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  1. #1

    Default 1860's Fusee in 18KT CONVERTIBLE case , runs fine, would like input!

    OK,let me start off by saying that I know I probably paid too much but when I saw this 18KT CASE,I just had to have it! I don’t think the movement is anything too special, except that it seems to be n excellent/near mint condition and runs very well. But that case!To convert between OF and HC ---- what engineering and craftsmanship! Fiendishly complicated, since I had NO prior experience with this case type, it took me an hour of careful, thoughtful manipulations to access all the covers without damaging anything. Photo 1 is the OF configuration, photos 2 & 3 the HC configuration. It measures 56mm and weighs 156 grams. So,I would like to ask a few things: 1) do any of you have a watch with a convertible case and if so would you mind posting a photo or two?,and 2) any general info on the movement or case would be appreciated(from some of the info I have read, the 25 Church St address would date this movement to an earlier time (pre 1830)than the case (1868)and yet the serial numbers match on both??) I have also posted this in "What's my watch worth forum for anyone interested. Thanks for any input in advance!
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  2. #2

    Default Re: 1860's Fusee in 18KT CONVERTIBLE case , runs fine, would like input! (By: docbooks)

    Hi docbooks, an absolutely Superb Pocket Watch Cased in America I think; lots of Josh Johnson movements were sent to America and Cased there. About the only thing that I can see that is wrong is the very small bit of the Hour Hand broken off. There are a few people who really know a lot about Josh Johnson movements on this forum. Regards Ray

  3. #3

    Default Re: 1860's Fusee in 18KT CONVERTIBLE case , runs fine, would like input! (By: Omexa)

    Thanks Ray!

  4. #4

    Default Re: 1860's Fusee in 18KT CONVERTIBLE case , runs fine, would like input! (By: docbooks)

    Outstanding watch all around. Congratulations. Thanks for sharing the images. Cheers.

  5. #5
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    Default Re: 1860's Fusee in 18KT CONVERTIBLE case , runs fine, would like input! (By: docbooks)

    That is just gorgeous - and worth more than a king's ransom whatever cash value anyone would put on it. I would have to disagree with your view that the movement is nothing too special as it is, for me, the pinnacle of English & Liverpool watchmaking of the period; the only way that it could be better is if it had a compensated balance. The 25 Church Street address appeared on Johnson watches well after 1830 so I wouldn't set too much store by that piece of evidence as a dating cue but I do agree that the movement is probably earlier than 1868. The matching serial numbers, case to movement, are only an indication that the case was made specifically for the movement and not necessarily at the same time.

    You will find that Oliver Mundy has collated and shared a database 'here' of Johnson watches which you may find useful and I feel sure that he will be along to comment once word gets around that your watch is on view; or you may wish to PM him and alert him to this thread as I am sure that he will be able to add to your story.

  6. #6

    Default Re: 1860's Fusee in 18KT CONVERTIBLE case , runs fine, would like input! (By: DaveyG)

    Wow....thanks so much for the info and input!
    Quote Originally Posted by DaveyG View Post
    That is just gorgeous - and worth more than a king's ransom whatever cash value anyone would put on it. I would have to disagree with your view that the movement is nothing too special as it is, for me, the pinnacle of English & Liverpool watchmaking of the period; the only way that it could be better is if it had a compensated balance. The 25 Church Street address appeared on Johnson watches well after 1830 so I wouldn't set too much store by that piece of evidence as a dating cue but I do agree that the movement is probably earlier than 1868. The matching serial numbers, case to movement, are only an indication that the case was made specifically for the movement and not necessarily at the same time.

    You will find that Oliver Mundy has collated and shared a database 'here' of Johnson watches which you may find useful and I feel sure that he will be along to comment once word gets around that your watch is on view; or you may wish to PM him and alert him to this thread as I am sure that he will be able to add to your story.

  7. #7

    Default Re: 1860's Fusee in 18KT CONVERTIBLE case , runs fine, would like input! (By: MrRoundel)

    Quote Originally Posted by MrRoundel View Post
    Outstanding watch all around. Congratulations. Thanks for sharing the images. Cheers.

  8. #8

    Default Re: 1860's Fusee in 18KT CONVERTIBLE case , runs fine, would like input!

    Here is a better photo of the inside of the rear cover
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  9. #9

    Default Re: 1860's Fusee in 18KT CONVERTIBLE case , runs fine, would like input!

    I'm glad to be able to read the engraving now...

    As was mentioned, this is an American-made case. And what a case it is! Here are excerpts from page 85 of Daniel Crossman's "A Complete History of Watch and Clock Making in America":

    "The firm subsequently became Durand, Carter, and Co., from 1850 to 1855..."

    "It may be said of his production in the case line that they have always been of the highest class of workmanship, and of a new and original design. Probably no case manufacturer in this country has done so much in the matter of producing really artistic work in gold cases as Mr. Durand (James)."

    I.E., You stepped up and scored a real gem! You'd best get yourself a copy of Crossman. Cheers.

