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.

 
 
Denver Colorado USA Equatorial Dial 24
Large Erickson equatorial monument dial. It consists of a disc of pink granite about 6 feet in diameter and 6 inches thick, tilted on edge to align with the earth's equator. The gnomon is an approximately 3 inches in diameter, made of a stainless steel rod piercing the disc at 90 degrees. It supports the disc from below, and protrudes about 2-3 feet above the disc; far enough that it casts a shadow on the face of the disc all summer. Winter shadows fall on the back side of the dial, also engraved with hour lines. The original sundial was erected in 1941. Dean Babcock was associated with the late Stephen A. Ionides of Erickson Monument Co. in designing and setting various sundials in Colorado, including this one. When George Cranmer undertook to place a dial of Chinese tradition in Cranmer park, Dean helped Ionides to translate the Chinese characters into Arabic. The stone cutter was probably John Earl Hershberger. The dial was replaced with the current one March 21, 1966 after the original was dynamited by vandals. The sandstone of the sundial base came from Lyons, Colorado. It is 5'5" thick and extends two feet below the pavement. In his inimitable style, Cranmer wrote in 1950 that "the sundial is only seventeen seconds of time East of the 105th Meridian on which Mountain Time is based, and since the whole setting is so accurate, one can set his watch by it." Erickson Monument, makers of the original sundial, created the award replica.
 
 
Tempe Arizona USA Horizontal Dial 23
A horizontal dial from Picture Rock Sandstone with 24k gold-plated inlaid brass fittings, 25 inches wide by 36 inches long, with gnomon 12.5 inches high. Gnomon is 1.5 inches thick. Total sundial weight 110 lbs. Time is marked in 10 minute intervals. Has Equation of Time and moonlight reading time correction table. Has the time and direction of sunrises and sunsets, the solstices, equinoxes, solar azimuth, and high noon.
 
 
Arvada Colorado USA Horizontal Dial 22
A large horizontal dial of brick and stone with a formed structural steel gnomon in the form of a modern sculpture. Roman numeral hour marks doe DST are on raised brick pillars.
 
 
Colma California USA Horizontal Dial 21
This large ground-level horizontal dial is 50 ft. diameter. Formerly a floral dial with a cypress tree as gnomon and hour lines crafted out of plants such as santilina shrubs, during the 1960's the dial was changed to concrete and aluminum.
 
 
San Francisco California USA Vertical Recliner Dial 20
Known as the "Navigators' Dial", this sundial is dedicated to three early explorers of the California coast. The dial itself is a sliced bronze globe of the earth sitting on the back of a tortoise. Overall, the globe hemisphere is about 2 1/2 feet in diameter, showing the world in relief centered on California. The flat face of the hemisphere is a beautiful vertical reclining dial. The dial sits atop a stone column. DIAL HAS BEEN REMOVED during remodeling of the De Young art museum - Apr 2002
 
 
San Diego California USA Vertical Dial 19
Above the southwest entrance of the Chemistry-Geology Building is a vertical declining dial built by Richard L. Threet in 1979. The dial uses thin aluminum tubing as a gnomon to cast shadows on a ring of hour and half hour lines approximately 9 feet in diameter. The lines were originally painted black on the white concrete wall with only the 9 am, 12 noon, 3 pm and 6 pm lines boldly numbered. Since then the dial has lost all but the 12. DIAL DESTROYED BY BUILDING REMODELING Per Richard Threet 12/2/2006
 
 
Riverside California USA Equatorial Dial 18
An equatorial dial 47 inches in diameter made of stainless steel. It sits upon four sleek pillars setting on a concrete rise. The gnomon rod has a round disk with a hole to act as a nodus. The dial equatorial band has solstice and equinox lines, as well as a line showing the declination of the sun marked with by months and zodiac signs. Hour lines are marked by raised stainless steel Roman Numerals. Dial is corrected to Pacific Standard Time.
 
 
Los Angeles California USA Vertical Dial 17
A vertical dial on a large granite cube. Similar to the one in Bloomfield CT. Both dials were made for CIGNA Insurance Co.
 
 
Berkeley California USA Horizontal Dial 16
A 16 inch diameter horizontal dial made of bronze. Gnomon is 8 in. long, 5 in. high. A classic horizontal dial on a 4 foot marble pedestal. Donated in 1915 by Class of 1877. Includes EOT table by date. The dial sits atop a marble pedestal.
 
 
Tucson Arizona USA Horizontal Dial 14
A 25 inch circular engraved horizontal dial in a large irregular stone. Surrounding the dial on the stone are zodiacal signs and a beautiful engraved drawing of the surrounding mountains. The designer, John Carmichael, calls these dials "horizontal string heliochronometers" since the gnomon is a brass cable held very straight under tension from a heavy counterweight which is suspended from a brass hinged lever.
 
 
Tucson Arizona USA Horizontal Dial 12
This concrete and adobe brick horizontal dial is approximately 8 1/2 feet in diameter with a triangular gnomon 25 x 32 inches. This is a large, but very plain sundial except for the shiny chrome plated gnomon. It lacks numerals, but has hour points and shows the cardinal points. The dial is corrected for longitude. The pedestal is missing some bricks and is adorned with graffiti.
 
