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Frontier Railroad Presentation, Waltham 18k Gold Pocket Watch,

Hunter Case,1871

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A rare and historic American Frontier presentation 18k gold hunter case Waltham 18 size pocketwatch produced in 1871.

Relatively few American Frontier presentation gold watches were produced, and of these a limited number were railroad associated. The great majority of nineteenth century American gold watches were put up in 14 karat gold cases since this alloy held up well in service. Eighteen karat gold cases were reserved for the most expensive watches, and for important presentation watches.

This exceptional watch is engraved on its inner rear cover; "Presented To, C. E. Lewis, By The employee, West Div., H & St.Joe, RR". The HANIBAL & ST.JOSEPH RAILROAD was one of the pioneer rail lines of the American West. The railroad began in 1851 in both cities. It was the first railroad to cross the Missouri river, it carried the first letter to the 'Pony Express' in 1860, It was attacked by Confederate raiders during the Civil War, and was attacked by Jesse James gang after the war. The serial number of this Waltham watch indicates it was produced in 1871 which was the year the Hanibal & St.Joseph launched a major construction effort to finish the line. The building of railroads across the American West - a difficult and dangerous undertaking - enabled the settlemet of the Frontier and the coast to coast growth of the United States.

Click Here  and  Click Here for history of the Hanibal & St.Joseph RR: 

Mr. C. E. Lewis must have done something very important to be recognized by the employees of the railroad through the presentation of a top grade 18k solid gold cased large hunting case pocketwatch. Further research should lead to interesting historical information.

This watch features an American Watch Company (Waltham) 15 jewel, Model 1870, 'Crescent Street' 18s movement. This was one of the highest grade watches produced by the company at the time. Research indicates only 17,880 movements of this type were produced. This movement has the early and scarce 'nail set' feature for setting the watch hands. Built as a key wind watch it was adapted, using a patented mechanism, to the then new stem wind system during the course of the watch being cased. The beautifuly designed and engraved three lid yellow gold hunting case is marked inside the both outer covers with an '18k' gold mark (in addition the case tests as 18k gold).

Condition: The 18k gold case is in excellent condition, the lid opening at a proper 90 degree angle, all lids with good closure, and some very light carry wear on the exterior surfaces. The 'Crescent Street' movement is in excellent condition and running nicely. The double sunk porcelain dial is excellent, and the lovely blued steel hands are original.

This watch is a rare, beautiful, and historic artifact of American Railroad history and the romance of the American West. We have treasured this piece for over twenty five years.

Dimensions: overall height 3", case diameter 2 1/8"

Price: $2450.00

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