AMERICAN WATCH CO., WALTHAM [ American Watch Co., 沃爾瑟姆] | A RARE SMALL GOLD OPEN-FACED KEYLESS LEVER WATCH WITH ROCK CRYSTAL MOVEMENT CIRCA 1890 [ 罕有小型黃金懷錶備水晶機芯，年份約1890]
AMERICAN WATCH CO., WALTHAM
[ American Watch Co., 沃爾瑟姆]
A RARE SMALL GOLD OPEN-FACED KEYLESS LEVER WATCH WITH ROCK CRYSTAL MOVEMENT
• Movement: 4 size gilt brass with gold wheel train and crystal bridges, straight line lever escapement, cut bi-metallic balance, free sprung Breguet balance spring
• Dial: white enamel with black Arabic numerals and outer red five-minute divisions, gold filigree hands
• Case: possibly later gold with glazed front and back, decoratively engraved bezels
diameter 37 mm
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Movement running at the time of cataloguing
Case in good condition, possible recased however images from advertisement show that they did make rock crystal plates in these types of cases.
Dial in good condition with a hairline between 11 and 12
The lot is sold in the condition it is in at the time of sale. The online condition report is provided to assist you with assessing the condition of the lot and is for guidance purposes only. The images of the lot also form part of the online condition report for the lot provided by Sotheby's. Any reference to condition in the online condition report does not amount to a full description of condition. The online condition report may make reference to particular imperfections of the lot but you should note that the lot may have other faults not expressly referred to in the online condition report of the lot or shown in the online images of the lot (for example, the online condition report may not specify mechanical replacements or imperfections to the movement, case, dial, pendulum, separate base(s) or dome). Watches in water-resistant cases have been opened to examine movements but no warranties are made that the watches are currently water-resistant. The online condition report may not refer to all faults, restoration, alteration or adaptation because Sotheby's is not a professional conservator or restorer but rather the online condition report is a statement of subjective, qualified opinion genuinely held by Sotheby's (for example, information regarding colour, clarity and weight of gemstones are statements of opinion only and not statements of fact by Sotheby's). Please also note that we do not guarantee the authenticity of any individual component parts, such as wheels, hands, crowns, crystals, screws, bracelets and wrist bands, since subsequent repairs and restoration work may have resulted in the replacement of original parts. In addition, certain images of the lot provided online may not accurately reflect the actual condition of the lot (for example, the online images may represent colours and shades which are different to the lot's actual colour and shades). For these reasons, the online condition report is not an alternative to taking your own professional advice regarding the condition of the lot. Prospective buyers should also refer to the Buying at Auction guide which includes important notices concerning the type of property in this sale. In particular, please note it is the purchaser's responsibility to comply with any applicable import and export matters, particularly in relation to lots incorporating materials from endangered species. Please be advised that wristbands made of materials derived from endangered or otherwise protected species (i.e. alligator and crocodile) are not sold with the watches and are for display purposes only. We reserve the right to remove these bands prior to shipping. NOTWITHSTANDING THIS ONLINE CONDITION REPORT OR ANY DISCUSSIONS CONCERNING A LOT, ALL LOTS ARE OFFERED AND SOLD "AS IS" IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE CONDITIONS OF BUSINESS (ONLINE ONLY).
The rock crystal plate movements were made during the late 1880s and early 1890s by William R. Willis, foreman of the jewel department at the Waltham Watch Company. According to an account about rock crystal plate watches, it is said that Mr. Willis returned from a Mexican vacation with a large quantity of agate and rock crystal. It is thought that he made approximately 200 stone movements, primarily in 6 size, with crystal back plates only. For a detailed article about watches with Waltham Crystal Plates see, the Gerrit A. Nijssen and Carl B. Goetz, NAWCC Bulletin, No. 243, "Waltham's Crystal Plates," April 2003, pp. 172-190
For similar examples see: Sotheby's New York, Masterpieces from the Time Museum, Part IV, Vol. III, 14 & 15 October 2004, lots 1018 & 1019. See also: D. Hoke, The Time Museum Historical Catalogue of American Pocket Watches, 1991, cat. 53, p. 131 and front cover image.