In 1884 the Seth Thomas Clock Co., Thomaston, CT, built an addition to its existing factory on the corner of Marine and Bridge streets within which to manufacture pocket watches. The first watches were available for sale in 1885. For the next thirty years, a full line of Seth Thomas watches were available in 0, 4, 6, 12, 16 and 18 size. By 1914, the company had decided to concentrate on the clock business and the last watches ceased appearing in the company's catalogs in the Fall of 1915.
This Seth Thomas pocket watch was made in 1907. The case is yellow gold filled and the engraving is still pretty crisp! The porcelain dial has Roman Numerals and is in perfect condition, displaying a second bit at the six o'clock position. It also has the additional feature of being lever set. The seven jewel movement has two-tone plates with a gold starburst pattern centering on some interesting concentric damaskeening. Since Seth Thomas only made pocket watches for about 30 years there are not a great deal of them extant..and this is a particularly nice six size that was lovingly cared for over its 106 year lifetime. This is what we call a crossover size that can be carried by either a man or a woman. Our master watchmakers have the seven jewel, two tone movement, ticking just like it did back in 1907 so that it can spend another lifetime in your pocket. Remember all of our timepieces come with our famous one year warranty for parts and labor. It could be yours...don't miss it!
"Look into my eyes. You want this watch....you really want it!" This one is really BIG! It is 51mm in diameter - not including the crown, by 61mm lug to lug. This is an early Omega pocket watch that has been converted for use on the wrist, executed in today's style of larger watches, it fits right in. If you are one of those gentlemen who need, or desire, a really big watch then this may be the one for you. It is a seven jewel, military style that our master watchmakers have running, winding and keeping time like the day it came from Switzerland circa 1912, just in time for WWI. Not only is it a good timekeeper, and as clean as a whistle, but the dial is one of the most attractive styles we have seen on one of these conversions. The seconds bit revolves once a minute in the 9 o'clock position and provides some interesting eye appeal. The stark contrast between the matte black dial background, the luminous numerals, and hands is dramatic. This is also aided by the red 25 to 300, 1/5 of a second markings, just outside of the chapter ring. This look is capped off perfectly by the skeletonized hands. The large rilled winding crown makes it easy to set and wind and the nickle silver case proudly displays the Omega logo on the inner back lid. All-in-all this is a very handsome watch that can grace your wrist if you are the lucky customer who goes home with this beautiful Omega on his wrist. We have only one, so don't hesitate! As always, we here at Father Time Antiques will warranty this watch for a full year for parts and labor so that you may buy with confidence.
This is a lovely little ladies Elgin Pocket Watch, that would have been a real prize for any lady in 1914 when it was made. These watches were almost always worn on a slide chain around the neck or on a watch pin. The chain was long enough that it doubled over you head and formed a "V" shape holding the watch securely at your breast bone. Residing on the chain was a slide that you could position at whatever your collar configuration was for your outfit. The slide moved easily along the chain but stayed in place once it was positioned due to bits of cork that were inside of the slide for this purpose. It made for a very elegant look. Most women had gold filled watches but a few were lucky enough to have a solid gold one like this one. Not only is it solid 14k gold, but it is one of the most beautifully engraved watches we have had in over 33 years. The hand engraving is so spectacular, not only in execution but condition that it takes you eye whenever you are near it. Make sure that you take a look at the "Zoom-In" photos to see it in detail. There are two cartouches on the lids that are a very unusual ovoid shape...one is plain polish and awaiting your family initial, ...while the other has an intricate idyllic scene engraved to amuse your eye. Once you have drooled over the engraving take a look a the fancy bow at the top. In a world of plain circular bows this one is king. As you might imagine with a case this wonderful the seven jewel movement is in pristine condition and the the superior of the two grades that Elgin offered at the time. Our watchmakers had only to clean, oil, and regulate the watch to get it winding, running, and keeping time just like it did back in 1914. Many women had watches of the era but only the lucky few had solid gold watches like this beauty and it can be yours. Remember all of our timepieces come with our famous one year warranty for parts and labor so that you may buy with confidence. Don't miss this one...as we have only one!
