I picked up this little Westclox America for $12 in filthy condition. After some cleaning and polishing it’s mostly shiny again. Pulled the guts out and wiped up some old dirt and oil with lighter fluid and Q-tips, then proceeded to put some tiny drops of oil wherever I could access bearings. The clock face was so fragile I didn’t disassemble it further, but either way it began ticking, and I tested the alarm too. Rather jolly little jingle. Been running for a few hours now and hasn’t lost any time yet.
Some internet searching tells me this variety of the America was made from around 1918 to 1927. The original model was introduced in 1895, and few changes were made through 1932 when it got a total redesign.
I sort of like the character of alarm clocks. They literally have one job to do. Unlike other timepieces, these are not about ostentation or precision. You wind it up before going to bed, it wakes you up in the morning, you go to work, and it fucks off for the rest of the day except maybe to ring again to empty house 12 hours later.
I do kind of wonder what sort of job, whoever had this one, went to c. 1920.