Let's see your earliest Hampdens

Jim Haney

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There was a large carry over from the New York Watch Co. Springfield, Mass, so when Hampden started producing watches there was a mix of the old and the new.

Greg Frauenhoff had a nice list at one time on AOL, but it was lost in the changeover.

The reference in the Price Guide of 59,000 as a start is not correct.

This is a Rail-Way Number 57879. They later changed this to Railway and had some Lawsuits about the name so Hamilton went with Railway Special to stay out of court'

DSCN8630.JPG DSCN8631.JPG DSCN8629.JPG
 

Kent

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This is a Rail-Way Number 57879. They later changed this to Railway and had some Lawsuits about the name so Hamilton went with Railway Special to stay out of court'
Jim:

Good thread, I'm glad that you started it.

By the time that Hamilton came out with the Railway Special name (on the 992B in 1940), Hampden had long since passed from the scene (having been sold to Russia in 1930).

1900_Aug_1_Railway_Trade_Mark_LR.jpg 1901_Jan_Hampden_Watch_Co_Wins.jpg
 

musicguy

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My oldest Hampden I've owned (and currently it's my only one left) is from 1890
It's much newer than yours Jim. But you did ask to see our earliest Hampden.

IMG_3614 (2).jpg Untitled.png



Rob
 

Rick Hufnagel

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45031 auctions over so I can talk about it haha.

Chester Woolworth marked ,. Hampden dial though. Short cock.... I added it to my notes. Thought it was really early to have a Hampden dial but maybe it coincides with what your talking about jim.

Thanks for sharing your watches!
And your knowledge!
 
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Rick Hufnagel

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Another interesting one I have noted,

50156 . Marked just Woolworth with Hampden dial

54229. Menlo Park. Gilt 15 j. Balance cut out .ch Knight and co dial

41365. Movement marked hampden . 11 jewel . Nickel.

47132 . Marked Woolworth. Gilt . Hampden dial
 
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Rick Hufnagel

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Jim, although I've only been collecting notes on these for a little over a month... It became pretty obvious, pretty quick, that the 59,000 mark in the book is incorrect. I actually was going off of 60,000 before I started, but it makes no difference. There's quite a mix out there of obvious new yorks with new York dials, obvious hampdens with Hampden dials, and then there's the cross breeds. I wrote down maybe 20 or so that I've found so far, between 40 and 60,000. The Hampden ones I felt were strangely too low a serial number I posted above.

In your opinion, as ann example could a movement marked Chester Woolworth, with a Hampden dial be an original pairing? Or the opposite.... A movent marked just Woolworth with a new York dial?

Is there a way to tell late new York from early Hampden, or is it so random that it's just a grey area?

Obviously dial swapping or barrel bridge swapping could be a factor in trying to document these, but with anything there's always going to be such variables.

Thanks for any opinions and advice.
 

Keith R...

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Rick, as far as Hamden's and the New York split, one point to look for is long cock
and short cock. I first recall a serial number around 44,000 with a short cock New
York. Jim H. and others would be the collectors for all other Hamden models on
key winds or lever sets.

Keith R...
 

Rick Hufnagel

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Thanks Keith! That 41365 I noted above is a short cock, nickel, 11 jewel movement that only says Hampden, Springfield I'll. I assume that is a Hampden grade, new York movement. I mistakenly added it.

Jim says he has an earlier Hampden than his 44160 above, so we're looking at somewhere round about 13,000 serial numbers that could be either company?
Even weeding out obvious examples if at all possible, that's still a very large grey area. Or am I completely off base?
 
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johnbscott

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This is Hampden Model 2 Railway movement 75592 (hunting case), which I bought, long ago, in a dismantled state (saved by Roy Ehrhardt, no less). Some parts were missing, some broken. This one has the hollow centre wheel arbor. The stem winding mechanism has a marked patent date of May 28, 1878 and I think the watch was made very soon after that.

These watches are pure New England and they date from a time well before the involvement of Dueber. The factory superintendent, at the time, was none other than Henry J Cain, the eventual designer of the Hamilton 18s and 16s watch movements.

