Effingham Embree was a celebrated clock and watchmaker working in the years 1781 to 1797 and one of his tall case clocks is in the White House. Born in Flushing, Long Island in 1759, he served in the New York Militia before the British occupation of New York. He likely learned the clock and watchmaking trade from relative Joseph Pearsall joining as his partner in the firm Pearsall & Embree from 1781 to 1789, prior to establishing his own business. Embree was located at 185 Queen Street and then 275 Pearl Street when he retired in 1797. He seems to have had business dealings with Stephen Van Wyck and their watches are quite similar in quality; Van Wyck continues business after Embree’s retirement at the same location advertising “successor to Effingham Embree, No. 275 Pearl Street” in the New-York Daily Advertiser on May 26, 1797 (Ganczarczyk, 734-741).
 
Effingham Embree Watch
 
Effingham Embree Watch
 
Effingham Embree Watch
 
Effingham Embree Watch

Maker:
Number:
City:
Date:
Effingham Embree
12065 (left) | 790 (right)
New York
1792 (left) | 1793 (right)

Description:
Both examples are fusee movements with verge escapements with round pillars, white enamel dials and gold hands.

Number 12065 is signed Effingham Embree New York and has matching silver pair cases with London assay date mark for 1792 and case maker's mark "IG" (
James Gouldsbrough, London or Joseph Glenny, London). A duty mark of King George III used from 1786 to 1798 is stamped within and indicates that tax was paid on the silver case. "12065" is stamped on the inner case (the outer is pictured below) following the 1785 Statute that specifies that every watch case contain the number of the watch movement (Priestley, 28)

Effingham Embree Watch

Number 790 is signed E. Embree New York and has matching silver pair cases with London assay date mark for 1793 and case maker's mark "BN" with pellet between the initials for Bartholomew Need, Clerkenwell, London. It also has the duty mark of King George III that was used from 1786 to 1798. "790" is stamped on the inner case following the 1785 Statute that specifies that every watch case contain the number of the watch movement (Priestley, 28). Watch paper by Kelsey from Milwood, Ohio located within the case. Embree #790 pictured in Complete Price Guide To Watches, Engle, Gilbert, Shugart (2007) 

Effingham Embree Watch

A movement example of similar quality and estimated date as those shown above. This one is number #5278. It's gold or silver case was scrapped for cash sometime in the last 100 years.
 
Effingham Embree Watch
 
Effingham Embree Watch


References and recommended reading:
  • Mary Ellen Embree LeBien, Embree Remembered, The Extraordinary Lives and Times of Robert and Effingham Embree, 2002
  • Jerzy Ganczarczyk, Stephen Van Wyck English Cylinder WatchesNAWCC Watch & Clock Bulletin, No. 317, (December, 1998), pp. 734-741
  • Philip Priestley, Watch Case Makers of England, NAWCC Watch & Clock Bulletin Supplement No. 20 (1994)