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(Elgin) Private Label Research

Lee Passarella

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Here's mine: Grade 82 Elgin, 18s 13j (?), c. 1888, marketed by Goddard & Moses, a jewelry shop in downtown Richmond, VA. They apparently pushed a number of Elgins in the 1880s and 90s. I've seen several G&M-branded Elgins online. An OK watch in a really nice Fahy's Conqueror case.

IMG_0403.JPG IMG_0404.JPG IMG_0405.JPG
 

musicguy

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Convertible Elgin's are some of my favorite watches.
You do have a nice PL Elgin grade 50 convertible. In reference to being an original case
it does look like there is an extra case screw mark.

20190325_171952[1].jpg

Rob
 

steamer471

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Yes it looks as if one screw is missing from the movement. I think I didn't have it mounted to the case in that shot.
 

steamer471

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I checked when I got home. The only screwmarks on the case are where the screws are now. That cut out has no screw marks, interesting. No other cut outs in the rim. Since convertible movements are case specific it would be hard to say any is truly original cased. Do other maker s make convertibles? I guess I just get excited over a new watch.
 

Rick Hufnagel

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They're not exactly case specific. They fit older style 16s cases that are a touch larger than the standard ones of the early-mid 1900s. The 16s movements of the time made by Elgin, illinois, Hampden, and I'm sure others all took this size. Making the stem work on the convertible would just take a stem that fit it.

I call them 16 1/2 size... I don't know where I picked that up or how accurate it is. Or just early 16s cases.
 

musicguy

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Can we see the dial on this one above Greg


Rob
 

musicguy

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That's a great looking movement and case, that movement looks new.


Rob
 

Rick Hufnagel

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Interesting thing about 246713 above. All the serial numbers on all the parts of the watch have a the "1" stamped over a "0". Exception is the barrel, and the balance cock. The barrel bridge, on the top it has no double stamping, but the underside of it does. Guess this sucker started its life as 246703, and ended up as 246713 by the time it left the Elgin factory.

IMG_20190505_145703581.jpg IMG_20190505_144633805.jpg IMG_20190505_144229475.jpg
 

Rick Hufnagel

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H.H. Taylor sn. 75565

Private label for Pike and Trownsell, Tuscola Ill

National watch co. Single sunk dial
G.w. Ladd gold filled case.

Pike and Trownsell was a retail jewelery store in Tuscola, Ill from 1865-1875.

Albert H. Pike 1848-1911
Retail and manufacturing jeweler
Also served as vice president of Aurora Watch Co from 1883-86

Capt. Peter Trownsell 1842-1893
Also served a stint as mayor in Tuscola
Moved to Escondito Ca in 1887 and founded the Escondido Times newspaper. Died of consumption in 1893.

IMG_20190820_235439237_BURST000_COVER_TOP.jpg IMG_20190820_235412300_BURST000_COVER_TOP.jpg
 

Rick Hufnagel

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J.T. Ryerson sn 254650

Private label for Frank Carr, Hallowell Me.
Movement and dial marked!
Cut-out balance cock

According to Maine silver, watches, and jewelery, makers and dealers from 1760- early 1900s (Maine state museum, Augusta Me.):

Frank Carr was in business from 1867-89
On Jly and W st.

In the annual registry of Maine, 1870, he is listed on Water St, Hallowell.

Gravesite records indicate he was born 1842, and died March 29, 1894 and is buried in Hallowell village cemetery, which is also located on Water st.

Hallowell Maine is located on the Kennebec river. North of Brunswick off of I-95. Water st. Seems to be the main road through the town center.

Thanks and have a great day!
I tried some new lighting for these pics, sorry if it seems really bright.

IMG_20190831_171656273_HDR.jpg IMG_20190831_171649133_HDR.jpg
 

Rick Hufnagel

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G.M. Wheeler #304604

Movement signed Chas. H. O. Fox, Frederick, MD.

