Jaquet-Droz, Pierre

Born at Chaux-de-Fonds, Switzerland, 28. July 1721, married in 1752 and died at Bienne on 28 November 1790. World-Famous maker of mechanical singing birds and outstanding automata. He also made complicated watches and musical clocks playing on bells, as well as organ-playing clocks. He made an unusual automaton clock fort he king of Spain. His son, Henri Louis (born in 1752) was also a maker of automata as well as watches and clocks. In 1784, he moved the head office of his business from La Chaus-de-Fonds to Geneva and from that date forward it became mainly concerned with watchmaking.
(Ord-Hume, Music Box, 1980, p. 309-310)

Jaquet-Droz, Henri Louis

Jaquet-Droz, Henri Louis, Geneva and Paris. Born in 1752, died in Naples, 15 November 1791, aged 39. Son of Pierre he was a maker of singing birds and automata of remarkable complexity. Between 1760 and 1790, father Pierre and son contrived four automata which were acclaimed throughout the world: The Musician, The Writer, The Artist and The Grotto. The first three are preserved to this day at Neuchatel, Switzerland. Henri Louis is believed to have written the music played by The Musician and was originally trained as a musician. He also built The Sheperd automaton clock, now in the Madrid National Museum. He journeyed to England, France and Spain, was condemned to death in madrid by the Inquisition as a necromancer and saved by the Bishop of Toledo.
(Ord-Hume, Music Box, 1980, p. 310)