View Full Version : The Hammond Special Buffalo N.Y.

02-20-2012, 03:00 AM
I'm trying to get some information on a pocket watch which belonged to my grandfather, but can't seem to find the name "The Hammond Special" in the encyclopedia. It's a 17 jewel movement # 1020973. In a Philadelphia watch Co silverode case # 805557. My grandfather had ties with America and I'm trying to find the watch's date and place of origin to help with our family history, any help would be appreciated
Regards Sean.

Jim Haney
02-20-2012, 05:04 AM
Frank Hmmond was a RR inspector and had a Jewelery store in Buffalo, NY. His watches that he ordered from Hamilton Watch Co, Lancaster, Pa. had his name on the movement or dial or both and his dial usually had a "H' in script under Hamilton on some models.

02-20-2012, 05:45 AM
Thanks for that information Jim, the name Hammond is on the movement and the initials T.H.S. in script on the dial, but no H underneath. Thats a great help. If, as you say the movement is probably Hamilton I can try to find a data-base to tie the # to a date. After surfing through posts on this site I've learnt a little, thanks guys!
Regards Sean.

John Cote
02-20-2012, 07:46 AM
I would love to see photos of this if you could post some. The Serial number you give (1020973) corresponds to a 16 size 23 jewel grade 950 lever set watch made in about 1913. We don't see these 23 jewel watches with private label names all that often, especially at this late date. The 950 is a very high grade watch. It was popular and it is by no means scarce but one with a PL name on the dial and movement is certainly interesting and worth a look. If you need help posting the photos I would be glad to help.

Jim Haney
02-20-2012, 08:41 AM
I am afraid that I didn't give you enought information. Frank Hammond also was an agent for other watch companies, besides Hamilton and the watch you have may be Elgin or Illinois, etc.

As John said we need a picture of the movement to help you with accurate information.

By now, you get the concept, of private label watches.

02-20-2012, 10:26 AM
I have an 18s watch signed "The Hammond Special", although, mine is a hampden. I'll post pics when i dig it out.

Its a partial movement only, no dial. :(

02-20-2012, 01:30 PM
Hi John
I have attached the images you asked for hope this helps.
Regards Sean

02-20-2012, 01:54 PM
Its a Hampden Watch, i have the same watch, minus the dial on mine.

I'll check my watch when i get it out.

02-20-2012, 08:38 PM
It is a Model 3, Grade 81 made about 1895, Nearly 17000 of this grade were made in 28 runs but don't know how many were marked Hammond Special.

02-21-2012, 01:39 AM
Thanks for the info Richec, where can I find a movement picture of the model 3 grade 81?. I've found one that looks very similar @ hamilton ball serial numbers & grade discriptions. But that pic puts it as a 924 18 movement
regards Sean.

02-21-2012, 03:02 AM
It's not a Hamilton,but rather a Hampden.

02-21-2012, 05:50 AM
With all respect to Henry Burgell, I'm not certain that it is a Hampden Watch Co. grade No. 81.

Based upon the damaskeening pattern, I believe that this is a grade identified in The Hampden Watch Co., NAWCC Special Order Supplement #1, J. Hernick and R. Arnold, NAWCC, Columbia, PA, 1997, as a "3-Ball" grade (not to be confused in any way with the products of the Ball Watch Co.). Pictures of both grades, the No. 81 and the "3-Ball", may be seen on pages 24 and 25 of that book. Of course, the "3-Ball" grade may simply be a fancy version of the grade No. 81.

The run 1,020,501 - 1,021,000 has some unusual movements. Ed and I have the following in our data base:

1,020,586 - Probably grade No. 81
1,020,863 - Probably grade No. 81
1,020,887 - Railway
1,020,892 - "The Governor" a Tu-Tone movement
1,020,973 - Possibly a "3 Ball" grade, "The Hammond Special" - just added due to this thread

As a reminder, information in our data base is subject to error, either in reporting or in entering data. Until more examples of Railway grade show up with similar serial numbers, I suspect serial number 1,020,887 as being an error.


I'm looking forward to seeing the pictures and serial number of your "The Hammond Special".

02-21-2012, 06:37 AM
From the swirled plate damasking, Possiblities are it is either a 3 Ball (17 Jewel) or a John Hancock (21 Jewel). Since it is 17 Jewel, thus it is a "3 Ball". It is an Open Face Model 3 17 Jewel Movement.
Interesting-earliest 3 Ball I have seen. The earliest OF 3 Ball I have in the database is 1052001. The earliest HC 3 Ball I have is 1929001.
This run is full of Special Labels, which makes it difficult to assign a generic grade for all watches, because Special Labels tend to be "Special".

Very nice movement and not a lot of 3 Balls around. Current Production estimates on 3 Balls are 1500 for the OF (your watch), and 1750 for the HC watch.

The picture (from Fred Hansen's website- http://www.fhwatch.com ) I attached is a similar 3 Ball, although it is later (1281321)

02-21-2012, 03:46 PM
Thanks for that informative thread Henry & Kent, and everyone involved. I'm still trying to digest all this information. Bet my old grandad is sitting back somewhere with a glass of Three Swallows having a good laugh at the mischief he's created!. Apart from the long needle from the wheel hub to an assembly on the right, thats my watch. My next port of call is a jewellers shop to see if they can get it running.

02-21-2012, 03:50 PM
Sorry I ment left......Doh!

02-21-2012, 03:58 PM
... the long needle from the wheel hub to an assembly ....

That's a pocket watch regulator. Your watch has a Teske regulator (http://mb.nawcc.org/attachment.php?attachmentid=70079&d=1283033172) while the picture that Henry put up is a later movement and it has a starwheel rack & pinion style regulator.

02-21-2012, 06:37 PM
I checked my FHS, mine is 7 away from this movement that is posted....

02-21-2012, 08:10 PM
That's neat!

Thanks for posting the picture,

02-22-2012, 05:52 AM
Reviewing the run again 1,020,501 - 1,021,000, Ed and I have the following in our data base:

1,020,586 - Probably grade No. 81
1,020,777 - "The Governor" - which I missed the first time
1,020,863 - Probably grade No. 81
1,020,887 - Railway - ???????
1,020,892 - "The Governor" a Tu-Tone movement
1,020,973 - "3 Ball" grade, "The Hammond Special" - just added due to this thread
1,020,980 - "3 Ball" grade, "The Hammond Special" - just added due to this thread

Does anybody have any others from this run to report?

02-22-2012, 07:07 AM
No sightings here. I changed the last 100 watches to 3 Ball.

Just an FYI - the next run 1021000 to 1022000 the database is blank (No observations).

02-22-2012, 08:29 AM
Ed and I don't have anything listed in the 1021000 to 1022000 range, but we wouldn't have recorded any Hampden movements below 16-size, or in this era, having less than 17 jewels.