Early Patek Philippe Wristwatch for Tiffany


Registered User
Oct 27, 2009
Hey Everyone,

Just picked this up at an estate sale and wanted to get some opinions on whether this watch started out as a wristwatch or pocket watch and if there is anyway to tell for sure. The dial surely looks more like it was intended as a wristwatch, and very much like the photos of the early "Officers" watch by Patek.

The watch is fully signed Tiffany on the dial, movement and 18k case. The serial number of 147227 dates the movement to being made about 1908-1910 according to my research. It is my understanding that the complete watch could have been assembled several years later. The watch case also bares the number 147227 on both the outside and inside back covers. The movement appears to be a 12L size and the case measures 33mm accross without the crown. The back of the dial has "PP Cie" written into the enamel. The hands appear to have been replaced at some point.

I would like to contact Patek for any records they may have as well as Tiffany. Could anyone give me any advise on best ways of contacting and/or who to speak with?

I would invite any and all opinions or comments that you may have.


Kurtis Meyers 73618.jpg 73619.jpg 73620.jpg 73621.jpg 73622.jpg 73623.jpg


Registered User
Jan 19, 2004
I was the underbidder at that sale. If you go to the Patek website and look at the site map you will see a link that says 'extract from the archives'. Go there and you can follow the Patek instructions. You will have to pay round about $100 for an extract.


Kate N

Registered User
Jun 13, 2005
Patek Philippe will gladly help you by searching their archives.
It is not a free service, however.
Tiffany & Co. will not be able to assist you.
Here is a quote from their website regarding their archived watch information:
Tiffany & Co. retailed many watches for more than 160 years. For the most part, these watches were not manufactured by the company but were made by other watchmakers. The watches which we are able to research are those for which the customer can provide the original purchase date. Unfortunately, the Archives does not contain any information on watches made by other manufacturers and retailed by Tiffany & Co.

It is difficult for anyone to say with certainty (aside from PP), but your watch appears to have been made as a wristwatch.
Why do you think that the hands were changed?
They don't appear to be a mismatch.
Congratulations on a very nice estate sale find!



Registered User
Oct 27, 2009
Thanks to Luca and Kate for the great information. I will go to the Patek website and request an extract and avoid the Tiffany route.

As for the hands I have been unable to find any Patek watches from the time period using this style of hand. All that I have been able to find are either Breguet or Spade hands although I assume thay would have used others. The hands on it do match although they appear to have been modified to fit.

Thanks Again,



New User
Dec 31, 2009
Great watch Kurtis, I’m jealous.
I am very interested in your watch as I am researching the invention and early history of the wristwatch. There is a great deal of misinformation on this subject and no-one seems to have written a properly documented account. Many famous manufacturers claim to have invented the modern wristwatch including Cartier, Omega, Girard Perregaux and Patek Phillippe!
Here are my thoughts on your watch.
Your watch falls exactly in the period when it all “kicked off”. The earliest purpose made ladies wristwatch I have seen with a cast-iron date is 1907 and the earliest gents 1908. There are a great many wristwatches out there with earlier movements (by serial number) but cases of uncertain date.
You have correctly identified your watch as one of these. The movement was certainly manufactured for a ladies pocket watch as the seconds hand, if it had one, would be positioned opposite the crown. I believe yours also has a hollow centre pinion, also not usual on wristwatch movements. A snap-on dial is typical of earliest wristwatches, as it enabled the dial to be orientated as fashion dictated. A watch resembling yours, with a serial number dating the movement to 1902 and also without a seconds hand, is shown on the Omega website.
The case of your watch is typical of early wristwatches. I suspect it was made as a wrist watch by a manufacturer whose only experience was making ladies fob watches. The double bottomed case is common on early wristwatches.
The style/look of your watch with curly numerals and curved bezel is typical of the Art Nouveau period.
All this points to a purpose made wristwatch of around 1908 -1910. You can imagine the scenario; wristwatches for men have just become a daring new fashion accessory; the top retailers scramble to fulfill orders using stock movements and new custom-made cases; your watch falls exactly into this period and is thus very interesting.
Within a year or so the whole scene changed, with the ebauche manufacturers bringing to market fully developed wrist watch movements with sub seconds at 3 o’clock and reduced height.
If anyone wants to pick holes in my argument be my guest.
If anyone can help establish the early history of the wristwatch with dated pictures or dated watches I would be very pleased. The earliest dated picture I have found of a soldier wearing a wristwatch is 1888. By 1899 wristwatches commonly appear in Boer War photographs but I know of no surviving watches. Does anyone have one with genuine provenance? I’d love to see it.
Thankyou Kurtis for the excellent pictures. Could I use them one day if I publish my research? Strictly not for profit mind!


Registered User
Oct 27, 2009
Thanks Eddy for the wonderfully positive information. My request to Patek for an extract from their archives on the watch has been made. Hopefully this will shed even more light on it's history.

Please feel free to use the photos.

If anyone has any further comments or opinions they would be happily recieved.




Registered User
Oct 27, 2009
Hey Everyone,

Just recieved the extract from the Patek Philippe Archives confirming that the movement of this watch was made by them in 1907 and sold to Tiffany on January 11th, 1908. It was not sold with a case. Further research has revealed that most if not all of Tiffany's watches from the 1890s and early 1900s were finished movements cased by Tiffany.

The signed and correctly numbered case was apparently made by or for Tiffany in the U.S. due to tarriff restrictions on gold. The movement was probably originally intended for a pendent watch, but a new dial was made that did not have seconds, and then movement and dial cased as an early wristwatch. The date that this would have occured, and the piece subsequently sold, will perhaps always remain a mystery, but I hope not...

Any reflections, opinions or comments would be appreciated.



Jeff Hess

Gold Business Member
Sep 3, 2000
Conventional wisdom, currently is that Tiffany watches up to around 12k to 14k in serial number were made by Tiffany at their own factory in Switzerland.

Some researchers have suggested this and some disagree.

Also, I thought the tarrif was an attempt to save the USA's watch business from the cheaper Swiss imports, not on gold.

In other words, at least the case had to be made in the usa.

Regardless.....nice watch...

Know Your NAWCC Forums Rules!

NAWCC Forums

Forum statistics

Latest member
Encyclopedia Pages
Total wiki contributions
Last edit
Swiss Fake by Kent