Rare 16 size 23j Hampden

Discussion in 'American Pocket Watches' started by rschussel, Oct 13, 2019.

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  1. rschussel

    rschussel Registered User
    NAWCC Member

    Mar 1, 2002
    #1 rschussel, Oct 13, 2019
    Last edited: Oct 13, 2019
    I recently acquired the second rarest 16 size 23j Hampden Railroad watch (Grade 94 Model 5 Hunter) N=100 on EBay.

    Only the 23j Grade 103 (Free Sprung Hunter –1st 16 size 23j Railroad watch made in America in 1891 ) appears to have a lower production.
    model 94 mvt  3129496.jpg model 94 comarision to 23j grade 104  RRG.jpg model 94 Comparision 23j Special Railway movement I.jpg model 94 face 496.jpg

    model 94 Hunter mvt 3129496.jpg
    Grade Jewels Production First serial #

    95 21j N= 500 3,111,501
    94 23 100 3,129,401
    9717 1,000 3,156,001

    The Grade 94 is somewhat of a mystery. It was the first 23j 16 size Model 5 lever set Hampden Railroad watch to appear. But what is strange is that Hampden released it in 1915, a time when the popularity of Hunters were waning and many railroads were requiring Open Face watches. Around the same time Hampden produced the 16 size 21j grade 95 lever set Hunter and the 17j Grade 97 Pendant set Hunter.
    To date only 5 serial numbers for the Grade 94 have been reported. Bob Arnold Author of the Hampden Watch Company reported 2 serial numbers ,The Pocketwatchdatabase.Com reported an additional two and the one I just acquired makes a total of 5.

    Below are the reported Grade 94 serial numbers

    Serial # reported


    Several years later Hampden produce a 16 size 23j Open Face lever set Model 5 Grade 104 from 1917 to 1920. While not identical the damenskeening of the Grade 104 is similar to the Grade 94. Was the Model 5 Grade 104 meant to be the Open Face version of the Grade 94?

    If anyone has additional Grade 94 serial numbers or any other information about Grade 94 would you please let me know.
  2. musicguy

    musicguy Moderator
    NAWCC Member Sponsor

    Jan 12, 2017
    New York State
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    Very nice!

  3. John Cote

    John Cote Director
    Director NAWCC Member

    Aug 26, 2000
    Midwest USA
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    Love it when one of these really scarce grades shows up, especially in such nice shape. Congrats and thanks for the pictures.
  4. Marty101

    Marty101 Registered User
    NAWCC Member

    Oct 28, 2007
    Retired-bad back but still movin'.
    Niagara Falls,N.Y.
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    Great find-thanks for sharing this.

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