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windex's avatar

What were some of the most popular wall clocks in the 1970's and 1980's?

Asked by windex (2921 points ) June 19th, 2011

What were some of the most popular wall clocks in the late 70’s early 80’s for a middle class family?

I’ve been looking at Sears and JCPenny catalogs from that era but nothing stands out.

If it’s something with a cabinet/door/window and/or a pendulum (not a requirement) it would make me very happy. The grandfather clocks, although the most esthetically pleasing for the personal project I’m doing, look too expensive. And the fictional middle class family in my story would not have been able to afford it.

Thanks for your time. I’ve emailed some of the companies but haven’t gotten a reply yet.

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10 Answers

zenvelo's avatar

The most popular were probably Sunbeam brand electronic clocks. Yes, they did have a cord coming down behind them. This was the 60s. Clocks with an AA battery weren’t really around much until the 80s.

WasCy's avatar

There were a lot of wall clocks that had a three-pronged plug set into the back, meant to be plugged in to a special wall socket that had a recess to match the plug. My folks bought a new house in 1964 (and it was no McMansion of the day; they shopped price and value, and when we moved in we hardly had furniture to fill half the rooms) and I recall that wall socket in the kitchen very well, and the clock we had there. (Not a ‘popular’ style for the day. I’ve never seen another like it.)

One of the popular styles of clock I recall from the day was a sunburst design, in all kinds of variations.

john65pennington's avatar

Sunburst clocks were very popular in the 50s. Their popularity carried over into the 60s and 70.

My mother had a beautiful gold sunburst clock that was made in Germany. No batteries. A wind up clock.

Its as pretty today as it was 50 years ago.

aprilsimnel's avatar

We had one very much like this one in our kitchen from the mid-70s to about 1984. Then we used the clock on the microwave after that.

faye's avatar

We had a white clock face with copper colored edging, about 8 inches across, with a cord running down the wall. My mom was still using it when she died in 2007.

Kardamom's avatar

In the early 70’s I begged my parents for a plastic school house clock. They always had them on display at places like Gemco and Fedmart and Montgomery Wards. They looked like the little red one room school houses. I finally got one for my birthday and I loved that clock so much. Wish I still had it. I cannot seem to find a photo of one that’s similar.

In the late 70’s I had a pre-digital clock that had numbers that “flipped” over the other when the minutes and hours changed. It had a small white plastic housing and kind of looked like a space-age kind of shape. It was not square, so much as it was square-ish with rounded corners. Here is an image of the flip-style numbers, but I can’t find a picture of a similar clock housing.

anartist's avatar

Knock-offs of older clocks known as regulator clocks [with pendulums although the later 20th c pendulums served no purpose] were popular then and are still available today.

The original regulator clocks, sometimes referred to as pendulum clocks, were invented in the late 18th century in a quest for greater timekeeping accuracy. They were weight-driven devices and featured a deadbeat escapement (an improvement on the anchor design). To ensure their accuracy, they usually omitted complicated features like calendars. Instead, each of the clock’s hands worked off a different mechanism.

anartist's avatar

However, my vote is for the 1950s Kit Kat clock with the wagging tail and moving eyes which they might have inherited or bought because it was “camp”—My uncle’s family had one in his kitchen right above the “who’s in the doghouse?” board with labelled dogs for each family member

re-regulator clocks—antiques are cheaper than new!!!
of course, how antique? This Howard Miller regulator [neat clock] is likely 20th century

ShanEnri's avatar

The Felix the Cat wall clock with the moving tail was popular back then! Here’s a link to show you…
http://www.amazon.com/s/?ie=UTF8&keywords=cat+clock+with+moving+tail&tag=googhydr-20&index=aps&hvadid=3487878617&ref=pd_sl_64ipwifuc4_b"

SuperMouse's avatar

My mother was a clock freak in the 70’s. Our house had a cuckoo clock, a couple of Regulator knock-offs, a Felix the Clock, and a couple of other very cheesy, ornate jobbies. One had a statue of a woman on a platform with strings surrounding her that had oil dripping down them. There was another one with a picture of an animated waterfall. I did google image searches for both of those, but could not find anything.

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