Joseph Windmills of London

1640 - 1724

About the artist

Joseph Windmills was free of the Clockmakers Company in 1671 and its master in 1702. He took his son Thomas into partnership about 1700, and died in 1724.
Windmills was regarded as one of the finest clockmakers in seventeenth century London, producing a large number of lantern clocks, bracket clocks, longcase clocks and pocket watches. His earliest watch, displayed in the British Museum, was made before 1680 and did not make use of a balance spring. Thomas Tompion's sprung balance transformed the pocket watch from ornamental item into an accurate timepiece. Joseph's last recorded attendance at the Court of the Clockmakers' Company was on 24 October 1723, ending a membership of more than thirty-two years. He died in 1724, having spent fifty-two years at his trade. Thomas then ran the company until his death in 1737. Thomas died childless and thus was the last of the Windmills' male line
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