Lancaster Watch Company Watches

Discussion in 'American Pocket Watches' started by mldenison, Sep 12, 2018.

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  1. mldenison

    mldenison Registered User
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    I believe the Lancaster Watch Company was in business a short time, changed hands several times and became the Hamilton Watch Company.

    I like their late 1890's logo (pictured below). Father Time is astride a Lancaster watch and appears to be a 1269 movement.

    Does anyone know if there was a 1269 movement?

    I've been following eBay for a while for a Lancaster watch and have never seen one in any model. I'd love to find an example in great shape.

    Trade Card Small.jpg
     
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  2. kevin h

    kevin h Registered User

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    Well here you go ! here is a 18s keywind , serial 80245 new era , in a hinged pair case that is a little big for it

    20180912_180832.jpg 20180912_180911.jpg 20180912_180947.jpg
     
  3. kevin h

    kevin h Registered User

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    The lancaster collectors don't get the same limelight as a 992 or 940 hamilton ! they did make some sweet 20j nickel plated models that do get the attention of collectors, and their later models produced under the keystone name , I have often wondered how many keystone produced, is this the info you are after ? my mistake , you wanted to know if there was a 1269 model , that looks like a serial to me , (forgive me , I live close to the water , and the hurricane has my interest )

    DSC01507-001.jpg DSC01503.jpg
     
  4. mldenison

    mldenison Registered User
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    Thanks, Kevin. There are some out there. It looks like 15j was the highest jewel count they made - Elberon, Melrose and West End. There appears to have been a #1136 but no record of a #1269, circa 1874. Bummer.

    The search is on...
     
  5. Tom McIntyre

    Tom McIntyre Technical Admin
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    Just for clarity, 1269 is not a model, it is the serial number of that 20J nickel Adams & Perry watch which may or may not have been made when the company was called the Lancaster Watch Co. It is possible that the artist was taking liberties with the color and the watch is actually a gilt example.

    There are a couple of great threads here about the early days of watchmaking in Lancaster before the Aurora watch company was moved there and named Hamilton. :) The buildings had belonged to the Keystone Watch Co. just before that happened.
     
  6. mldenison

    mldenison Registered User
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    Thanks, Tom. I should have mentioned it was the serial number. Is the 20j Adams & Perry owned by someone, or just documented?

    Sweet looking watch, Kevin.
     
  7. Jim Haney

    Jim Haney Registered User
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    This is an old thread I copied and it will give most of the info on the chain of progression from the original Adams & Perry roots to the Hamilton Watch Co.

    These watches all fall under the umbrella of
    Adams & Perry, Lancaster, Penna, Keystone and finally Hamilton.

    George Meyers,( Known here as gmeyer4) who posts here in the Lancaster Watch Co. Threads and did a restoration on #34 A&P in The Bulletin.
    He had some staffs made for these old watches in China and are good replacements(may need tweaked a little) I have used them. Send him a Private message.



    Adams & Perry serial numbers

    Lancaster PA Watch Examples


    Important Research on Adam & Perry
    Adams & Perry serial numbers


    Most educational thread on the history of the base companies. Burt Cifrulak & George Meyers wrote the introduction in the Price Guide for A &P and Keystone based on their research in this thread.

    Adams & Perry serial numbers
     
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  8. kevin h

    kevin h Registered User

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    Have you looked at the "images" section on the Pocket watch database , nice watches but only 2 pages
     
  9. mldenison

    mldenison Registered User
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    Lots of good reading, Jim & thanks.

    The pocket watch database is a bit light on the Lancaster watches. Hopefully, I can eventually add one to it!
     
  10. Keith R...

    Keith R... Registered User
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    Key wind or lever set.............?

    Their 15 Jewels are of good quality. I'll keep an eye out and pass on what I run across.


    Keith R...

    103_9438 (800x600) (2).jpg 103_9446 (800x600) (2).jpg 103_9442 (800x600) (2).jpg
     
  11. Jim Haney

    Jim Haney Registered User
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  12. mldenison

    mldenison Registered User
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    More good info, Jim.

    Kevin, I'm leaning toward a Lancaster Dust Proof Keystone model. I have no idea if it would be lever or key set and even if it was offered with a choice. I'd prefer an open face and, again, I don't know if it was made as an open face. A porcelain double sunk dial marked Lancaster would be perfect. With a gold filled case. Not asking for much, am I? It would be carried occasionally.
     
  13. Tom McIntyre

    Tom McIntyre Technical Admin
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    You should be aware that the only double sunk porcelain dial I have seen of a Keystone dustproof was a 20 jewel example with matching keystone hands (hour, minute and second).

    Since i sold off all my interesting Hamilton and Lancaster watches, I no longer own this one.

    Keystone20Jmvt2.jpg Keystone20Jface.jpg
     
  14. mldenison

    mldenison Registered User
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    Well, scratch the double sunk dial off my list. The higher jewel counts are substantially above my pay grade! That was a pretty watch, Tom. I'm looking for a Lancaster Watch Company watch, Keystone grade.
     
  15. Tom McIntyre

    Tom McIntyre Technical Admin
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    Just for clarity, I do not think there are any Lancaster dustproof watches. Those were introduced after the company became Keystone. However, since I am getting a bit stale on these, that could be wrong and the company might have actually been called Lancaster when it began the Keystone marked watches. The threads Jim posted links to above go into the history in quite a bit of etail and it is important to read those published articles as well.

    Although the Hamilton company actually came from Aurora, the local history in Lancaster of these previous companies did a lot to shape it.
     
  16. gmeyer4

    gmeyer4 Registered User
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    Additional Info! I have examples of dustproofs marked both ways, Lancaster PA and Keystone Watch Co just over the 100,000 serial number. The ones marked Lancaster PA are labeled Elberon and Denver and are 11 jewels (I think) while the Keystone is plain and 7 jewel. Tom's right, these likely were designed at about the time of the transition from Lancaster to Keystone. Bitner got a patent for the dustproof design in 1883, #273938. The patent was filed in November of 1882. The patent is assigned to Bitner with no mention of the company which was common during that time. Bitner went on to get paid a royalty for each watch sold using his patent.

     
  17. mldenison

    mldenison Registered User
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    #18 mldenison, Sep 14, 2018 at 12:39 PM
    Last edited: Sep 14, 2018 at 1:11 PM
    The Lancaster Watch Company's history is certainly convoluted as to their products and evolvement.

    The 2018 " Complete Price Guide to Watches" is where I found reference to the Lancaster Watch Company, Keystone model: 18s, 3/4 plate, 15j, adjustable, gilded, gold jewel settings, dust proof. I've not been able to find a picture of said watch.

    While searching for what a dust proof watch was (thanks gmeyer4), I noticed in a few places where it was described as an acrylic window/cover. While acrylic plastic dates from the 1930's, I'm pretty sure it was mica that was used.
     
  18. Tom McIntyre

    Tom McIntyre Technical Admin
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    We strive mightily to repair ignorance. :)

    Indeed, the windows are mica and some watches listed in the price guide are fantasies. However, I have owned the one described

    key15D.jpg key15mvte.jpg
     

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