Sundials - World's Oldest Clocks

North American Sundial Society

Sundials of North America

This is a complete listing of sundials in the North American Sundial Society Registry. Click on any dial thumbnail picture or city name to display our complete listing and images. To see sundials in a particular state or province, you may click on the list at left to see all registered sundials in that state, province or country (at bottom) displayed in city order.

 
 
Vancouver British Columbia USA Horizontal Dial 932
This was once a very beautiful sundial sitting on a short concrete pedestal. Now it has a missing gnomon and the dial color is uniformly aquamarine except where the coating has been rubbed away to reveal a white substrate. Tapping the dial face makes a dull sound suggesting the dial is not metal and may be hollow. A possible explanation is that the dial could be made of some kind of cast resin or fiberglass and was then spray-painted. The dial face itself is elegantly sculpted into five sectors, showing clusters of flowers, berries and fruits, creating a pronounced 3D effect. Because of this, the hour lines are reduced to short ticks at the edge of the dial face. The dial shows solar hours, marked off using Roman numerals.
 
 
Vancouver British Columbia Canada Equatorial Dial 931
A simple but elegant and well-executed bronze equatorial dial by renowned local sculptor Gerhard Class. It is about 24-inches in diameter and is mounted on a 16 x 16 x 36-inch plinth of nephrite jade, damaged at one corner. The gnomon has a central slit and can be rotated about the polar axis to create a narrow beam of light for precise reading of the sun's position. The dial shows local solar time plus one hour, corresponding to Daylight Saving Time. The dial's construction is technically perfect but, sadly, the dial appears to be misaligned with the gnomon axis pointing 7 deg west of north.
 
 
Burnaby British Columbia Canada Equatorial Dial 930
This substantial and durable 30 inch anodized aluminium equatorial dial is mounted on a concrete plinth with a brass plaque showing the Equation of Time and usage instructions. The gnomon consists of two parallel plates each with a figure-8 analemma cut out. When the figure-8 apertures are rotated toward the sun, the dial illumination is corrected for the equation of time by reading the correct edge of the analemma for the date. If it the gnomon is turned sideways to the sun, the gap between the plates form a slit that produces a narrow beam for reading solar time adjusted to the longitude of the Pacific time zone. The hour scale is marked out at 5 minute intervals. Hours are labeled for Standard Time and for Daylight Saving Time.
 
 
Dawson Creek British Columbia Canada Analemmatic Dial 929
An analemmatic dial 23 feet 7 inches wide consisting of a simple concrete slab with black painted marking. Shows solar time plus one hour (akin to Daylight Saving Time). Dial is in memory of a local artist and community activist Edna McPhail (1923 - 2008) who championed the development of the Peace Park in which the dial is located.
 
 
Brentwood Bay British Columbia Canada Horizontal Dial 928
This is simple horizontal sundial with the standard cast bronze dial plate, 12 inches in diameter. The sundial shows local solar time with Roman numerals from V to VII with noon marked as XII. The dial is delineated with marks for the half and quarter hours. The hour lines and gnomon angle are correct for the latitude. The gnomon root is in the center of the circular casting. Radiating out from the center is a compass rose showing the cardinal directions.
 
 
Vancouver British Columbia Canada Analemmatic Dial 927
The analemmatic sundial is laid within a 15-foot circle of light red concrete, set in the middle of a large grey concrete concourse on the south side of the school. Hour points are marked by 4-inch bronze disks embedded in the concrete; the declination scale is made of embedded tiles. The scale is red in part and blue in part, denoting the summer and winter periods. Correspondingly, each hour point hour is labeled twice; red for Daylight Saving Time and in blue for Standard Time. The dial incorporates a longitude correction for the time zone, and features Sunrise & Sunset Markers ("Bailey Points"). All labels were hand-painted by students - a deliberate measure intended to require occasional repainting and hence continued student engagement and involvement with the dial over the years.
 