    BTW: There was a member of the family named Silas Durand. He had been a bank-note engraver. It sure looks like he might have had a "hand" in engraving this one.

  10. #10

    Default Re: 1860's Fusee in 18KT CONVERTIBLE case , runs fine, would like input! (By: MrRoundel)

    Thanks much for your input! I'll go on ABE books and see if I can find a copy of Crossman! At the risk of sounding repetitive, the construction and craftsmanship of this watch just blows me away! I keep putting it away, but 10 minutes later I get the urge to inspect again.... I guess that will get old after awhile
    Quote Originally Posted by MrRoundel View Post
    I'm glad to be able to read the engraving now...

    As was mentioned, this is an American-made case. And what a case it is! Here are excerpts from page 85 of Daniel Crossman's "A Complete History of Watch and Clock Making in America":

    "The firm subsequently became Durand, Carter, and Co., from 1850 to 1855..."

    "It may be said of his production in the case line that they have always been of the highest class of workmanship, and of a new and original design. Probably no case manufacturer in this country has done so much in the matter of producing really artistic work in gold cases as Mr. Durand (James)."

    I.E., You stepped up and scored a real gem! You'd best get yourself a copy of Crossman. Cheers.

    BTW: There was a member of the family named Silas Durand. He had been a bank-note engraver. It sure looks like he might have had a "hand" in engraving this one.

  11. #11

    Default Re: 1860's Fusee in 18KT CONVERTIBLE case , runs fine, would like input! (By: MrRoundel)

    That's a scarce book---- I could only find ONE copy after searching ABE, Amazon and Ebay. It's on its way. Thanks!
    Quote Originally Posted by MrRoundel View Post
    I'm glad to be able to read the engraving now...

    As was mentioned, this is an American-made case. And what a case it is! Here are excerpts from page 85 of Daniel Crossman's "A Complete History of Watch and Clock Making in America":

    "The firm subsequently became Durand, Carter, and Co., from 1850 to 1855..."

    "It may be said of his production in the case line that they have always been of the highest class of workmanship, and of a new and original design. Probably no case manufacturer in this country has done so much in the matter of producing really artistic work in gold cases as Mr. Durand (James)."

    I.E., You stepped up and scored a real gem! You'd best get yourself a copy of Crossman. Cheers.

    BTW: There was a member of the family named Silas Durand. He had been a bank-note engraver. It sure looks like he might have had a "hand" in engraving this one.

  12. #12

    Default Re: 1860's Fusee in 18KT CONVERTIBLE case , runs fine, would like input!

    Excellent. I'm glad that you're getting the book. I got my copy when NAWCC Chapter 149 was selling a reprint that was "Prepared from microfilm, and edited by Donald L. Dawes: 2002".

    BTW: I guess you saw that it was written by Charles Crossman, not Daniel. Doh! I'm sure that didn't make your search any easier. Sorry about that.

    BTW II: Page 81 has more information on Durand. In a section on C. Jacot, and Bro. watch cases, Crossman states that a convertible watch case design patent (almost certainly for your type) was assigned to them by Charles Durand in 1852. I'd take this to mean that your case was probably made between 1850 and 1852, making it before 1868, as was mentioned above. I wonder how that fits in with the movement date?

  13. #13
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    Default Re: 1860's Fusee in 18KT CONVERTIBLE case , runs fine, would like input! (By: MrRoundel)

    Quote Originally Posted by MrRoundel View Post
    I wonder how that fits in with the movement date?
    I'd say that isn't too far adrift - but how can that be reconciled with the 1868 Patent date in the case?

  14. #14

    Default Re: 1860's Fusee in 18KT CONVERTIBLE case , runs fine, would like input! (By: MrRoundel)

    I think that the most likely explanation was from another poster (on another thread?), that the movement may be of a little earlier date and then shipped to the USA and at some point (1868ish?) the case was made for that specific movement. But, I'm learning quite a bit from ya'll, so I'll keep watching!
    Quote Originally Posted by MrRoundel View Post
    Excellent. I'm glad that you're getting the book. I got my copy when NAWCC Chapter 149 was selling a reprint that was "Prepared from microfilm, and edited by Donald L. Dawes: 2002".

    BTW: I guess you saw that it was written by Charles Crossman, not Daniel. Doh! I'm sure that didn't make your search any easier. Sorry about that.

    BTW II: Page 81 has more information on Durand. In a section on C. Jacot, and Bro. watch cases, Crossman states that a convertible watch case design patent (almost certainly for your type) was assigned to them by Charles Durand in 1852. I'd take this to mean that your case was probably made between 1850 and 1852, making it before 1868, as was mentioned above. I wonder how that fits in with the movement date?

  15. #15

    Default Re: 1860's Fusee in 18KT CONVERTIBLE case , runs fine, would like input! (By: DaveyG)

    See the post below - and thanks for the input!
    Quote Originally Posted by DaveyG View Post
    I'd say that isn't too far adrift - but how can that be reconciled with the 1868 Patent date in the case?

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