Kintaro Hattori Watchman's Patrol Clock

When I visited the Seiko Epson Monozukuri Museum in Japan last year there was a display case where they presented the first products of Daiwa-Kogyo. This was the company initially created in 1942 and located in the Suwa region. In 1959 the company was merged with Suwa-Seikosha and eventually this evolved into Seiko Epson.

One of the first products from the company was a Watchman's Patrol clock that was based around a general timing device with a large balance. The patrol clock is designed to be carried by a watchman during their patrols to prevent fire, theft, breakdown etc. in warehouses, factories, schools etc.The unit is housed in a leather case and can be worn over the shoulder on a strap.

As the model was not released under the by the Seiko branding it is labeled KH and this stands for Kintaro Hattori. This example is labeled with a serial or asset number 58-1190 on both the top loop and the case inside rear surface.

Inside the unit is a disc of paper that rotates in time with the clock mechanism. This is held in place with a simple central collar.

Under the large arrow shaped plate in the inside is a series of numeric stamps. The paper disc is marked with a unique numbered code when the patrolman inserts a key into the base of the unit. The key will move a series of levers that will stamp the disc at the particular time it was engaged. At the end of their shift the disc could be removed to provide an official record as to when each of the locations were visited to ensure they were making their rounds correctly.

You can see the mechanism for moving the keyed levers positioned below the timing portion of the device.

This style of patrol clock were popular and still sold all the way into the 1970's. Another example of these can be seen listed in the New Products section of the April 1971 Suwa Let's Go internal newsletter.

While I am not a clock collector it is still an interesting addition to my collection of the early Suwa produced products and it provides an insight to everyday timing devices of the time that I was not previously aware of.