This is one you have to see in person because the photos just can't capture the real Art Deco essence of this timepiece! I think that it is the light coming off of the stones that gives it a special appearance that the camera just can't see. Talk about a definitive Art Deco watch....this is it! The watch is a very nice Swiss Orator that our watchmakers have winding, setting, and keeping time like the day it arrived here in America in the 1930's. The metal is all sterling silver and the black enamel work just sets it off perfectly. The bar pin is hand engraved and catches the light quite nicely. The stones are all costume but the quality of the movement is an excellent 17 jewel Swiss beauty. There are 34 marcasites bordering the watch and 18 baguette rhinestones that compliment the black half-round and black pyramidal stones. No doubt some well-to-do lady wore this piece to a fare-thee-well. Now you can have an authentic piece of the era that has a great deal of style for a reasonable price,in fully restored condition, and warrantied for one year for parts and labor. Not only is it a nice watch but it is also a piece of Art Deco jewelry. Don't miss it since we have only had one of these after being in the business for over 33 years!
No need to take a bath! Just belly up to this really nice gentleman's Zodiac, and rest assured that if you have a slightly smaller wrist this wristwatch will fill the bill. This is just a great everyday watch that is in near perfect condition. The stainless steel case is very clean and the dial has been professionally refinished. The movement is a very reliable 17 jewel. manual wind, model that is spotless and running like the proverbial top. The case measures 31mm in diameter by 38mm long and is a screw-back to resist moisture and dust. If you just want a real nice stainless steel timepiece that will perform like-new but give you that vintage panache (circa 1958) then this may be the watch for you. With a Zodiac on your wrist you can go wrong! Remember all of our timepieces come with our famous one year warranty for parts and labor so that you may buy with confidence.
This Elgin is in near mint condition! Look at the 8 size (43mm in diameter by 63mm, top of bow to bottom of case)"Box Hinge" (Swiss Montilier) case. The engraving shows no signs of wear and these cases were among the most desirable made at the time. Take a look at the "Zoom-In" photos to see how this watch is constructed.The extra beefy case shoulders at the top and bottom of the watch are what make it a "Box Hinge" and these improvements assured the owner that the case was very strongly made for a lifetime of use. The 11 jewel, 3/4 plate gilded movement, circa 1887, winds, sets, and runs great. This is a scarce size and in great condition...don't miss it!
If you visit us here at Father Time you know that we think highly of Elgin, not only because of our proximity to Elgin, (the town) or because we have known many of the factory workers, but because they made a fine product at a reasonable price with great looks. This gentleman's Elgin wristwatch has a yellow gold filled top and a stainless back (for longevity and hypo-allergenic properties). The case is 40mm lug-to-lug by 25mm in diameter (not including the crown). The 17 jewel movement looks and runs like new. The dial and hands have been expertly refinished and look perfect. The watch, made in 1952, shows virtually no signs of wear. Even the crown is original!
This watch has an unbreakable mainspring that Elgin developed for watches that needed to be used on a daily basis with virtually trouble-free power delivery. They called it "Durapower" and used a logo for it that you can see just under the Elgin name. The "Shockmaster" appellation, that you can see just above the seconds bit, refers to special "kif" springs that were used to lessen any blows that occurred under daily operation. If you want a nice looking Elgin that will give you service for years to come then this may be the watch for you.
Elgin was the largest watch manufacturer in the World and when this Elgin Hunter was made, circa 1909 in Elgin, Illinois they were at their peak. Their popularity was due to the fact that they made a very reliable and accurate timepiece for a reasonable amount of money. This one is a 6 size that was carried by both men and women. It was a slightly larger watch for a lady and/or a slightly smaller watch for a gentleman. The case is a yellow gold filled beauty that was warrantied to wear, under constant use, for 25 years (the thickest gold-filled case in standard production). The engraving is still very crisp and clean as evidence of it being well-cared for. The movement is a 3/4 plate, gilded, 7 jewels workhorse and is running perfectly. The porcelain dial is perfect and is a great contrast for the blued steel, Breguet style "lunette" hands. If you want a pocket watch that is of a size that is easy to carry then this may be the one for you. Remember all of our timepieces come with our one year warranty for parts and labor so that you may buy with confidence.
