Chicago-area real estate investor Cameel Halim supports the movement to preserve historically significant properties designed by such important architects as Frank Lloyd Wright, Daniel Burnham, and George Maher in Chicago’s North Shore area. In 2005, Cameel Halim stepped in at the last minute to save a historic home from being razed by purchasing it himself.
Cameel Halim’s respect for historic things is not limited to architecture. He owns one of the most significant collections of clocks and watches in North America, consisting of more than 600 clocks and pocket watches, most dating to between 1500 and 1800, as well as a library of more than 2,700 works on horology, the science of keeping time.
An engineer by training, Cameel Halim prospered in the Chicago-area real estate market after coming to the U.S. in 1968. Although he did not begin collecting clocks until 1997, he has been fascinated by them since he was a boy growing up in Egypt. Halim acquired about two-thirds of his collection by attending auctions and other sales, and the rest from an auction of pieces once on display at Seth Atwood’s Time Museum in Rockford, Illinois, which closed in 1999.