Thomas Knowles was born in 1657 and made clocks in Bolton up to 1787, where he died making a will recorded in the Probate Registry Chester.
He is listed as being in the Jury Service list for Great Bolton in 1778
Salford Museum held one of his clocks for many years until it was transferred to Bolton Museum, where it is displayed in the Norris Room in Hall i’th Wood where it is on permanent display to the public.
An 18th Century 13″ Brass Dial 8 Day longcase with arched dial and rolling moon signed Thomas Knowles Bolton, in a Mahogany Lancashire Chippendale case.
The clock has an Eight-day rack strike movement which strikes the hours on a bell. There is provision for hour, minute, seconds, date and moon phase and age indication. The dial is of brass with an open arch for the moon phase disc-dial. It is signed on a plate which runs over the arch. The dial chapter ring has engraved, wax-filled roman hour numerals, Arabic minute numerals and Arabic date numerals. The latter on the inner edge of the chapter ring. The dial centre is engraved with a lattice design and has a recess for the seconds ring in the upper portion. The dial is furnished with a matching set of four rococo spandrel corner pieces. The moon phase disc-dial has engraved, wax-filled Arabic numerals around its edge for age of the moon indication. The case is of mahogany on oak carcass. It has fluted columns to the hood and trunk. There are applied frets to the upper and lower portions of the trunk and to the base. There are three wood finials to the hood and three decorated glass panels below and between the swan neck pediment. There is ‘dog-tooth’ decoration to the hood and trunk top. The rounds of the swan necks contain carved roses. (Photo and detail courtesy of Bolton Museums)
An 18th Century oak 8-day longcase clock, the brass moon-phase rolling dial signed Thomas Knowles.