 
District of North Vancouver British Columbia Canad Analemmatic Dial 926
This rather strange split analemmatic dial shows civil time. It has separate morning and afternoon dials with time marks for standard (blue) and daylight saving (red)time. Instead of the usual linear declination of dates made into a walkway on the meridian line, the split analemmatic dial has two analemmas, one for morning and one for afternoon with the yearly dates for standing on the analemma to correct solar time to civil time. As it turns out, the analemmas that are drawn are not "classic" analemmas but special curves where the position on each date is estimated as an average position to correct for all morning or afternoon hours. The only other such dial is at Longwood Gardens in PA. (NASS #328)
 
 
Vancouver British Columbia Canada Horizontal Dial 925
A delightful dial in a delightful setting, well worth the modest admission fee. It is an 18 inch patinated bronze disk mounted on an elegant white granite pedestal, with the hours adjusted to the time zone. The face is a finely crafted bas relief delineated in quarter hours, with the hours labeled using Roman numerals. The lower part of the dial shows the Arms of UBC, along with the leaves and flower spikes of a plant. In keeping with the medicinal purpose of a Physic Garden, the sculpted gnomon features a snake (a traditional symbol for a physician) entwined around a poison chalice (a traditional symbol for a pharmacist). A plaque on the pedestal dedicates the dial to Frank Ebenezer Buck, 1876 - 1970, UBC’s first Landscape Architect. The pedestal is from the 1920s, predating the dial, and was used elsewhere in the Botanical Gardens for their now-lost original sundial.
 
 
Victoria British Columbia Canada Horizontal Dial 924
A standard cast bronze sundial, 12 inches in diameter. It shows solar time with Roman numerals from V to VII with noon as XII. Also marked are the half and quarter hours. The hour lines and gnomon angle are correct for the latitude. The gnomon root is in the center of the circular casting in the center of the wind rose showing the cardinal directions.
 
 
Lansing Michigan USA Vertical Dial 923
This is a vertical, east-declining sundial, 22 ft 6 in by 15 ft 10 in. The dial is constructed of 6061 aluminum alloy pieces electrostatically painted and bolted together,then mounted on a concrete block wall. The position of the gnomon, hour, solstice, and equinoctial lines are corrected for longitude to show time zone solar time. Stenciled hour line numbers are changed to display DST or EST at appropriate times of the year. Visitors can determine the correct time by referring to an Equation of Time display. During the year, the triangular gnomon tip casts its shadow on the declination lines of summer and winter solstices and equinoxes. This is the largest known vertical sundial in Michigan, and one of the largest in the United States.
 
 
Middletown Connecticut USA Vertical Dial 922
This 6 x 6 ft. bronze, vertical sundial faces directly south on the curved sandstone wall of the Observatory. This dial was fabricated of Muntz metal bronze that received a hot applied green patina to compliment the brown sandstone color of this 1916 university observatory. Because of its large size, the metal dial weighs 650 lb. The hour numbers and lines are raised and applied to the surface of the dial. The Roman hour numbers that surround the dial plate in a frame take their shape according to the hour angle. Declination lines of the solstices and equinox are marked by the triangular gnomon shadow tip. The dial includes a built in longitude correction to show solar time for the time zone meridian. On a nearby wall below the dial, a plaque features an analemmatic graph for the equation of time correction to get clock civil time.
 
 
Albuquerque New Mexico USA Vertical Dial 921
This painted vertical dial is 10 x 11 feet, covering a vast expanse of south facing wall. The dial has a strong New Mexico theme using bright colors, and many personal elements. There is a road runner, hot air balloon, a lunar footprint (centered at 2:18 (clock time) on July 20th 1969, the minute they landed). There is a red, white & blue star at the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month for Veterans Day. In the night exposure of the sundial the star Polaris is just above the gnomon, as it should always be. All the little embedded details in the sundial are explained on the ‘Details’ tab of the website link below.
 
