Men’s 1882 Illinois Pocket Watch w/Sterling Chain, Fob

Men’s 1882 Illinois Pocket Watch w/Sterling Chain, Fob

Item: W2488

Watch's origin: American

Number of jewels: 11

Manufacturer: Illinois

Type of Watch:  Pocket

Type: Open-Face

Size: 18s

Composition: Other

Other Attributes:   With Box

Price: $1,750.00

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The Illinois Watch Company is, without question, one of the jewels in the crown of American Watch Houses. Organized in Springfield, Ill. shortly after the Civil War, the company turned out during its 58-year run some of the most magnificent timepieces ever to come to light in this country. Pocket watches with names such as "Bunn Special," "Sangamo Special" and "Diamond, Ruby, Sapphire" and wristwatches such as the "Piccadilly," "Marquis" and "Speedway" — all of which going from innovation, to wide reception to legend. Illinois was farsighted enough to be one of the first American manufacturers to chase the silly idea of marketing a wristlet for men. Having made "convertible wristlets" for women, which could be used as a pendant, hung from a pin or worn with a cord or chain around the wrist, Illinois saw the rabid reception that wristlets received during WWI and felt the time had come for expanded wristwatch manufacture.

Illinois Watch Company, known for their obsessive attention to detail, produced watches that were exciting, elegant, and extraordinarily well-crafted. Today these watches are prized by collectors and designers for their look and reliability. How could one resist the powerful elegance of such a man's watch!

This large, early 18 size Illinois key-wind, key-set pocket watch exudes strength the likes of which we haven't seen in 100 years. A gorgeous porcelain dial is highlighted by Roman numerals, an outer minutes "track" and marked "Illinois" in period script. An oversized sub-seconds bit is micro-graduated; long elegantly blued hands gesture the time.

The watch is housed in an absolutely stunning silveride case, in what might be original polish. Open the back and tight cuvette you'll find another work of art: a completely cleaned, oiled and calibrated 11 ruby jeweled movement, engineered during the horse-and-buggy era by the remarkable minds of Illinois. With its fancy regulator, compensated balance and precision milling, it struck fear in the Swiss watchmakers of the day — most of whom were still locked in a cottage industry that could not approach the precision of the American watches of the period. During the latter part of the 19th century, if one wanted a precision timepiece that could be easily repaired and regulated, one purchased American. This example illuminates why.

Fitted with an equally magnificent and substantive solid silver watch chain and compass fob with key. Each chain link is individually hallmarked. Just a heavy, important piece – certainly worthy of being given as a most thoughtful gift or worn by the main character in your production.

If you're looking for a watch to carry and admire while being admired; or, if you're searching for a gift to reflect the generosity of the giver, this work of horological art might be for you. We are happy to offer this watch and chain in a custom-fitted presentation box.