This one of the most elegant gentleman's watches Hamilton made! The case is definitive Art Deco design and the inside is perhaps more attractive than the outside! Nobody made a better looking movement than Hamilton at that time. In 1938 you would have been hard put to find a more elegant watch than this! The "Linwood" was a watch that set Hamilton apart from all other American watch manufacturers at that time! The trend in the late 1930's was towards long, elegantly curved watches and the "Linwood" was one of the most desirable models of it's day. I think what makes it look so good is the rills on the subtly curved, tonneau-shaped, case sides. The yellow gold filled case measures 43MM lug to lug, by 22MM in width. Take a look at the close-up photos and you will see what great condition the case is in. The entire curvilinear sweep of the watch is very cutting edge for the era. Streamlining was the order of the day and Hamilton's designers hit a home run with the "Linwood". Not only is it a designer's dream but it's a wonderful watch as well. The seventeen jewel movement is a mechanical engineering marvel that is running and keeping accurate time like the day it was made. Add to all of it's attributes the fact that it has a beautiful satin silver dial accented by applied solid gold numerals and the result is a winning combination that can't be beat. On the back is a very cool dedication, it reads: "Merry Xmas from The Gang 1938". Whose gang? What gang? A gaggle of friends, the guys on the corner, or the mob? No one knows for sure but just think of the stories this watch could tell. You can make up your own story....we won't tell! This is truly one of the nicest "Linwoods" that we have ever had in our 33 years in the business. It could be yours...don't miss it! Remember all of our timepieces come with our famous one year warranty for parts and labor.
Once in a great while a watch comes along that makes the heart of an afficianado sing. The Gubelin company made a wonderful watch and this one is stellar among their production. It is a complicated triple date with moon-phase in an 18K solid gold case that was made for their best customers, circa 1954. The dial of the watch shows the date by means of a red tipped hand that points at the date indices just inside of the chapters. The day of the week is shown in a window just below the twelve o'clock position and, in a window next to it, is the month. The phases of the moon appear in a crescent just above the six o'clock position. There is additionally a central red sweep second hand. All of the complications can be advanced manually by means of buttons on the case sides. The case itself is a classic square with quite a bit of heft and stylized teardrop lugs. This complicated movement is running and keeping time like the day it was made. The movement is a 25 jewel automatic mechanical work of art. The automatic feature is great for wearing everyday and it ensures that this accurate time keeper is constantly wound and right on the money. The 18K solid gold case measures 45MM lug to lug, by 32MM wide, by 15MM thick. This is a real man's timepiece that was made for the guy that wants something special. Don't forget all of our timepieces come with our famous one year parts and labor warranty!
The Hamilton watch company was founded in 1892 but they didn't produce their first watch until 1893. The first watch was designed by one of the companies founding members - H.J. Cain. Their pocket watches commanded immediate respect and became prominent timepieces for railroad engineers as well as the general public. The "Broadway Limited" was introduced in their first year of business! These watches were so respected that they became the official watch of the American Expeditionary Forces world-wide! A special wristwatch version was made and supplied General Pershing and his men in WWI . Admiral Byrd relied on the same watch on both his Arctic and Antarctic expeditions. Auguste Piccard used a Hamilton timepiece on his balloon ascent into the stratosphere in the early 1930's. The first American to summit Mount Everest - Jim Whittaker -was wearing a Hamilton in 1963!
This Hamilton is a sixteen size, open face pocket watch that is indicative of Hamilton's quality and their commitment to timekeeping at a world class level. This beautiful pocket watch has a plain polish bezel, a beautifully engraved case back (with a small personalization in the shield), a 21 jewel, "940", railroad grade, lever-set movement, and an excellent porcelain double sunk dial with red five minute outer track. What's not to like about this one! You can't go wrong with the Hamilton name and a great looking 25 year gold-filled case (the thickest standard production g.f. case). The watch is railroad grade, adjusted to 5 position, with a motor barrel and safety pinion, that winds, sets, and runs with exact railroad timekeeping standards! Make sure you look at the "Zoom-In" photos of the movement plates to see how wonderful the damaskeeing patterns are on the back plate and balance cock. Yes, it a beauty and it could be yours. Remember all of out timepieces come with our famous one year warranty for parts and labor so that you may buy with confidence.
