Help finding descendant of gift watch

markg

NAWCC Member
Jan 10, 2006
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I realize this might not be the proper place for this type of question but I would like to share this beginning of a story. I am currently going through my uncle’s collection to prepare it for aunction and came upon a watch that I would like to return to a family member if possible. It was a gift watch to Charles D White on his 24th birthday in 1899 from his Mother. Through a Goolge search he later became the mayor of Atlantic City from 1935-1940. Would prefer to find a living descendant than sell it. Has anyone been successful at finding family members to return special watches to? I am going to do my best to complete the search but just wanted to know if anyone had accomplished something like this and what would be a good place to start?

Mark
 
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PatH

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In addition to Ethan's post, if you search for entries by Robert Stokes you will find threads about watches he has researched from inscription information. On his website, he includes write-ups on his findings about the owner from period newspapers, and about the watch from period advertising. Some descendants have wanted the watch, while others have not. Good luck with your search.
 

markg

NAWCC Member
Jan 10, 2006
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Thanks for all of your replies. I am going to keep the watch in my collection while I do my research. If I find a descendant I am also going to vet them before handing over the watch. It just struck something in me that it was given to him by his Mother that I thought I should try to find someone instead of just selling it at auction. It also gives me a fun project.

Mark
 

Ned L

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Feb 3, 2009
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I had a somewhat similar story. When my dad was in high school (1940) he was best friend's with someone. They both ended up going to the same college together & were freshman year roommates. The end of 1941 came along, and they both ended up in the service in 1942. The friend of my dad's was killed in service and his family gave my dad a small shadowbox containing his high school sports medals as a remembrance (both were excellent athletes). Flash forward to the early 1970's and my dad passed his medals, along with this shadowbox of medals on to me (and some history). About a year ago I thought I would try to track down the family of this friend of my dad's and return the medals to them. After a good bit of internet searching and tracking their family move from N.J to the deep south I finally located a nephew of this person. He told me his daughter was named after this friend of my dad's and she would be the one who would be interested, and the family will be in touch. Weeks went by, I contacted the family again and some more weeks passed. Finally, I heard from this "daughter", who thanked me for tracking her family and her down and for filling them in on some family history they were unaware of, however they weren't interested in having the shadowbox of medals. ……. Odd.
 
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