Watches & Clocks
In 1854 Aaron Dennison and Edward Howard moved their watch and clock business from Boston to Waltham. Seeking a clean, dust-free environment in which to assemble their precision movements, they built their factory, at the time the world’s largest brick structure, on the banks of the Charles River.
Over the next 100 years, the Waltham Watch Company grew to worldwide renown, producing some 40 million watches and pioneering the method of mass production with interchangeable parts. Waltham watches were affordable, quality products, perfect for the rising American middle class.
In the museum’s Watch & Clock gallery you’ll learn the story of the Waltham Watch Company and how it shaped the future of our country’s manufacturing success (Henry Ford’s visit to the factory inspired his use of the assembly line in automobile manufacturing). Watches, clocks, machine tools, even a vintage watchmaker’s shop – these tell the tale of how Waltham became known as the “Watch City.”
The Exhibit at the Waltham Watch Factory
Visit our newest exhibit in the lobby of the world-renowned Waltham Watch Factory, just a few blocks from the museum. The exhibit provides a captivating overview of the people, ideas, and inventions behind the Watch Company’s climb to prominence – and its tragic decline. The gallery is filled with compelling historical graphics from the museum and Waltham Historical Society, plus key artifacts from the museum and private collections, some not seen publicly in decades.
The exhibit at the Waltham Watch Factory is open to the public Monday – Friday, 9 a.m. – 5 p.m. Admission is free. 211 Crescent Street, Waltham.
Many thanks to Watch Factory LLC, developers of the Watch Factory complex, for making this exhibit possible.