These large, rectangular, oversize watches were seen more often in the European market, but occasionally they found their way to our shores. The large case and dramatic dial make this Optima a real winner for stylish looks. Optima was a Swiss firm that held forth in the 1920's by making luxe gold and enamel watches for those with means. This particular Optima was made in the late teens or early 1920's and it has, as a testament to its age, a fabulous "Art Deco" highly stylized dial as its crowning glory. The 12, 3, 6, and 9 are all luminous as are the indicies at the 1,2,4,5,7,8,10, and 11. The blued steel skeletonized hands also contain this luminous material that allow the wearer to see the time in the dark. While the lume has mellowed in color it still glows. The rectangular stainless steel, rhodium plated case, which measures 26mm side-to-side by 42mm lug-to-lug, is large for the age and, even by today's standards, it is a sizable rectangular watch. These very early watches, like this Optima, were solid lug beauties that take either an open-ended band, bracelet, or a feed-thru band. We have matched-up a nice tu-tone feed-thru that compliments the watch with a central band stripe that echos the lume color. The 15 jewel, lever escapement, is winding. setting, and keeping time just like it was intended to do. if you would like to wear a great "Art Deco" watch around town then this may be the watch for you. Remember all of out timepieces come with our famous one year warranty for parts and labor so that you may buy with confidence.
This Westfield Driver's watch was designed to wear on the edge of your wrist so that could see the time easily with your hands on the wheel of your car. That way you don't have to remove your hands from the wheel when you are steering the car! The watch has a gold filled case with a stainless steel back that measures 27mm wide and 31mm from lug to lug. The Swiss movement has 7 jewels, and our watchmakers have it winding, setting, and keeping time like the day it arrived here from Switzerland, circa 1939. If you want an unusual watch for your wrist or collection this may be it. Remember all of our timepieces come with a one year warranty so that you may buy with confidence.
This is an American Hampden, circa 1904, Series 4, in a 16 size gold filled case. The engraving is in great condition and the cartouche (where you normally see the family initials) is open and waiting for your initials so that it can be an instant heirloom! The case measures 50mm in diameter by 70mm from the case bottom to the top of the crown. The movement is a 17 jewel "Gen. Stark." which is one of Hampden's best. Make sure you take a look at the "Zoom-In" photos of the case...it is just spectacular. You can even see the tiny lines of what is called "Engine Turning" in the background of the raised and engraved foliate design. Normally, by this time, those lines have worn off, but not so here. The case is a handsome thing to behold. While you are looking also take note of the "Stirrup" bow (a feature that was a definite up-grade). Now take a look at the dial. Notice the red Hampden name and 5 minute markers...very unusual! This is all good, but the crowning glory is the movement which is simply breathtaking. It is a seventeen jewel, nickle plate, with inlaid gold markings, and is a two finger bridge model, series 4. This watch was someone's prize possession and it was so well-cared for over the years its darn near perfect. This could be the one for you. Remember all of our timepieces come with our famous warranty for parts and labor so that you may buy with confidence.
This is a large 18 size Hampden, fifteen jewel, in a 4 oz. coin silver hunting case! The case is in great shape and the engraving is still pretty crisp while the cartouche is unengraved! We love to find them when they have not been personalized! That means that the cartouche can be engraved with your initials and become your family heirloom!
Hampden was an American watch company that held forth in Springfield, Massachusetts starting in 1877 and later in Canton, Ohio by 1889. This watch, a Series I, 15 jewel, was key wind and key set. It was made circa 1879....a very early piece. Additionally it bears the name H. Weidemann of Chicago which makes it a "Jewelers Contract" watch. If you were a jeweler in Victorian times and you wanted to market your own brand of watch you could "contract" with Hampden and many other watch manufacturers to have your name put on the movement (and sometimes the dial), provided that you met the minimum purchase requirement. That way you could be assured that your customers were getting a quality watch for which there was good engineering and an ample supply of parts.