ENWCo. Single sunk dial

Cut out balance cock, 11 jewels, slow train (16,200)

Chas H. O. Fox was a watchmaker and later jeweler in Frederick MD.

He was from Schaumburg-lippe, and the earliest records I found of him in America is in 1850.

As a story told in my family, in the early half of the 1800s, many Germans emigrated to the u.s. because of the madness of government and taxes in Germany at that time.

In the census records in 1850 and 1860 he was listed as a watchmaker. 1870 and 1880 listed as jeweler. He owned a watch and clock store in Frederick MD during and after the civil war, as.youll see in one of the links below. He also used the war in his advertising, there's a few good snippits to check out that I found on a great website.

He was born in 1817 died 1893. Buried in Mt. Olivet cemetery, in Frederick.

Here's some great links to check out! Some awesome newspaper clippings of advertisements. Make sure you click on the scan tab at the bottom of the page to actually see the clipping! All three links are different

Historic Newspapers | Crossroads of War

Historic Newspapers | Crossroads of War

Historic Newspapers | Crossroads of War

IMG_20190918_162341124.jpg IMG_20190918_162710057_HDR.jpg
 

Jerry Treiman

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Interesting to me that there are apparently a number of these private-label Elgins that made their way to Australia.
Here is an early 12-size keywind that was cased in England and then exported to Australia where it was apparently sold by S. Bennett in the copper mining town of Kadina. It is a 7-jewel grade 30 (700 made) in a London hallmarked sterling hunting case from 1875.
365410_m.jpg 365410_d.jpg
 

Rick Hufnagel

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Grade 335. Sn 12837042
17 jewels

Private label for C.W. Livergood, Reinbeck, Ia.

Couldn't pass up a great movement and dial marked private label, but unfortunately the USPS lost the package, and ill never see it. The seller allowed me to use the pictures.

Wed Oct 3 1934 Globe Gazette tidbit on Mr. Livergood.

Screenshot_20191010-154241.png Screenshot_20191010-154249.png Globe_Gazette_Wed__Oct_3__1934_.jpg
 

Rick Hufnagel

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Grade 130, 0s, 15 jewels

Private Label for Tappin's Diamond Palace.

Movement and Dial marked, dial having a nice "TD" logo for Tappin's Diamonds

Paraphrased from "Landmarks of Rensselaer county New York, volume 2"

Samuel C. Tappin was born Nov 30, 1844 in Troy, New York. His father was an English immigrant.

Samuel Tappin entered work at the jewelery store of Emanuel Marks when he was about 14 years old. He stayed there for 19 years untill 1877 when he went into business for himself.

His first store was located at 286 River St. Then he moved to #1 Keenan building.

He imported Diamonds, gems, silver, french China, novelties, really a little bit of everything. His specialty was making and resetting diamond jewelry.

Sept 14, 1898 Jewelers circular notes that he is underway with extensive improvements and changes to his store, Tappin's Diamond Palace. Just thought that was a neat tidbit.

He died Aug 24, 1917 and rests in Oakwood cemetary, Troy, New York.
(Death records and "find a grave")

In our private label list, we also have Elgin Sn 2697766. A grade 103, movement and dial marked "Sam'l Tappin, Troy, NY"

This is a beautifully damaskeened movement, but I couldn't get the words and design visible in the same picture.

IMG_20191015_194031714.jpg IMG_20191015_193853169.jpg
 
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musicguy

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Very nice Rick
Very recently I've seen one of these same Tappin PL's, Troy NY
it has different hands and dial signature.



Rob
 
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musicguy

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It's interesting to me that some cities(and states) have a lot more PL watches
than others. I have seen more than a few from Troy, NY in fact I have
an Illinois PL from that city(a small city in upstate NY). PL are some of the most enjoyable to research!!
" Troy is home to Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, the oldest private engineering and technical university in the US, founded in 1824" (Troy wiki)



Rob
 
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Rick Hufnagel

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Jim, thanks for linking that to this thread! It's a great one

One of my favorite Elgin Private labels is posted there by John Pavlik. It's an H.H. Taylor grade.

