Sundials - World's Oldest Clocks

North American Sundial Society

St. Louis  

Sundial 883
State/Province:  Missouri Country:  USA
Dial Type:  Horizontal Condition:  Good
Latitude:   36° 37.5276' N Longitude:   90° 11.33754' W
Location:
  • The Old Courthouse is a block west of the Gateway Arch and is now its visitor center. The dial is south of the east entrance to the courthouse, enclosed by a rod iron fence.
 
Description:
  • The circular bronze dial sits on an iron pipe, surrounded by a picket fence and protected from the elements by a brass hood. It is a nearly identical dial to the one at the St. Louis Arsenal (NASS dial #847). In R. McGuire's book, "St. Louis Arsenal - Armory Of The West" is a picture of the sundial for which the caption reads "On December 12, 1859, master armorer N. Engels, machinist A. Schaedel, and engraver W. Hawksley dedicated a sundial, which they had created entirely from spare ordnance materials."

    The Old Courthouse Dial measures 17 inches in diameter, has a large unadorned triangular gnomon, and on the plate has hour lines from 6am to 6pm delineated every 15 minutes. There is a curious second set of hour lines at the top of the dial plate from 10am to 2pm. Hour numbers are in Roman numerals. There are no other engravings on the dial.
 
General Information:Inscription:
  • Owner: US National Park Service
  • None
  • Designer: Major W H Bell, U.S. Army
  • Builder: St. Louis Arsenal - N Engels, W. Hawsley
  • Construction Date: 1859, refurbished 1958 and 2017
 
 
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Last Revised: 2017-09-03 21:30