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Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Minicube alarm clock, model E043-000 | Seth Thomas, General Time, Talley industries | ca. 1970

Finding the Minicube alarm clock by Seth Thomas in yellow prompted me to find out what other colors this little gem was released in, and to seek out retro cube clocks in general.  A great variety were made.

The Minicube cube alarm clock is given the model designation E043-000.  Seth Thomas is a division of General Time, a Talley Industries Company.  Click for a brief history of Seth Thomas.  The clock is approximately 3-3/4” on a side. It operates on AC and must be plugged in, it is not battery operated.  These clocks are relatively common and can be purchased for under $30.

Back of Minicube alarm clock

On the back of the clock there is a metal pull that engages the alarm. A wheel is pushed and turned to set the alarm and pulled and turned to set the time.

Seth Thomas logo

From a Howland advertisement on p. 7 of the December 13, 1971 issue of The Hour, Norwalk, CT.

Howland advertisement for Seth Thomas Minicube alarm clock

here’s Howland with your gift list for Christmas ‘71

For grandfolks, a milk maid clock, gold colored numerals, hand, 17.50.  For teenagers, a blue, green, or white mini-cube alarm, 9.95.  For dads, brothers and uncles, a speed-read, wood grain digital clock, 22.00.  By Seth Thomas.

Seth Thomas Minicube alarm clock with box

Seth Thomas Minicube alarm clock with box.  Image source:  funkandjunk.com

The following table lists the case and face color combinations of the Seth Thomas Minicube alarm clocks I have found.  It does not include any of the special variants.

Case color Face color Catalog number
blue white 547
orange white 548
white orange 549
black white 553
green green 555
orange orange 556
yellow yellow 557

One of the interesting aspects of the Minicube clock is its marketing by different companies in different countries.  The Seth Thomas version is identical structurally to the Westclox version.  The Seth Thomas Minicube on the left is marked “MADE IN U.S.A.” on the bottom of the face.  The Westclox Minicube on the right is marked “MADE IN CANADA”

Seth Thomas Minicube alarm clock "MADE IN U.S.A."

Westclox Minicube alarm clock "MADE IN CANADA"

How could this be?  Well, Westclox and Seth Thomas were both under the same corporate umbrella.  The first Westclox factory outside the United States opened in Peterborough, Ontario, Canada in 1920 and by 1923 a new factory opened.  In 1930, Western Clock Company was merged with Seth Thomas Clock Company as “General Time Corporation,” and in 1936 it was renamed the Westclox Division of General Time Corp. Expansions to the Peterborough facility were made through the 1950s as business grew.  In 1968, General Time was acquired by Talley Industries.

Westclox Minicube.  From etsy.com.

Westclox Minicube alarm clock, yellowWestclox Minicube alarm clock, yellowWestclox Minicube alarm clock, yellow

Orange case, white face, catalog number 548. From eBay.

Seth Thomas Minicube alarm clockSeth Thomas Minicube alarm clockSeth Thomas Minicube alarm clock

White case, orange face, catalog number 549.  From eBay.

Seth Thomas Minicube alarm clockSeth Thomas Minicube alarm clock

Black case, white face, catalog number 553.  From etsy.com.

Seth Thomas Minicube alarm clockSeth Thomas Minicube alarm clockSeth Thomas Minicube alarm clock

Blue case, white face, catalog number 547.  From etsy.com.

Seth Thomas Minicube alarm clockSeth Thomas Minicube alarm clockSeth Thomas Minicube alarm clock

Orange case, orange face, catalog number 556.  From etsy.com.

Seth Thomas Minicube alarm clockSeth Thomas Minicube alarm clock, with boxSeth Thomas Minicube alarm clock

Yellow case, yellow face, catalog number 557.  Click to see the original post about this Seth Thomas Minicube alarm clock.

Seth Thomas Minicube alarm clockSeth Thomas Minicube alarm clock

Green case, green face, catalog number 555.  From eBay.

Seth Thomas Minicube alarm clockSeth Thomas Minicube alarm clockSeth Thomas Minicube alarm clock

Below are some additional, specialized models from the Minicube line.

Yosemite Sam, catalog number 6902.  From eBay.

Seth Thomas Minicube alarm clockSeth Thomas Minicube alarm clockSeth Thomas Minicube alarm clock

Bugs Bunny, catalog number 6903. From eBay.

Seth Thomas Minicube alarm clockSeth Thomas Minicube alarm clock

Some of the clocks in the Minicube line were made exclusively for American Greetings.  Clock number 995-STC-2.  From eBay.

Seth Thomas Minicube alarm clockSeth Thomas Minicube alarm clockSeth Thomas Minicube alarm clock

Minicube – Currier & Ives.  Catalog number 480.  Model 0480-000 but identified as Minicube on the label.  From eBay.

Seth Thomas Minicube alarm clockSeth Thomas Minicube alarm clockSeth Thomas Minicube alarm clock

More information about these clocks would be appreciated.  If you know of different designs or color combinations, please comment below!

References

Howland advertisement. (1971, December 13). The Hour, p. 7.

Westclox Canada.  Retrieved January 21, 2013 from http://www.canclockmuseum.ca/gallery/WESTCLOX_CANADA/2202.html.

Westclox corporate history.  Retrieved January 21, 2013 from http://clockhistory.com/westclox/company/index.html.


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5 comments:

Anonymous said...

Found one at the local Goodwill. Was here trying to find out what year it might be. I'm guessing 1976 because it is painted like the Bicentennial flag.

kevin404 said...

Is it the Mini-Light? (American flag design clock is at the bottom of the post).

Anonymous said...

Yes, that is it. The clock works good, though it appears the light must have burned out as it is not backlit.

Anonymous said...

I found a mini cube with the Beatles 'Rubber Soul' album cover on the face of the clock. Nice shape but the front plastic has a few scratches. Have you heard of this one in the American greetings line? Any info is appreciated. ~ T.P.

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