It's got it all! Early stemwinder, cut out balance cock, amazing condition, and it's a D.C. Private label...

Sense some envy?? Hahaha

It is absolutely worth a look here:
Private Label photos ... All 50 states

That's a direct link to the one I am talking about in the thread Jim mentioned
 

viclip

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Here's a private label from Markham, Ontario, Canada. So many Canadian private label watches used Omega Regina movements that I'm glad to have come across this 18s. Elgin specimen at an antique sale that I attended yesterday.

The dial is signed "A. & H. Wideman". Brothers Albert & Henry in February of 1902 started the ''A & H Wideman, Hardware and Jewellers" establishment in a store they built at 85-87 Main Street N., Markham. As of 2002 that building was still standing. Judging from their advertisements for hardware, jewellery, music records, and CPR tickets, their business was apparently quite successful and enduring.

While the "Canadian" dial of this non-railroad grade watch is specially signed, the Elgin movement was not co-signed in the brothers' names. The 17j. movement is housed in a Canadian-made yellow gold-filled case featuring a horse on its back cover.

Wideman Dial.jpg Wideman  Mvt.jpg

Wideman CaseInfo.jpg Wideman Back.jpg
 

Rick Hufnagel

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Dial and movement marked for:
Goddard and Moses, Richmond VA.

Grade 82, model 3.

This one has been sitting here for a while and I wanted to work on something familiar.

According to their advertising, I've got them in buisness from around 1878-1891

You will see here 12th annual Christmas sale. Dec of 1890 in "The Times" from Richmond VA. 1878 would then be the first one.
The times. -volume- (Richmond, Va.png


Issac Goddard appears in the 1877 directory of Richmond, but Moses does not.

You can see here in 1891, Dec 23rd edition of the times... "Everything must go!!"
The times. -volume- (Richmond, Va.png

And by 1892, Harry Moses is by himself.
The times. -volume- (Richmond, Va~2.png

They ran a watch club, and I'll spare you the advertising, but for a dollar a week you could join and work towards the gold watch of your dreams. In 1888 they advertised that there are 500 happy gold watch owners from the watch club!

Issac Goddard born about 1826 in England, came to the United States about 1848, and apparently was a watchmaker his whole life. I can't find any other place of residence or profession. Cannot find a death record either.

Henry Moses is a ghost before "Goddard and Moses" if anything comes up, I will add it.


Anyways I've rambled enough. Here is the watch, it's a nice grade 82. 15 jewel.
Not a bad project, needed a ratchet wheel because the original was missing teeth. Couple wrong screws. I wish I could replace that balance cock screw, but it's quite large, I suppose the original hole became completely stripped. It's not that hard to do if your not careful.
IMG_20200330_212712847_HDR.jpg
Nice single sunk Roman dial signed for the jeweler. Few hairlines but they cleaned up pretty decently.
IMG_20200330_212323638.jpg

I had this Dueber special case around, and it's style is a bit newer than most of the thing I like to collect... So this movement being from the late 1880s, I figured it was probably as close as I'm going to get. They look good together in my opinion.
IMG_20200330_212835267.jpg


Thanks for reading my madness, have a good one and stay safe!
 

Rick Hufnagel

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30158. B.W. Raymond, model 1
Private label for Aug. Baumann, New Orleans, La
Screenshot_20200404-202623~2.png

August Baumann
Born December 17, 1836
Death April 16, 1923

Mr. Baumann came to America from Steinach, Baden, Germany in 1854. He lived in Baton Rouge as a watchmaker before moving to New Orleans. In 1862 he opened his own business by St. Mary's market. In 1864 he moved to 1018 Annunciation St, and then finally settled at 1825 Magazine St in 1896.

