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MyrridinEmrys

Mystery inside a puzzle....

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Aquired this pocket watch some months ago but it has me puzzled.

It's an 18s lever with sterile face set weighing in at a respectable 150gms The case is marked as the Keystone Watch Case Co (keystone over scales only with no writing - 74791.) The movement has a stamped 'Lyre' which points to Achille Ditisheim, yet there is a small attached engraved plate which reads 'California Watch & Jewelry Co, S Fr.' The CWJ Co only came into being in 1991 so I'm presuming the plate is a recent addition.

The watch works but runs fast so prob could do with a service.

Any thoughts welcome?

 

https://flic.kr/p/DcvHKm

https://flic.kr/p/ZfrqWh

https://flic.kr/p/GoEGzZ

https://flic.kr/p/21kehxM

 

IMG_1961

 

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Handsome watch ,love it. .

the ‘plate ‘ looks original to me ,would have been awful lot of trouble to make it as an addition to the movement .more recently.

cant help beyond that ,sorry

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Like That, but as Bridgeman, can't help :thumbs_up:

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Interesting, it has two dial feet which points it to being Swiss movement, as does the counterbalanced lever, which was the inn thing at one time, i would date it approx 1890

American made movements had three dial feet and of a different flair and style

America used to buy in swiss made movements and fit them in their own cases, certainly a nice watch!! :) 

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After consulting ORAC in his transparent plexiglas box, I would agree also with HB7, it was fairly common back in the day for Swiss movements to be fitted to"locally" made cases, both in the US and here in the UK to avoid imports taxes and duties!

:tumbleweed: Not quite in the Paradise Papers league, but it did happen - - and continues with "timekeeping parts" on some Chinasian packages through the door here occasionaly :whistle:

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What perplexes me is the plate engraving. According to https://www.manta.com/c/mm28pzx/california-watch-and-jewelry  California Watch and Jewelry Co was established in 1991. There was a California Watch Co but this went bust after 12 months in 1877 and their watches bear no resembalance to mine: https://pocketwatchdatabase.com/guide/company/california-watch-co/images

I'm tempted to lift the plate and see what lies beneath! :-)

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I would hazzard a guess and say that it was retailed  by California watch Co, and that they had a few silver plated brass plaques engraved with their name and this was then screwed onto the movement at an appropriate place, they probably screwed a lot of plaques onto watch movements then sold them on in my opinion :) 

The watch could easily date from 1877.............. 13 years out was not a bad guess!! :laugh:

Having a Swiss movement fitted would still have been cheaper than an American one...........

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What an interesting and puzzling watch this is. The dial is rather lovely and classic but note the unusual placing of the large seconds register - at the three o'clock position. I have discovered some fascinating information online relating to a celebrated factory building in Riverside, New Jersey, that was once the home of the Philadelphia (Keystone) Watch Case Company - after the building had been completed in 1908. In addition, I have read that the movements for watches cased by Keystone tended to come from the New York Standard Watch Company, a subsidiary of Keystone. The Keystone Watch Case Company was founded in 1853, and was from the start based in Riverside, New Jersey. Various mergers led by 1905 to Keystone being the largest watch case manufacturer in America.

Looking at your watch in terms of its overall case style and decoration, I believe that it dates to around 1900 or just before and this ties in nicely with the dating for the movement given by our own harryblakes7. I certainly do not think that this watch is as early as the 1870s or early 1880s.

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