Hamp 18s 75592 movt 1 R.jpeg Hamp 18s 75592 dial R.jpeg Hamp 18s 75592 movt 2 R.jpeg Hamp 18s 75592 movt 3 R.jpeg Hamp 18s 75592 movt 4 R.jpeg
 

johnbscott

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Both 69105 and 75592 have proved to be exceptionally accurate watches. In practice, they keep time within a second a day. Probably they were worth the high money that was charged. Certainly, they are remarkable for their time.
 

luvsthetick

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That 41365 I noted above is a short cock, nickel, 11 jewel movement that only says Hampden, Springfield I'll. I assume that is a Hampden grade, new York movement. I mistakenly added it.
Hope you do not mind Richard, you need to correct your notes. #41365 is a true Hampden with Hampden Watch Co. on the top plate and is not a Hampden grade N.Y. movement. A picture of #41365 can be seen here (https://pocketwatchdatabase.com/profile/Cincinnatus/collection/view/56640)
 

Jim Haney

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This is my earliest number 42164, a complete watch with Hampden dial.

DSCN8620.JPG DSCN8619.JPG DSCN8621.JPG DSCN8622.JPG


Sorry for the tint in the Pic's, it has bright shiny Nickel plates with the 4 line ribbon pattern, Blue Plate and trim screws and a copper or brass colored regulator scale and runs fine. In a 4 OZ Blauer Case
 
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Tom McIntyre

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This watch is a Hampden Springfield product which fits better into the theme of this thread. When we were writing the Watch & Clock Bulletin articles about the Illinois Grade 105 and friends I got to looking at watches that were not familiar to me if they had a particular set of characteristics of finish and jewel settings, etc. This is a Hampden Grade 60 which I think must be about the best of the early full plate models.

Back.jpg CaseMark.jpg Dial.jpg Front.jpg Movement.jpg Mvt2.jpg
 

LloydB

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This is my earliest number 42164, a complete watch
with Hampden dial.
[snipped]

Jim, your (42164) is the lowest SN I've seen
on a KW/KS Hampden Watch Co *marked*
movement, having that later style of click.

That one feature 'could' provide an estimate of
the elusive SN transition point, from NYWCO
to Hampden Watch Co.

Of course, there's an abundance of much later
Hampden KW's fitted with the earlier click, but
does anyone have a *Hampden Watch Co* KW
movement with this later click and a SN lower
than your 42164?

And... is there a patent (patent date) for the later
click style? Or was it too modest a change for that?
 
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Kent

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This is a Hampden Grade 60 which I think must be about the best of the early full plate models.
The Hampden grade No. 60 was the open-face version of the Railway grade (which wasn't made in open-face until the move to Canton, OH). As such, it shared the top of Hampen's line with the Railway grade. Note that the 1887 catalog page (below) shows the identically described Railway and No. 60 movements are priced a $67.00. This was significantly more expensive (about 50% more) than the next highest grades; the Perry and No. 50 grade movements (at $45.00).

Note that Tucker regulators were applied on Hampden watches for a time.

1888_May_Railway_&_No_60.jpg 1887_s_f_myers.jpg
 
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luvsthetick

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[snipped]



Of course, there's an abundance of much later
Hampden KW's fitted with the earlier click, but
does anyone have a *Hampden Watch Co* KW
movement with this later click and a SN lower
than your 42164?
#41365 has the later style.
Follow the link in post #19 to see serial #41365 with the later click.
 

Tom Huber

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Take note in the ad posted by Kent that all watches are fitted with “Tucker’s regulators” not “teske regulators”.

Tom
 

LloydB

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Hope you do not mind Richard, you need to correct your notes.
#41365 is a true Hampden with Hampden Watch Co. on the top
plate and is not a Hampden grade N.Y. movement.
A picture of #41365 can be seen here (
https://pocketwatchdatabase.com/profile/Cincinnatus/collection/view/56640)
Thanks, indeed, for that 'referral'...
So we are down to SN 41365
on a private label (dial only) from
Nebraska. How low can we go,
with a *marked* Hampden Watch Co.
KW movement, with that later click?

BTW, there's an error in the (above)
listing; it incorrectly describes the
movement markings:
*******************************
.......Movement Markings
...... Hamilton Watch Co.
.......Springfield, Mass
 

Lee Passarella

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I picked up this Hampden serial 296984 , and was surprised at the accuracy , I am not sure of the grade ( maybe # 30 ) It is next to a Bunn and a 21j Rockford and is spot on . It is housed in a Fahys coin silver with little wear.
Interesting. The face is an exact match for my Serial #311851 (Post #9), but mine is stem wound. The Pocket Watch Database lists yours as 1883 and mine as 1884. Mine keeps great time too.
 