In 1919 his son, August Baumann Jr, took over running the business and in 1922 the name was changed from August Baumann to "The August Baumann Co". The Store was known for its diamonds at this time, as Jr. Was an expert and sold them to the trade.

Unfortunately August Jr died in 1928.

This information is paraphrased from the February 5, 1919 jewelers circular, death records, and a picture of the mosuleam where August Sr resides.

So why am I so excited about this movement? Well, first off I finally found my original BWR. Also, observations and research of serial lists suggest that there are only a handful of BWR private label movements with lower serial numbers. Also take into consideration that the BWR was not nearly the most common grade for a private label.

So... A CHALLENGE!!! Since im going stir crazy a little bit here, show me a private label Elgin with a lower serial number than mine! Doesn't have to be a BWR, any at all!

There are a couple scratches from someone trying to uncase it previously... It's a shame.. few spots on the Gilt... But it's decent.
IMG_20200404_195855418.jpg
The dial has a few small hairlines, but it really cleaned up nicely. It certainly matches the era. The hands were mismatched and replaced so I found a matching hour hand. That case is a faux stemwind case by Fahys. No provision for a stem. Clearly not original, but it functions correctly and makes a good movement holder. It doesn't say Fahys, but it has the No1 Trademark.

IMG_20200403_183631355.jpg


Have a good day! Thanks for reading!
 
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luvsthetick

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So... A CHALLENGE!!! Since im going stir crazy a little bit here, show me a private label Elgin with a lower serial number than mine! Doesn't have to be a BWR, any at all!
Rick,

Can't show you one since I don't own one but there is a lower serial # listed in post #237 of this thread.

Also one in post #196.
 
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Rick Hufnagel

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in post #237

Yes... Yes there is. Good old London watch co. The subject of many nights researching old papers. Those notes in post 237 line up with research.

There's one other observation over the past year have been helpful is trying to nail this down, along with tons help from friends, of course.

I'm not saying mine is the lowest, but it's close! Im just hoping to see some surviving examples!
 
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Fred Hansen

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Congrats Rick, great watch! New Orleans private labels of any kind aren’t real plentiful and this one among Elgin’s very early end is especially cool.
 
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Bostonjoe

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Hi All,

Got a fairly early one, SN#115999. 15 Jewel, Grade 62 KWKS movement. Has I. Hewitt on the dial. The movement has I. Hewitt, Cedar Rapids, Mich. Did some research, and learned that Isaac Hewitt was born in 1839 and died in 1921. He ran a store, flour mill, saw mill, and lumber business. He actually minted some trading tokens during the Civil War that are quite valuable. He became the Treasurer of the Lansing & Northwestern RR, and followed that up by becoming Vice President of the Lansing, St. Johns & St. Louis Electric Railway. A distinguished looking fella, his old pocket watch still keeping good time.

0d8271ea9510d3d746a1084823892b0b.jpg 1d5d1e5eb474e10999eba9efce2db4c8.jpg f057288e5bfebb109c9c8eeeadbed0ff.jpg
 

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musicguy

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Nice Dave!


Rob
 

diveboy

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Hi All,

Got a fairly early one, SN#115999. 15 Jewel, Grade 62 KWKS movement. Has I. Hewitt on the dial. The movement has I. Hewitt, Cedar Rapids, Mich. Did some research, and learned that Isaac Hewitt was born in 1839 and died in 1921. He ran a store, flour mill, saw mill, and lumber business. He actually minted some trading tokens during the Civil War that are quite valuable. He became the Treasurer of the Lansing & Northwestern RR, and followed that up by becoming Vice President of the Lansing, St. Johns & St. Louis Electric Railway. A distinguished looking fella, his old pocket watch still keeping good time.

View attachment 588382 View attachment 588383 View attachment 588384
This is actually a grade HZ Culver, not a grade 62.
 
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Rick Hufnagel

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916501
Grade 65
13 jewels
8 size (it is actually 8 size, not cut down to 6)


Samuel W. Fellows
Lawrence, Mass
Picked it up for the movement collection. This is the first 8s Elgin private label I've personally seen and recorded... So it was neat to be able to grab it.

