James Douglass of Chertsey ca 1733 - 1805
His life James Douglass was born around 1730-1733 to John Douglass (unfortunately I don’t know where, though family stories suggest the Douglasses originally came from Scotland). James married Letitia Joyce of Godalming on 20th May 1761 in Godalming, Surrey, and James is already described as watchmaker of Chertsey at this time. Letitia, born in 1733, was the daughter of Joshua Joyce (a baker and formerly Warden of Godalming) and Elizabeth (née Chitty) . James Douglass, 1765-1835 was their son. This James died at Chertsey in 1805.
His business James was apprenticed to Richard Stedman of Godalming for 7 years on 10/10/1747. The apprenticeship refers to his father as John Douglass.
A number of rather fine watches and clocks produced by him have been on sale, illustrated items may be seen (click on the watch to the right).
Other clocks seen for sale without illustrations are: -
An Eight Day
Long Case Clock, by James Douglass, Chertsey, the 11 3/4 inch square silvered
and brass dial with rococo engraved centre, seconds and date, in an oak case of
plain proportions, now 210cm £1000-1500
Estimate 1,000.00GBP - 1,500.00GBP
Georgian mahogany bracket
clock by James Douglas of Chertsey, strike/silent dials, eight day movement,
brass ogee feet (Auctioned in 2003)
(Auctioned in 2003)
clock 462 circular enamel clock, floral decoration in pine cabinet 463 large
trunk ... Mahogany bracket clock by
strike/silent dials, eight day movement.
A GEORGE III LONGCASE CLOCK with a brass dial inscribed ‘Jam. Douglass, Chertsey’, enclosing an eight day striking movement, in an oak case with later carving 78.25in high Estimate - £400-600 (Auctioned in 2005)
A late 18th Century oak longcase clock, the associated eight-day movement with twelve inch square brass dial, signed James Douglas of Chertsey; 210cm high. (Sold 2002)
A George III silver pair cased pocket watch, London 1773, the fusee movement signed Jas Douglas, Chertsey, No.4873; together with ....
18th century oak longcase clock with brass dial inscribed Douglass, Chertsey, fruit, flower and canopy engraving with spandrels, 30 hour movement. 74.5in high. Sold 1997
Baillie, Watchmakers and Clockmakers of the world Vol 1. gives following information: -
The bankruptcy record is confirmed by records at the National Archives in B4/23: Douglass James, Jenkins James and Abbot, 5th Feb 1791
The middle names were either his agent or solicitors or creditors. I have found some information that they were a firm of solicitors at New Inn, London.
The London Gazette carried the Notice: -
The Commissioners in a Commission of Bankrupt awarded and issued forth against James Douglas, of Chertsey in the County of Surry, Clock-maker, intend to meet on the 29th Day of November next, at Eleven in the Forenoon, at Guildhall, London, to make a Dividend of the said Bankrupt’s Estate and Effects ; when and where the Creditors, who have not already proved their Debts, are to come prepared to prove the same, or they will be excluded the Benefit of the said Dividend. And all Claims not then proved will be disallowed.
There are 4 timepieces by James Douglass, and a painting , by James Douglass, of Chertsey clock in Chertsey Museum, at The Cedars, Windsor Street, Chertsey. Not all likely to be on view at one time.
James was based in Guildford Road, Chertsey. See this page
James himself took an apprentice James Front in 29/4/1767.
He signed a settlement certificate on 6.12.1769 for a John Gunnor moving to Woking, as a churchwarden and overseer for the poor.
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