Burlington Special

LStratton

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Sep 14, 2000
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I picked up an Illinois Burlington Special today and know nothing about it as I am primarily a South Bend collector. Burlington Watch Co. U.S.A., SN 1984565, 16s, LS, 21 ruby jewels, adjusted temperature, isochronism, 6 positions, double roller, gilt lettering, gold screwdown jewel settings, beautiful wavey checkerboard damaskeening. This is a higher quality watch than the typical Burlington. The dial is DS and marked Burlington Special. The case is also marked The Burlington Watch Co. and guaranteed 25 years. I have went thru all the books that I have and have come up with nothing. What is this?
 

LStratton

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I picked up an Illinois Burlington Special today and know nothing about it as I am primarily a South Bend collector. Burlington Watch Co. U.S.A., SN 1984565, 16s, LS, 21 ruby jewels, adjusted temperature, isochronism, 6 positions, double roller, gilt lettering, gold screwdown jewel settings, beautiful wavey checkerboard damaskeening. This is a higher quality watch than the typical Burlington. The dial is DS and marked Burlington Special. The case is also marked The Burlington Watch Co. and guaranteed 25 years. I have went thru all the books that I have and have come up with nothing. What is this?
 

Rhett Lucke

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Lyle,

It sounds like you've picked up a fairly scarce variation of the Burlington Special. A small amount of these were made from higher quality Sangamo grade movements which I believe yours might be. I'm not sure how many are around, but I've only seen one (which I foolishly traded a few years back).

I believe it should be listed in Ehrhardt and Meggers "Volume 2, American Pocket Watches, Illinois Watch Co." book.

I dont have a book handy but you could verify this by looking up the serial number. If I'm correct, the serial number should be listed as a Sangamo grade.

Great snag,

Rhett



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B

Barry G

Shugart has a listing for a "Burlington W. Co., 21J, Adj. 6P, GJS" on page 272 of the 2002 edition of his "Complete Price Gudie to Watches." It sounds like this may be your watch.

There is no indication that this is a particularly rare watch, but I agree that this is higher quality than the ones you typically see that were only adjusted to 3 positions. Of all the Burlingotn Specials, this is the only on that could actually be considered "railroad grade" I think.

Barry

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My Online Pocket Watch Collection
 

John Cote

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Lyle,

This just shows what a guy who knows watches can find. I have always wanted one of these Burlingtons, and have thought that I would find one on a mart table at the normal Burlington price, but I guess smart guys like you always get to them first. ;)

As Rhett guessed, this watch is one of 100 Sangamo grade movements that were ordered by Burlington Watch Co. in Chicago. Burlington did order a variety of grades from Illinois, and some were slightly better than others, but this version is certainly the king. Enough of these have been seen to believe that the entire run of 100, from 1,984,511-1,984,610 were all marked for Burlington.

Congrats on digging up a really nice watch.

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JohnCote
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Rhett Lucke

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John,

Thanks for confirming my suspisions. Being at the office, I was unable to check the serial number lists. BTW, if I remember correctly the dial on the one I owned was somewhat unique.

Rhett

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LStratton

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Many thanks to Rhett, John and Barry for the info.
I compared this watch to a 21 ruby jewel Sangamo SN 1567553. The plate configuration is the same but the Burlington has a 2-tone movement with a gold regulator and all gold screws. Was all 100 in this run the same?
Thanks again
 

John Cote

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Lyle,

Nobody can be completely sure that all 100 were Burlingtons, but enough have been seen spread through the run that you have to believe that this was the case.

Can you post some pix of the movement and dial?

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JohnCote
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John Cote

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Kent

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Very Nice, Thanks to both of you for the pictures and for posting them!

Kent :)
 

Ariel

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John, I believe Jon Hanson posted two of these watches on the 149 message board for Ed Uberall last year!

Ariel
 

John Cote

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Ariel,

I remember Jon's posts, but then if you look at my first reply above, it makes sense that Jon would have found some of these beautiful watches over the years. As has been said over and over, knowledge is the best detector of fine goods.

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JohnCote
President, Indiana Chapter 18 - NAWCC
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L

lots of time

Yup, I agree John, knowledge is the best detector of fine goods, unfortunatly, available cash is the best means of aquiring fine goods...
 

Ariel

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I disagree, knowledge assists in advantageous buys and conversely big bucks doesn't necessarily buy the best watches.

Ariel
 
L

lots of time

Of course Ariel! No argument there,, Some with limited resourses may even use their knowledge to ensure that the purchases they do make are the best for the buck. Some with unlimited resourses can spend their money on overpriced junk... Bottom line as far as the money thing is concerned, Cash talks, BS walks.. As it was in the beginning, is now and ever shall be. There are so many watches out there that I, and im sure many others on here can only "drool" over. Good thing "drooling" is also fun!!
 

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