IMG_20200718_133802473~2.jpg
IMG_20200718_133824399~2.jpg
 

Rick Hufnagel

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Around 1896 Elgin rolled out the "New thin model" 16 size movements. The models 6 & 7 as they became called, are hunting and openfaced, 3/4 plate or the three finger bridge plates.

Along with many watch companies of the time, Elgin started jeweling the center wheels and adding cap jewels to raise their jewel counts. Prior to this there are not many options (the highly jeweled convertibles) beyond 15 jewels. The models 3 and 5, which are my favorite, top out at 15 and adjusted with the 107, 108, 3 and 4.

Anyways these new thin model 6 and 7 take the standard size case most people are used to seeing, instead of the old model Elgin cases which were slightly bigger for models 1-5.

The introduction of these two models saw a full lineup of options, from the lowly Gilt 7 jewel (151 & 157) , to the absolutely gorgeous 21 jewel movements(156 & 162). look at Dave's above in post #291 for some eye candy.

Being that I collect things that I think are cool, not necessarily high grade, this one falls in the middle quality wise. It is 17 jewels and adjusted. Gold center wheel and nice damaskeen. Moseley regulator. It also has a very nice glass enamel dial. I just love these simple glass enamel dials with the Roman numerals and ring track!

You can see a description of the original model 6 and 7 lineup in this catalog. Courtesy of Google books and Kent's hard work.
https://mb.nawcc.org/attachments/1897_l-f_pg_357_elgin_mvt_descriptions_-_prices-jpg.470524/

7231806
Model 6, grade 153
Movement and dial signed for "C.P. Barnes & Co. Louisville KY"
IMG_20200817_183853733_HDR~2.jpg
IMG_20200817_183407584.jpg

Chauncey P Barnes born Sept 15, 1828, died Feb 4, 1895.

1864 is the earliest I can find C.P. listed as Manufacturing, wholesale and retail gold and watches. An advertisement from after the turn of the century states that it was established in 1858. Another advertisement boasts that it is the oldest mail order business in the south! (Both shown below). The last advertisement shows their eagerness to melt all those fine gold and silver cases down! (Yes way before our current high gold prices)

1893 & 94 Louisville directory still lists the company as C.P. Barnes and Bro. The bro refers to Judson B. Barnes. Located at 504 west market street.

So with these advertisements, directories and the watch in hand, the company seems to have lost "& bro" when Chauncey died in 1895 or shortly after.

Some advertisements from C.P. Barnes & Co. The library of Congress newspaper archive is an invaluable tool!

The Mt. Sterling advocate. (Mt. Sterling, Ky.) 1890-current, March 10, 1909, Image 4
Screenshot_20200817-200300~2.png

The Hartford herald. [volume] (Hartford, Ky.) 1875-1926, May 03, 1905, [Unlabeled Section 2], Image 4
Screenshot_20200817-200434~2.png

The Central Presbyterian. [volume] (Richmond, Va.) 1856-1908, June 06, 1906, Page 367, Image 15
Screenshot_20200817-200800~2.png

The Hartford herald. [volume] (Hartford, Ky.) 1875-1926, May 11, 1898, Image 4
Screenshot_20200817-201053~2.png

You can see a couple of my C.P. Barnes &Bro Hampdens in the Dueber Hampden private label thread. This one is one of my favorites

Dueber-Hampden Private Label Watches

I'll also repost this nice postcard I found a while back, showing the storefront of C.P. Barnes & Co. It fits this post better than the Hampden post.
IMG_20200102_192013072.jpg
IMG_20200102_192031455.jpg

Well if you made it through that, thanks for reading my madness and have a great day!
 

