LEWISTON – Crews have put the gears of a historic clock back in motion.

The rare Edward Howard timepiece was built for the city in 1891. On Saturday, it was moved to its new resting place – the landing between the second and third floors of City Hall. And for the first time in almost three years, the four clock faces in the tower show the correct time.

“It’s been a very long project,” said Mike Paradis, public building supervisor.

A pipe-and-gear assembly connects the clock’s mechanism to the faces in the tower, and a hole in the floor of the landing allows its 15-foot pendulum to swing freely from the ceiling above the Pine Street entrance.

Crews are building a glass case around the clock and the pendulum. That work should be finished by Friday, Paradis said, and a public unveiling is scheduled for 1 p.m. Thursday, July 15.

“We still have to put down new floor tiles once we get the case built. But it’s up and running,” Paradis said.

Workers from Balzer Family Clockworks in Freeport put the clock together on the landing Saturday while city crews drilled holes in ceilings and floors to make room. By 5 p.m., the work was finished and the clock was ticking.

Clockmaker Edward Howard was the co-founder of the first watch manufacturing company in the United States. After he built the Lewiston City Hall clock, it sat in the tower until November 2001, when the Balzer family removed it for repairs and maintenance. They returned it in June 2002.

The clock has sat in the entrance to the third-floor Community Development Department ever since.

The Lewiston Youth Advisory Council raised money last summer to build the case.

The Five County Credit Union donated a podium audio display for the project. Community relations coordinator Dot Perham-Whittier said members of the youth council expect to record a brief history of the clock, which may be played at the push of a button on the podium.


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