Registered User
Mar 1, 2002
Although only about 3,000 12 size Aristons were manufactured, major discoveries are still occurring. The first Ariston 12 size grade 273 17j hunter has been found.

Ariston’s was the private label pocket watch brand made by the Illinois Watch co. for Marshall Fields & Co. Chicago—the Tiffany’s of Chicago. Of all of the 12 size Ariston’s produced approximately 10% were hunters.

About 30,780 Grade 273s were produced with 9,525 being Hunters. Most grade 273s( both open face and hunter) are 17j jewels.

Until now the only known Ariston 12 size Grade 273 Hunters were 19 jewels with an estimated production of 80. In total Illinois produced about 290 19 jewel Grade 273 Hunters.

12 size 17j Ariston Grade 273 Hunter

The newly discovered 12 size Ariston Hunter #2,250,931 was produced in a run of 100 Grade 273 seventeen (17) jewel Hunters in 1910. It appears that most of movements in this run were private label. In speaking to Jim Carroll creator of the A Guide to Illinois Watch Co. size 12 Watches he estimates that 50 of the watches in the run were produced as Aristons.

The watch came in a Wadsworth gold filled Permanent case which is not original. It originally would have been cased in an Ariston marked case. Twelve (12) size Ariston Hunter cases are very scarce—only about 250.The odds of finding a correct case is very low—that is why I was willing to purchase it with a case that appears to be appropriate to the time period .
ariston 17 j Hunter Grade 273 DIAL.jpg ariston 17 j Hunter Grade 273.mvt  1.jpg
Final thoughts
For some strange reason there has been questions about the existence of three (3) of the six twelve (12) size Ariston Hunters.

For many years Meggars and Ehrhardt questioned whether the 12 size Grade 299 23j Grade Ariston Hunter existed. Only in the last 30 years was one reported. I was fortunate enough to buy it (in an 18kt Ariston case) from a dealer. It was the first Grade 299 23j Ariston Hunter Ehrhardt had seen.

Meggars and Ehrhardt also questioned whether the 17 jewel Ariston grade 506 Hunters existed. The Illinois production factory list showed the 6th run (N=30) of grade 506 to be hunters –2,406,121 to 150. No other grade five hundred series (N=32,270) is listed as being hunters. For many years it was believed that the notation was in error. From the estate of Roy Ehrhardt (author Illinois Watch co.) I purchased a partially complete Ariston 506 Hunter movement (2,406,143) and more recently found an intact 273 Hunter with its original Ariston walnut box. If anyone owns a 506 Hunter would you please contact me.

In hindsight the existence of the Ariston 273 Hunter should have been suspected as the majority of 273 Hunters are 17 jewels. Every time I think I have all of the 12 size Ariston’s produced I get surprised.

Jim Carroll

NAWCC Member
Aug 27, 2002
Inverclyde Scotland
Robert I have an image of grade 506 hunter 2,046.128, although the watch is not in best condition I'll mail the image on to you.


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