Lee Passarella

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I've wanted this one for a while, and when my wife said go for it, I did without hesitation. Lots of family connections to the railroad--residents of Altoona, my dad, grandad, and uncles and probably other, less immediate, family members worked for the PA RR. My wife's reaction boiled down to the fact that it isn't aesthetically pleasing. . . . No argument there.

IMG_0886.JPG IMG_0887.JPG
 

musicguy

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Hey Lee I just wanted to share with you this similar watch from the National Museum of American History.
Elgin PENNSYLVANIA RAILROAD CO. Watch The date on their watch is circa 1870-1871 very close
to yours. Only difference is that your dial is double sunk.



Rob
 
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Lee Passarella

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Hey Lee I just wanted to share with you this similar watch from the National Museum of American History.
Elgin PENNSYLVANIA RAILROAD CO. Watch The date on their watch is circa 1870-1871 very close
to yours. Only difference is that your dial is double sunk.
Thanks for sharing that, Rob. Very neat. I was wondering about the double-sunk dial. I haven't seen too many (maybe not any) on my key-winds from the 60s and 70s.
 

musicguy

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Rick Hufnagel

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115766
B.W. Raymond, model 1
Movement and dial signed for the Benedict Brothers.

IMG_20201022_164424969_HDR~2.jpg

This is pretty early for an Elgin with a double sunk dial and patent regulator, which makes it interesting to me. Coupled with the matching p.l. dial just made this too difficult to pass up. It does have some hairlines and the normal circle crack around the perimeter of the sunken center, but thats perfectly fine with me.


IMG_20201022_164456353_HDR~2.jpg

The Benedict Brothers of 171 Broadway, New York advertised as "The keepers of the city time". The advertisements I've found pre-1870 all boast their agency with the American Watch Co, but obviously they sold more than just Walthams.

This is from The Dallas Herald, Dec 19 1868. Courtesy of the Library of Congress.
Screenshot_20201022-185642.png

The company was founded in 1819 by Samuel Benedict. It lasted untill 1938.

By the 1870s his sons, Ovington and Read are involved in the business. (Ovington is their mother's maiden name).

A.c Benedict on Bowery is not part of the business, but a competitor who is a distant relative, both Samuel and A.C. are related to the same man (Thomas Benedict) that came from England in the late 1620s. Watches are also around marked for A.C. Benedict.

Anyways, they advertised that watches had been made special for them with their name... So with that in mind you will see multiple American companies with Benedict Brothers on the watch.

When I searched the forum, it appears that Dave C has quite a collection of great Benedict Bros watches. So check that out in the Illinois Private label forum. (and the NYWCo p.l. thread)
 
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Dave Chaplain

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When I searched the forum, it appears that Dave C has quite a collection of great Benedict Bros watches. So check that out in the Illinois Private label forum. (and the NYWCo p.l. thread)
I'm also a Dave C., but I know you're referring to our moderator, Dave Coatsworth! My earliest examples of pat regs with double sunk dials are Stuart models in the 61,xxx number range. And the next one I have is a grade 101 private label in the 215,xxx range. But the problem is that we can't be certain that these examples were not upgraded at some point after they were sold, or sold later after upgrading - either by Illinois itself, or by a watchmaker for an owner, or even by the owner of the watch as far as the upgrade goes! For example, after much analysis by a group of experts here, one of the 61,xxx range watches that I have was expertly upgraded at a later date - and the consensus here was that the work was done by Illinois (and then the 61,xxx on that one was repunched as 64,xxx!). Here's a list of what was done to that one exampe, presumably by Illinois due to the expert nature of the modifications:
- Hairspring style change from flat overcoil studded on the main plate to Breguet studded on the balance cock.
- Creation of new balance cock and barrel bridge
- Upjeweled from 15 to 17.
- Elimination of keywinding barrel arbor.
- Addition of "Adjusted" marking to main plate.
- Plugging of the holes on the main plate for the original hairspring stud arm
- Regilding of main plate

But they're all beautiful to me, including your early numbered example! :)
 
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Waltham Watches by Clint Geller