Ball Brotherhood Cases

Jim Haney

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Ball Brotherhood cases are hard to find.

They were available thru the Brotherhood journal magazine and could be ordered with what ever union initials you wanted.

Here a 3 that I have picked up over the years, notice the "OF" in the logo's

Brotherhood of Railroad Trainmen.

Brotherhood of Locomotive Fireman & Enginemen

Brotherhood of Locomotive Firemen


DSCN3987.JPG DSCN3988.JPG DSCN3989.JPG DSCN3990.JPG DSCN3991.JPG

brotherhood case_001.JPG brotherhood case_002.JPG
 

musicguy

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Very nice.


Rob
 

Marty101

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John that is a good question for Jim,but I'd also like to know if these were made exclusively by one company? I know better than to take anything for granted in this hobby,but I have always assumed Ball made all of them...
 

terry hall

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but I have always assumed Ball made all of them...
Ball contracted their manufacture, incapable of case production..... why else would "ball model" cases have Crescent, Philadelphia, Keystone, or other case manufacturer markings??

Even the movement is a slippery subject... the debate on 'a manufacturer' continues....
 

johnbscott

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My purpose is to ascertain whether they are actually Ball Brotherhood cases, or simply Brotherhood-marked cases.
 

Jim Haney

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My purpose is to ascertain whether they are actually Ball Brotherhood cases, or simply Brotherhood-marked cases.
John,
As Terry has answered Ball didn't make any cases, or for that matter any watches, they had them made to their specifications.

These cases, with the multicolored letters were made by Wadsworth, as requested by the long running ad in the Brotherhood Journal Magazine as I stated in my OP.

These cases do not have Ball Model stamped in them like the stirrup Bow Patented cases do.
 

Jim Haney

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Thanks, Jim. Is there any chance of posting one of those ads, please?
John,
Do you know how to use the search tool on this MB?

Or do you know how to use Google?

Don't want to come across as a Smart A** but if you want to be a knowledgeable buyer/collector you must do some research.

You won't have some guys, like Larry T.,.around forever to answer questions.
 
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Jim Haney

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John,

My post above does sound a little harsh , but I don't mean it that way, just trying to make a point about people learning how to educate themselves if they are interested in the hobby, so here are some links for you to read and work on.

From this MB doing a search on BRT Cases,

https://mb.nawcc.org/attachments/45574-jpg.444643/


https://mb.nawcc.org/threads/ball-brt-18s-21j-triple-signed.70921/#post-531542

Google search

1914 Copy of the Journal, but no ads that I could find

The Railroad Trainman

And this google search on the Magazine, but I am not computer savvy enough to get to the ads info.

The railroad Trainmen journal - Google Search
 

johnbscott

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Jim, thank you for taking so much trouble to assist. I am sure that it is widely appreciated. You have raised a most interesting subject for discussion.

Thanks, too, for posting images of your wonderful Brotherhood watch cases. They are very beautiful and highly desirable. For myself, I have long admired those, but my watch funding has never stretched so far!

I am sure that cases like yours often contained Ball standard watch movements but that does not mean that they were Ball Brotherhood cases. For that to have been so, the cases would need to have been at least offered by Ball, if not made by Ball. I have never imagined that Ball made cases, by the way.

I have managed to collect a good selection of original Brotherhood Journals from before and after the turn of the 19th / 20th Century. I have BLE, BLF and BLF&E journals and all of them have Ball watch advertisements – which is why I wanted to have them. Most of the advertisements would be familiar to most of us because people have been good enough to post copies of them on this and other boards, over the years.

The only Brotherhood journal advertisements, that I have seen, that show case backs are the ones that publicise the availability of Ball Queen watches (not railroad standard watches), offering them as prizes for gathering magazine subscriptions. These are not advertisements by Ball and the Queen watches do not have Brotherhood markings.

I have also had the good fortune to be able to collect a good selection of Ball catalogs that cover many of the years from 1894 to 1922 and most of the progression of styles over that period. These Ball catalogs show images of Ball movements, dials and cases. There are Brotherhood case backs shown in several catalogs that date from around the turn of the century. They are all 18s and they all have the Brotherhood marking as a gold inlay in an oval-shaped surround on a silveroid case back. These are Ball Brotherhood cases and they are of a single style.

At least from 1900 (according to the Ball catalog of that year), each Ball watch was “Sold as a Complete Watch Only”. The 1903 catalog carries the first mention, that I have found, of “Ball Model” cases - although there is use of the term “Ball’s Model Antique Pendant and Bow” in the 1902 catalog.

Until about 1899, then, the Ball watch buyer would choose his own style of case and I do not doubt that many Ball watch buyers would have been attracted towards beautiful cases of the type that you have shown. Perhaps such cases could have been sourced through the Brotherhoods. It is interesting that they were on offer by the Burlington Watch Co.

Shown below, are images from the 1900 Ball catalog that illustrate a BLF-marked Ball case back and the corresponding dial. It becomes clear that true Ball Brotherhood cases were marketed by Ball and they were intended to house Ball Brotherhood-marked 18s movements.


40 - 25R.jpg 56 - 09R.jpg
 

Jim Haney

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My purpose is to ascertain whether they are actually Ball Brotherhood cases, or simply Brotherhood-marked cases.

John,
You have answered your own question with your above post and thanks for the example.

It is the only "true" brotherhood case sold through Ball with a Brotherhood movement that I have seen. I would like to see an actual example.

The Brotherhood cases I am showing are after market cases that were ordered thru the union journals and ended up with whatever movements were put in them.

I believe that they are nicer looking cases because the multicolored lettering looks better on Gold than Silveroid and the inlaid lettering was done with more style and detail.
 

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