This particular watch is in great shape and is a strong runner. It winds, sets, and runs, with great accuracy. Remember all of our timepieces come with our famous one year warranty for parts and labor so that you may buy with confidence.
We, here at Father Time, like these big, silver hunting case, beauties and if you do too, you will not be disappointed! This one is in a heavy 18 size 3 oz. coin silver case (900 parts out of a 1000 pure silver). The Elgin 15 jewel "G.M. Wheeler movement, named after one of the company's founders, was top of the line and it is running perfectly! It has a great looking Roman Numeral porcelain dial that is in great condition showing only two minor flakes (hardly noticeable) at the dial edge near 4 o'clock.
Elgin was the largest producer of timepieces in the world and here you can see why they were so successful. This is an early key wind key set (circa 1873) that is winding, running, and setting like the day it came from the factory. The blued steel hands are in great shape and the case lids and dust cover snap shut perfectly. The case hinges are solid rose gold and are offset for strength and longevity. If you are searching for a real nice silver hunter this may be the piece for you. Remember all of our timepieces come with our famous one year warranty for parts and labor so that you may buy with confidence.
This watch is big (18 size) and heavy! You better wear suspenders if ya carry it in your pocket! The case is coin silver (900 parts silver out of 1000. Sterling is 925 parts out of a 1000) and it has that mellow sheen just like sterling! This watch, made circa 1905, has a key wind and set movement. It has 15 jewels and runs great! The Elgin factory must have been an interesting place to work. I knew several of the "watch finishers" that worked there and their stories are quite interesting. One of them is a man who helped us technically when we first opened the doors of Father Time Antiques back in 1979. He told me that he started working at Elgin at the lowest position in the factory and his job was to sweep-up the various department floors and run parts whenever needed. Through the years he became more valuable to the factory as he learned at the elbow of fellow workers and also at the Elgin Watchmakers College. He worked in the Dial room, the Hairspring room,and virtually all the other departments until he became proficient and had achieved the ultimate technical position of "watch finisher". The "watch finisher" was the man who first gave life to the watch by placing the balance assembly into the watch and winding it for the first time. This man needed to have intimate knowledge of all the other operations in the factory in order to correct any problems that he might encounter once the watch started to tick or if, in fact, it didn't start to tick. This was a position of achievement and pride and carried a higher salary with it as a mark of technical accomplishment. He told me that during the depression when Elgin made some of their movements with a gold finish that he and his co-workers laughingly referred to the practice as the "Gold Standard", because Elgin had reduced their salaries by half to weather the storm of the economic downturn.
In later years I heard from some residents of Elgin that once the factory was slated for demolition (in 1965) there was a time when you could purchase 55 gallon drums of parts for their watches for $5.00 each. Another resident told me that the effluvial pipes that emptied waste water from the factory were harvested by some enterprising folks that knew that these pipes carried the waste from the plating and case rooms where many precious metals were used! The pipes, it seems, were like clogged arteries...clogged with gold! I can only imagine what these scrap pipes would bring at today's gold spot prices. One of the employees brought a home movie in 8mm to one of the local watch shows to show me the dynamiting of the iconic Elgin Watch Factory Clock Tower. He had the film in a hand-crank viewer and you could view the tower collapsing, and then, by cranking it backwards, see it re-assemble out of the rubble. It was both sad and interesting as this was the final blow to the once powerful Elgin edifice. There is, however, a physical remnant of the Elgin legacy and that is the Elgin National Watch Company Observatory. It stands to this day at 312 Watch Street in Elgin, Illinois just two blocks from the site of the factory. Our ability to keep time is based on our position in the universe and to determine that position you need a telescope and a way to determine the position of the stars relative to a fixed point on earth. The telescope that was erected in the Observatory had eleven vertical wires that were internal to the lens and when a celestial body was observed to cross one of the wires the astronomer would press a button that would send a signal to one of the Sidereal Clocks, Number 220, in the Observatory. The time thus determined would then be compared to the time on Sidereal clock Number 224 and the results were compared and then published in the American Ephemeris and Nautical Almanac. By this method accuracy could be determined to within 1/100 of a second. These results were relayed to the factory by an audible signal that would allow workers to accurately set their watches. Additionally this signal was sent to radio stations in later years where a listener might hear the phrase "at the tone the time will be". The announcer would state the time and then the tone would sound indicating the exact second of its passing. Elgin was quite proud of their observatory and adopted the tag line "ELGIN TAKES TIME FROM THE STARS AND PUTS IT IN YOUR POCKET"
Now you can own one of their really interesting watches that we have fully restored so that you can hand it down in your family.