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Greg Frauenhoff

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Hampden Menlo park. 11J. serial 99993. KW/KS. Not super early but an interesting watch in the early part of the company.

These private labels were sold to CH Knight of Chicago. Unique feature for I believe just this client was the Cut-out balance. Gilt with wavy demasked lines. Gold timing screws.

View attachment 519135 View attachment 519136
Very neat watch.

BTW, the cut-out balance bridge appears on other private labels besides the Menlo Park.
 

OldSchool1959

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Thanks for the great pictures guys. These Hampdens look good. I wonder why they usually dont bring the same auction prices as do the Hamiltons and Illinois do. Is there a reason? I see this not only on ebay but also on the other online auction houses. I think they have great looking movements personally
 

Greg Frauenhoff

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I wonder why they usually dont bring the same auction prices as do the Hamiltons and Illinois do. Is there a reason? I see this not only on ebay but also on the other online auction houses. I think they have great looking movements personally
More people collect Hamilton and Illinois.

There are many makes that made some terrific watches in quantities way less than Hamilton, Illinois and Hampden that can be had for a relative song.
 
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Jim Haney

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Thank you for all of the examples show so far, We have it narrowed down to somewhere in the 40,000- 41,000 range. We have a N.Y. W. Co., Keith's example 41509 so this is the cut off some where between these numbers ?

True Hampden's Numbers
41365
42164
44160
All are legit watches, by that I mean they have Hampden Watch Co. on the plates and are not not made up N.Y.W.Co. parts to finish up old inventory. I have seen some of these over the years so they do exist.

As a side to this thread Lloyd has narrowed down the New Style Hampden KW click to the earliest number we have found,41365.;)
 
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Greg Frauenhoff

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So far this thread has focused only on the full plate mvts. Besides inheriting a bunch of such in various states of completion, Hampden also had a bunch of 3/4 plate stuff to deal with. The earliest ad for Hampden that I've seen shows several 3/4 plate grades being marketed by Hampden.
 

Kent

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... These Hampdens look good. I wonder why they usually dont bring the same auction prices as do the Hamiltons and Illinois do. Is there a reason? ...
I think that many collectors view Hampden as a second tier supplier.

I know that this is rather subjective, but compared to Hamilton and Illinois watches, the Hampden watches don't seem to be finished as nicely. The movement lettering seems to be 'fuzzy' on many examples; as though the tools used to stamp or engrave them were worn, but used anyway. Those grades having a gold-on-nickel damaskeened finish (which Ed and I refer to as tu-tone - a term not used by the industry, nor by many collectors) seen to suffer from the gold washing out more than the Hamilton and Illinois products. Also, the dials seem to suffer more damage than Hamilton and Illinois dials.

Having said (well ... written) all that, I've got quite a few Hampden railroad watches in my collection and I kinda like them.
 

Tom McIntyre

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Maybe we could start another thread on 'Hampden Stars." I particularly like the Hampden 104 and I have been looking to find a free sprung 103 for a long time with no success.
 

LloydB

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Thank you for all of the examples show so far, We have it narrowed down to somewhere in the 40,000- 41,000 range. We have a N.Y. W. Co., Keith's example 41509 so this is the cut off some where between these numbers ?

True Hampden's Numbers
41365
42164
44160
All are legit watches, by that I mean they have Hampden Watch Co. on the plates and are not not made up N.Y.W.Co. parts to finish up old inventory. I have seen some of these over the years so they do exist.

As a side to this thread Lloyd has narrowed down the New Style Hampden KW click to the earliest number we have found,41365.;)
Just spotted: what I think is movement SN 37132, (a Hampden 'Lafayette')
with the later click. If so, that's the lowest SN so far.
 
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LloydB

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Lloyd, You have to show a picture or link to prove this.
It just doesn't sound likely
Sure would like to, Jim... there was only a rather poor image,
and it's a currently 'on offer' item. I'll follow up when I can.

The first SN digit appeared to be '3', but it just might be a '5'.
 

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