Hello everyone. New to the hobby and still learning. Is this a legit Johnson? Very rough and unrepaired. It belonged to my grandfather. Ideas on the date of manufacture. Also, any recommendations on repair in the southeast US near Charlotte, NC? Thanks
Gadams, Sorry that our expert on Joseph Johnson has not replied yet, it could be he is on holiday. His name is Oliver Mundy, I think he would say your watch is an original Joseph Johnson. If you search the forums for threads on Johnson, you will find it is most interesting and worth reading. I am sure Oliver will contact you soon. So welcome to the thread, and I wish you well.
PS: Your case was made in America, do you know if it's Gold or not?
I am not sure whether Oliver (Lychnobius ) will view it unreservedly as genuine. The serial number #9741 falls in a range where many of the examples Oliver regards as of uncertain origin. The oil sinks around the banking pins is a feature that raises concern for me, as does the overall quality of the engraving.
Having said that, I believe that Johnson used a variety of outworkers to work on his watches. I am not sure whether that was the case for the finishing work. If he did then it is possible that that might account for some features observed on the watches that are of 'uncertain origin'. I believe the over-riding assumption has been that Johnson would have not knowingly allowed his signature to be added to watches unless they were up to a minimum standard, but at what level(s) that was, I cannot say.
I, too, have some doubts about the attribution to Joseph Johnson. The engraving and ornamentation does not look like typical Liverpool work to me. Here is my movement #9250 which I believe is closer to what is expected.
John Matthews has covered most of the relevant points. In addition, the cock-screw in gadams's movement has a head which projects above the cock-foot instead of being countersunk into it as in Jerry Treiman's example; this thicker kind of screw-head is not usually found until the 1850s, and the dial with its sunken seconds panel also suggests that period. The real 9741 would have dated from the late 1820s.
I have to admit that it is fairly unusual to find the '25 Church Street' address on a fake. However, I do know of four other examples.