St. Sepulchre’s third ward clock

In the third ward at St. Sepulchre’s workhouse in 1751, a clock was listed in the inventory. No information is given about the clock other than that it was held in a Wainscot case. Wainscot was a term used for riven oak boards which were used because of their lighter weight as well as desirability in maintaining their shape. Using this basic description, as well as the location of the object, the clock would likely have not been very ornate but rather fairly basic and practical with simple decorations. Images of clocks from that time and location suggest that the oak might have been stained or colored in some way as well. The clock stands out as none of the other ten or so wards have clocks listed. At the same time though, the clock seems like a good symbol for life in the workhouse as it represents the strictly regimented days the residents are subject to. In a museum display, the clock could be used to symbolize pauper life in the workhouse. It can represent the strict timetables residents must adhere to and the long work hours they are subject to. Additionally, the clock would likely have been made by some sort of mechanic or more skilled laborer which were jobs probably out of reach for many of the poor in the workhouse who were subject to intense manual labor.

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