The Clockmakers’ Company Library was founded in 1813. It consisted at first of the ancient manuscripts of the Company on which most standard reference works about British clockmakers have since been based.
It soon grew to include many printed books, often presented by their authors, or annotated by famous clock and watchmakers.
It is now celebrated for its holding of rare clockmakers’ workbooks and related documents (such as Victor Kullberg’s Records and many 18th century holograph manuscripts by John Harrison).
The Collection is shown in a single room, containing at any one time some 600 English and European watches, 30 clocks and 15 marine timekeepers, together with a number of rare horological portraits. The majority of items in the Collection range from c.1600 to c.1850.
The Clockmakers’ Collection was begun in 1814 and is therefore the oldest collection specifically of clocks and watches in the world. It has been on permanent public display since 1874.