Rich Tompion

Discussion in 'European & Other Pocket Watches' started by alberta mike, Apr 21, 2017.

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  1. alberta mike

    alberta mike Registered User

    Mar 28, 2013
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    #1 alberta mike, Apr 21, 2017
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 21, 2017
    I posted a few years ago about Rich Tompion. I have one of his watches and some things do not add up (for me)
    The hallmark is 1817 Birmingham, Vale and company whose mark was registered 24 Jan 1816.
    Robert Burns died in 1796
    The watch papers indicate that it was serviced in America
    Benjamin Barton a watchmaker who arrived in the America December 1801 and started his watchmaker business right away. It tells us something, that the watch was in Alexandria after Dec 4 1801
    I believed that my watch was made for Robert Burns
    Is there a date on the mechanism somewhere?
    Is it possible that it was re- cased
    The watch has not had an easy life
    Any input would be appreciated

    i
    [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] n

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  2. Dr. Jon

    Dr. Jon Registered User
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    Dec 14, 2001
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    Nice watch.

    I doubt the watch was made for Robert Burns, more likely a tribute to him. That also explains the dating. The watch may have been recased but more likely the mark registration date was a renewal.
     
  3. gmorse

    gmorse Registered User
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    Jan 7, 2011
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    Hi Dr. Jon,

    I agree that this unusual balance cock was made for a devotee of the poet and not for the man himself. The "V&Co" incuse mark was first registered on 24th Jan 1816 according to Priestley. The style of the movement fits well with 1817.

    Regards,

    Graham
     
  4. alberta mike

    alberta mike Registered User

    Mar 28, 2013
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    Appreciate the feed back guys
    So what I have now is a watch made in 1817 for a "fan" of Burns that spent most of its life in Alexandria DC area and subsequently Baltimore
    Would this type of watch be purchased by a well to do person or at the time was it the standard watch of the day?
     
  5. gmorse

    gmorse Registered User
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    Jan 7, 2011
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    Hi Mike,

    The watch is unexceptional in all respects apart from the custom engraving on the balance cock.

    Incidentally, I should be careful how you handle this, since I notice that at least two of the pins holding the plates together are missing.

    Regards,

    Graham
     
  6. alberta mike

    alberta mike Registered User

    Mar 28, 2013
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    Hi Ray
    Do you have a year for your watch?
    Ian

    - - - Updated - - -

    Thanks Graham
    Crush a guy when he is down

    Ian
     
  7. Dr. Jon

    Dr. Jon Registered User
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    Dec 14, 2001
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    In the early 1800's almost all watches were for well to do people. "Proletarian" watches came about in the mid to late 1800's with Waltham cracking open the door and Roskopf and Waterbury breaking it down.

    The carved balance cock on this one is unique to my experience and likely done to order. This kind of work was done one by one, often by the watchmaker's wife and is likely to have been on commission.
     
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