buckram cloth cover and on 150gsm art silk paper, with head and tail bands and silk ribbon, and a printed dustjacket.

Ch. 1 Commodification of Time
Ch. 2 An Extraordinary Family
Ch. 3 The Family Business
Ch. 4 From Chronometric Expeditions to the Transatlantic Cable
Ch. 5 Time for New England’s Railroads
Ch. 6 Break-Circuit
Ch. 7 Time Service, Electricity, and the Role of Harvard College Observatory
Ch. 8 The Chronograph, The ‘Spring Governor’, and the Conical Pendulum
Ch. 9 Failed Experiments: Isodynamic Escapement and Multiple Pendulums
Ch. 10 Bond’s Variation on Denison’s Escapement
Ch. 11 The Trio: Bond nos. 394, 395 and 396

We are expecting to receive our stock of this new book from the printers in early May. Orders placed now will be fulfilled as soon as we receive stock.


Orders may be placed by telephone and paid for by credit card. Alternatively, please send your order together with the appropriate remittance to:
4 Lovat Lane

Telephone 07733 481595, international +44 7733 481595 (24-hour answering machine)

Cheques should be made payable to 'Antiquarian Horological Society'.
Overseas members may make payment by Sterling draft on a London bank, or credit card (Access / Visa / Mastercard). If paying by US Dollar cheques please add GBP8 to cover bank charges.

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Using the secure servers of PayPal, you are now able to purchase AHS merchandise online using a credit card, debit card or PayPal account. For each item you wish to purchase please select the appropriate membership and postage option from the drop-down menu and click the 'Add to Cart' button for that item. You can change the number of copies required and select your payment option in the resulting PayPal page. Check out there, or select 'continue shopping' and check out later from any 'Your Cart' button.

Please note: Stock of this book is expected in early May, and delivery of all books pre-ordered will be shipped as soon as stock is received.

If you are attending the AHS Annual Meeting at Greenwich on Saturday 18 May 2019, you can save on postage costs by ordering this book in advance to collect at the event. Please contact the office on or 07733 481595 if you wish to take up this offer.

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