The Victorians would call them "turnips" because they were so large and manly. This is a big watch in a solid sterling silver case! The case is an 18 size and the engraving is still crisp. There is no personalization of engraved initials in the designated area! It has a coin edge case middle that makes it easy to grip your hand to tell the time and impress your friends. The movement is spotless, displays 15 jewels, is lever set, and is running like new.
Made circa 1888 this wonderful pocket watch has stood the test of time. Notice how nice the Roman Numeral porcelain dial is.Yes, it has some minor hairlines but this is indicative of its age.
Our watchmakers have this wonderful watch winding, setting, and keeping time like it did back in the 19th century so that you may be the proud owner of a true antique. Remember, all of our timepieces come with our famous one year warranty for parts and labor so that you may buy with confidence.
Could it be that you are searching for an very unusual, one-of-a-kind, wristwatch? The sort of watch that you will not see walking up and down the boulevard. If that's the case then this may be where the buck stops. This is a Gallet Chronograph that started its life as a small pocket watch for timing ordinance and military maneuvers, but now since the trend is for larger wristwatches we are converting them for wrist use by adapting lugs to the original case just the way companies did when wristwatches first came into vogue. This is a hard one to find and, I think you will agree, that it is a stellar example that is just the right size measuring 43mm in diameter (including the crown guard) by 51mm from lug to lug. Large enough to be noticed and make a statement but not too large so that you feel like you are wearing a boat anchor on your wrist. Our master watchmakers have custom converted a beautiful "Art Deco" chronograph that is truly unique. Made circa 1925 it is not only unusual in a wrist configuration but also in the dial lay-out. You will notice that the hands that indicate the correct time appear in a subsidiary dial at the 12 o'clock position, while the full sized sweep second hand fills the entire dial for easy viewing of the event timing. To balance the symmetry of the dial the recorded minutes subsidiary dial is 180 degrees opposite the time dial. A very different look....no?
Now step back and take a look at the fabulous "Art Deco" stepped case with its concentric levels and flat pushers, and very unusual integral crown guard. Once you take it all in you will be mesmerized. The fifteen jewel movement is even nicer. It runs, winds, and keeps time like the day this watch left Switzerland some 87 years ago. It is all original with the exception of the lugs we have fashioned so that it may be worn on the wrist. If you really want something special then don't hesitate cause this is the only one you will ever see like this! Remember all of our timepieces come with our famous one year warranty for parts and labor so that you may buy with confidence.
The term ebauche means " movement in the gray." This is a watch that was imported by one of many companies that made sub-contracted watch movements for any of a number of watch companies that didn't make their own movements - or for a jeweler or department store here in the U.S. This watch has no name on the dial because it was imported by a small business that didn't order enough pieces to get their name put on the dial. If they had ordered, perhaps a minimum of 100 watches, the manufacturer in Switzerland would have put their name on the dial! This in no way speaks to the quality of the watch. Even Tiffany and Cartier use ebauche movements because they are not watch manufactures. This cool "Art Deco" watch, circa 1932, has a fine 15 jewel movement and the cosmetics are admirable by any standard of the time. The case is white , gold filled and measures 25mm wide by 38mm in length. Remember all of our timepieces come with our famous one year warranty for parts and labor so that you may buy with confidence.