I saw the following Ebay listing, now ended, a few days ago: ANTIQUE 18K GOLD APPLETON TRACY WALTHAM CIVIL WAR POCKET WATCH RARE #281732476670 It was listed by a guy with zero prior feedbacks, and contained only three pictures, all of the case. However, the lot description promised an 18K Robbins & Appleton case, and aside from some wear on the bow, the case appeared to be in great shape with nearly all the engine turning still on it. So I contacted the "seller," asking for the movement serial number and some more pictures. He responded, and told me the watch was a "fully jeweled" twenty size with S# 50,141! That S# didn't immediately ring any bells, although it should have. About two days later, the promised pictures arrived, via my direct e-mail address, along with the message below: My Appleton Tracy Waltham Civil War Pocket Watch is not on ebay anymore, but it's still available for sale. My usual schedule has been changed and I had to go to Spain to take care of some business and that's why I've ended my auction. The final price for the watch is US $ 1,500.00 including all the shipping costs and insurance. Also I want to let you know that you will have the opportunity to receive and inspect the watch before you actually pay for it. If you are interested and want to know more details regarding the purchase just contact me. Thanks and sorry for delay, Marshall $1,500 is way less than the scrap gold value of the case, and the crook figured I would know that. The pictures told the story. The dust cover carries an unique Civil War presentation to a "Pay Master Major Ladd." That exact watch sold on Ebay a few years ago for over $10,000. I remember it well, as I was the back bidder. (The winning bidder had more information about the provenance than I did, and so was willing to go higher.) It was subsequently featured in an NAWCC BULLETIN article, as it may have been present beside Abraham Lincoln's deathbed. I told this fine gentleman exactly what he could do with his watch, as anatomically challenging as that advice might have been. The "I'm in Spain" part of the thief's message was his excuse for not being able to speak on the phone. This is a common motif among Ebay thieves. The only baffling part is his claim that I would be able to inspect the watch before paying for it. This makes it plausible that he actually has the watch, and that it is stolen, but I doubt it. My other theory concerns the images he sent me. When I opened them, the suffix "_cleaned" had been attached to the file names, which raises the suspicion that this scam was just an elaborate ruse to get some malware onto my computer.