 
Tucson Arizona USA Sun Circle Dial 11
A "Stonehenge" or sun circle dial designed by Chris Tanz, Susan Holman, Paul Edwards and with the help of Will Grundy and sponsored by the Pima County Flood Control and Transportation Dept. The structure uses a broken circle of walls to create designs made of light based on the movement of the sun. The circle, 50 feet in diameter with 8 foot walls is modeled loosely on the Casa Rinconada kiva ruins in Chaco Canyon, N.M. The walls are of integrally colored concrete block, concrete, and flagstone. Lines on a bronze plaque indicate north and south and the direction of sunrise and sunset on the equinoxes and solstices. Holes in the wall do the same. Solar noon is marked when sunlight comes through a slot in the South wall and passes a line on the floor.
 
 
Ottawa Ontario Canada Horizontal Dial 10
A bronze 12 inch diameter horizontal dial with hour lines from 4 AM to 8 PM and engraved Roman hour numerals and compass rose. This restoration was donated by Thomas Ritchie who remembered from his youth that the original dial was accidentally destroyed during the construction of the Parliament Library in 1872. The restored dial was unveiled May 19, 1921 by the Governor General, Sir Victor Cavendish, Duke of Devonshire.Dial sits atop light granite pillar approximately 18 inches diameter and 40 inches high.
 
 
Tempe Arizona USA Horizontal Dial 9
A 17 inch diameter bronze horizontal dial, mounted in a metal collar that slopes 5 deg S to correct for Tempe latitude of 33 N. The dial face has radiating hour, half-hour and 15-minute lines, encircled by the inscription "Grow old along with me. The best is yet to be." On the outside of the inscription are Roman numerals from VI to VI. Filling out the outer circle is inscribed "Tempe Garden Club". The dial sits on top of a square pedestal approximately 2 feet high
 
 
Sun City Arizona USA Horizontal Dial 8
A monumental horizontal dial in a gravel rock garden. Gnomon is 22 feet high, 40 feet long built from a structural steel "I" beam 64 feet long. Gnomon is supported by three concrete triangular legs and is encased in concrete with four shadow-casting style edges. A circular concrete walkway under the gnomon has painted Roman numeral hour markers. This dial had significantly deteriorated and was in danger of demolition in 2011 when rescued by the efforts of Sun City residents, numerous Sundial Mail List letters explaining its significance and, particularly, an advocacy letter by NASS member Roger Bailey. NASS member John Carmichael was instrumental in coordinating these efforts, which led to complete restoration and re-dedication in October, 2011. The dial was a center piece of the innovative Sun City planned community, built in the early 1970's by visionary developer John Meeker.
 
 
Phoenix Arizona USA Horizontal Dial 7
This large ground-level horizontal dial designed by Charles Keener. Dial is a circular concrete slab 62 in. diameter and 8 in. thick. The gnomon is 30 in. high, 41 in. substile, 55 in. stile. Dial has Roman numerals. Unfortunately, the 6AM and 8AM numerals are missing. Ground level dial composed of concrete slab 62 inch diameter and 8 inch thick.
 
 
Oracle Arizona USA Horizontal Dial 6
A brightly colored horizontal dial 4 feet in diameter. Dial is white ceramic with tile edging. Hour lines are bright arrows, adjusted for local longitude. At the north point is a graph of the Equation of Time and at the south point is the bright face of a sun. Ringing the dial is an inscription. Base is a concrete "flower" approximately 2 feet high. Near by is an approximately 15 foot long Noon Mark or Meridian Line with the months of the year marked on it. The shadow is cast by a small electric power pole.
 
 
Westbury New York USA Polyhedral Dial 5
An old polyhedral dial set atop a tall stone column on the grounds of Old Westbury Gardens. Old Westbury Gardens is the former estate of John Shaffer Phipps, heir to a U.S. Steel fortune. Built in 1906, this garden is an example of period landscape design, with formal gardens and landscaped grounds on a 200 acre site. The gardens and mansion are open to the public but there is an admission fee. It is reported there are other sundials within the grounds.
 
 
Tucson Arizona USA Equatorial Dial 4
A bronze equatorial dial approximately 2 ft. in diameter designed by R. Newton Mayall. Mayall stated, "When I was asked to design the sundial in front of the Museum at Kitt Peak I was more than pleased, for it gave me a chance to work a semblance of astronomy into it. The design reflects the great telescope nearby, with its base and fork type mounting, the dial itself being the "telescope"." The dial surface is a half-cylinder whose inner surface has seven date lines and 15 minute apparent solar timelines. A thin rod supports a 1/4 inch spherical nodus in the middle of the sundial directly above the point where the 12 noon line crosses the equinox line. The shadow of the nodus tells both the apparent solar time and the date. The dial is in fair condition, with the brass gnomon rod and nodus sagging, giving rise to a noticeable error in time and date readings. There is a separate plaque in front of the dial that gives instructions for obtaining standard time using a table of the Equation of Time corrected for the dial longitude.
 
 
Flagstaff Arizona USA Horizontal Dial 3
Built by Dr. Art Adel (now deceased). Contact Mrs. Adel to arrange viewing.