 
Vancouver British Columbia Canada Horizontal Dial 920
This is a 25 cm horizontal dial engraved on a 1/4 inch yellow metal plate (probably bronze). It shows local solar time. The hour marks look precise and consistent, but upon closer look are oddly arranged. The dialist attempted to shift the dial hour lines to correct for longitude (3.17 deg west). The AM hour lines are fairly accurate except the earliest hour lines (IV, V) which inconsistently meet the gnomon foot on the wrong side. The PM hour lines seem to mirror the AM lines except that 3 degrees had been added to each, rendering inaccurate time throughout the afternoon. The gnomon is slightly bent, and nearby buildings and trees block the dial at some times of day. The dial is decorated using simple geometric and visually pleasing patterns. Shallow engraving is used for the hour lines (making them a bit difficult to read), labels, and decoration. The gnomon has a bird engraved on each side and sits on a wedge base. The dial sits on a short granite pedestal with a polished top surface, and was commissioned by his parents in memory of Robert Carlyle Howard (born 1953, died 1970).
 
 
Vancouver British Columbia Canada Vertical Dial 919
This bright and colorful vertical dial declines west, showing "Hours to Sunset" (Italian hours). The dial is held up by two posts on a board 60 x 90 cm (24 x 36 inches). The dial face is decorated in the colours of the rainbow, with a band of color for each hour left to sunset. Quarter hours are marked using thin white lines. The dial was commercially printed on aluminum-plastic laminated material, with a UV protective coating. The gnomon is a repurposed decorative gate hinge. The supporting structure is made from red cedar.
 
 
St. Louis Missouri USA Horizontal Dial 918
The dial plate is a 16 x 16 inch square piece of milk glass, with the hour lines and Arabic numerals made by sandblasting through a photo-etched stencil and then spraying black with lithichrome paint into the etchings. The triangular gnomon is made of 3/8 inch thick stainless steel. Saint Louis sculptor Abraham Mohler made the pedestal from EW Gold limestone quarried near Ste. Genevieve, MO. It is 18 x 18 inches square and 40 inches tall.
 
 
Attleboro Massachusetts USA Vertical Dial 917
A 45 x 45 inch slate sundial hangs over the bay window. The dial is a vertical decliner with hour lines from 4am to 1pm. The gnomon has been damaged, but if you look carefully, there is a nodus and on the dial face are faint declination lines showing summer & winter solstices and the equinox. The hours are delineated on the hour and marked in Arabic numbers.
 
 
Perryville Missouri USA Vertical Dial 916
The sundial is attributed to Vincentian Brother Angelo Oliva, being painted sometime in the 14 year period between 1823, when he arrived in Perryville to lead the reconstruction of the original, wooden church into the present one made of stone, and 1837 when he died. The dial has been recently repainted.
 
 
Bellingham Washington USA Vertical Dial 915
The vertical dial is incorporated into a bright, flowing mural 29 x 54 feet covering nearly all of the south wall of a brick building. The mural was several years in the making. It began with an international competition sponsored by Allied Arts of Bellingham and sundial enthusiast Sasch Stephens. Ultimately the mural with embedded vertical dial was dedicated on the fall equinox. Called the "First Shadow Celebration" many local celebrities recognized the new mural artwork and old art of sun dialing.
 
 
Wildwood New Jersey USA Analemmatic Dial 914
On the boardwalk, inset into the wood planks is a smooth concrete walkway about 12 inches wide. Months and instructions are given in neat lettering made in the concrete. The hours are done on a half-ellipse using the same smooth concrete, Arabic numbers, and 15-minute time marks (far narrower than a person's shadow). The dial is set for daylight saving time (with no longitude correction).
 
 
State College Pennsylvania USA Horizontal Dial 913
The John Myers monumental sundial is truly a masterpiece in time. The 11 foot tall black granite gnomon seems to grow out of a larger granite block. Time is marked by the several rows of low, large flat stones, 25 in all. They are set for summer solstice (first row), equinox (second row that has the stones all in a liner), and winter solstice (only for 10am-2pm. The stones themselves are too large for precise time telling, but the use of colored dots painted on the stones allows you to tell exact civil time using the tip of the sundial's shadow on the solstices and equinox.