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Illinois A.Lincoln

John Arrowood

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NAWCC Gold Member
Dec 14, 2001
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Where do the A.Lincoln watches appear on the quality line for Illinois? Here are three two appear to be regular 12-size and one that seems to be slightly wider and a bit thinner. The one on the left looks thinner and slightly wider than the other two. Serial number 4773505, 14k white gold with a cuvette, Keystone case.. Middle one is ygf and is a re-case. Serial number 4923985. Right one is in wgf case marked Illinois Watch Special Model 165, Fahys 14j white gold filled. Is the first one a different size, or a spread 12? Thanks alincoln.jpg
 

Ethan Lipsig

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Jan 8, 2006
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Illinois' A. Lincolns were good quality watches, near the top of the range, but not at the apex. Based on their serial numbers, all three of your watches, John, have Grade 527 12-size movements, described as follows on Page Title.

"Grade 527,
19 ruby and sapphire jewels adjusted to 5 positions, manufactured from 1922 to 1927 a total of 18,500 movements in 23 runs make up this grade.
Model 3XT open faced; 3/4 plate movements of high quality with Illinois superior motor barrel, double roller and patent regulator.

Observations,
The movements are bright lined pattern named A. Lincoln. Early models have burnished set jewels, this later changed to screw set jewels. Also a pallet cock was fitted to early models this changed to a pallet bridge. Silver snap on bezel dials of various designs were fitted and a variety of gold and gold filled named cases were advertised, Acorn; Oxford; Cambridge; Eton; Pioneer; Barrister; Trustee; and Dean made by Keystone; Fahys; Wadsworth and Solidarity. The watches were factory cased.

Description,
19 ruby and sapphire jewels of extra quality; adjusted to 5 positions, temperature and isochronism; beveled arm gold center wheel; Breguet hairspring;
patent regulator; concave and polished winding wheels; recoil safety click; hardened spring tempered compensating balance; and Illinois motor barrel"
 
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ben_hutcherson

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Jul 15, 2009
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Generally I'd consider them the 3rd or 4th for a given time frame.

For Getty model watches, they would be below the 189(don't remember offhand if they were concurrent with the 179) and Sangamo, and it could be argued below the 187. IMO, the 187 is finer finished than the A. Lincoln, but the jewel count on the 187 is higher. I seem to recall prices were generally similar on these two grades.

For later model 8/9 watches, the A. Lincoln was the step below the Bunn Special, and I think priced similarly to the Bunn. Again, the Bunn was better finished but the A. Lincoln a higher jewel count. This would have consequently put it behind the Sangamo Special and Diamond, Ruby and Sapphire.


Sorry, reading comprehension failure. I missed the 12 size part.
 

Steven Thornberry

User Administrator
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Jan 15, 2004
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Just FWIW, Illinois also made a 12S A. Lincoln grade (other than the 527), one of which I happen to have, SN 3148421. It has 21 jewels and is adjusted to 5 positions. Information on that grade is also available on Jim Carroll's website.

A. Lincoln Grade
 

grtnev

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Jan 18, 2009
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Minden, Nevada
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Generally I'd consider them the 3rd or 4th for a given time frame.

For Getty model watches, they would be below the 189(don't remember offhand if they were concurrent with the 179) and Sangamo, and it could be argued below the 187. IMO, the 187 is finer finished than the A. Lincoln, but the jewel count on the 187 is higher. I seem to recall prices were generally similar on these two grades.

For later model 8/9 watches, the A. Lincoln was the step below the Bunn Special, and I think priced similarly to the Bunn. Again, the Bunn was better finished but the A. Lincoln a higher jewel count. This would have consequently put it behind the Sangamo Special and Diamond, Ruby and Sapphire.


Sorry, reading comprehension failure. I missed the 12 size part.
Ben,

I think in general though I’d agree with your basic premise, whether 12 or 16s, the A Lincoln grade just doesn’t, IMHO, seem to be finished to as high a quality as one would have expected with a very simplistic linear damaskeen pattern.

Something I have always found interesting.

Being located in Springfield, IL; one would have thought that Illinois would have use an “A. Lincoln “ grade to represent the apex of their production - both in terns of time keeping ability and aesthetic quality - and for some inexplicable reason they didn’t.

Richard
 

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