The 2nd 16 Size Hamilton Made
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  1. #1
    Member thoth's Avatar
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    The 2nd 16 Size Hamilton Made

    Still in a kind of "what did I do" frame of thought. I was hunting around and came across the sale of a Hamilton 962 with a serial of 50002. Well the seller was talking about how this was the 2nd 962 made of 350. That is interesting....then I started digging. I came across this document.

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    Here the statement is made that the 962, as listed in the factory production book, was a total of 430 watches sent to finishing 2/6/1897.

    Then there is this note.....

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    "Records show a few sold late 1896".....This means that the factory numbers would be incorrect as they would not sell watches in 1896 that were not sent to finishing until 1897 unless it is talking about pre production selling. So this leads to the numbers..... If the factory says 962 started at 50071 and this is 50002 there is the 50001 to 50070 uncounted for and would be what this note means.

    Then you get this.....

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    Here is where the numbering get odd. 50001-50010 962 then 50011-50020 964 back to 962 for 50021-50060 and then you don't see a 962 run until 50101-50400. My math says 350 total for the 962 and that only the first 50 were produced in 1896. As to when they were produced in 1896 goes back to the note. If they sold some 962's in 1896 it could only have been these 50. The one I am getting is a private label. There is another individual out there with 50007 that is a private label as well. Based on this I think the first run of 10 were all private label. But it left me thinking about number 50001. I can find no evidence of anyone having it anywhere....or at least it has not been mentioned where Google finds anything. Maybe Fred knows? I would have thought it would be in the NAWCC Museum or in the hands of some Museum at this point but no luck. So there is the background. The 962 was the first production 16 size movement they made and they started at 50001....making this new project of mine #2.

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    The intention will be to restore it. The hands are good....but from there....needs a service. Needs a staff. Needs a 4 footed dial. Needs a better case. Now when I say restore, I am not talking about just making it all pretty. I am not ditching the dial or the case. The case though I am not sold on being original. If I find the case is not original I will try and find the period correct one for it that would have been used by Hamilton. As the note says, they only sold the 962 as uncased watches. Being a private label, the jeweler could put any case available on it. The dial matches the single sunk on the 50007 watch and is a more common dial. I think my main issue will be the case as these had a larger pillar plate and looking at the watch without the bezel looks like the plate is larger than the dial.

    I wonder if they had a larger dial on these or what. Anyway, this is the start of a project but one I am happy to take on.

  2. #2
    Member thoth's Avatar
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    Re: The 2nd 16 Size Hamilton Made

    I retract what I said on the dial. It is wrong. Should say Hamilton Watch Co like my 960. So I will not worry about hanging on to the dial. I still will but it is like holding on to the wrong wheels for a classic car you are restoring. eh...
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  3. #3
    Member thoth's Avatar
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    Re: The 2nd 16 Size Hamilton Made

    Ok....I also retract what I said about the 50007 watch being a private label.....the movement is unmarked and only says "Adjusted" and the serial number. Told you I am not thinking right.
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  5. #4
    Member thoth's Avatar
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    Re: The 2nd 16 Size Hamilton Made

    Can anyone explain the ledger info? I see Ball got the 50001 watch but then it looks like it says "do" or "dt" for 50002.

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    Does this mean Ball also bought it and then it was resold to the retailer BH Stief Co?

    Edit-----


    So it looks like the consensus is that Ball bought 7 of the first 10. I also found that 50004 was sold at auction and was private label "E. Jaccard Co." and as the ledger says Ball had 50004 then he was just acting as their agent for the west as noted on line. Wonder if any of the 7 were ever marked for Ball.
    Last edited by thoth; May 5th, 2018 at 00:49.
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  6. #5
    Member thoth's Avatar
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    Re: The 2nd 16 Size Hamilton Made

    My local guy has a double sunk and a single sunk dial with the right script. I am leaning to single sunk as the other 2 in this run had single sunk. Still looking just to be sure.

    Sent from my SM-G920R4 using Tapatalk
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  7. #6
    Vintage & NAWCC Forum moderator Ben_hutcherson's Avatar
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    Re: The 2nd 16 Size Hamilton Made

    I'll text Rhett and see if he might have any thoughts on this. Fred Sr. might have some ideas also-I talked to him Sunday but we didn't talk about your watch so I don't know.
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  8. #7
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    Re: The 2nd 16 Size Hamilton Made

    Quote Originally Posted by Ben_hutcherson View Post
    I'll text Rhett and see if he might have any thoughts on this. Fred Sr. might have some ideas also-I talked to him Sunday but we didn't talk about your watch so I don't know.

    I have been a bit of a traitor on this watch. I have been also having a chat on the NAWCC forum about it.

    Jim and others think the dial would have been a Stief marked dial. The ledger may indicate Ball as being who ordered the watches but on the actual order was where the request for the PL was made. SO while the ledger may say Ball, the movements would not have been marked Ball but could be marked with a different PL or nothing. It looks like if one was ordered, like number 50007, for a individual or a jeweler that did not specify any markings, the watch would ship with just the serial and the word Adjusted on the movement. The dial would be a full script single sunk dial.

    I stopped by my local watchmaker to see the 4 footed dials he had available. 2 were double sunk and 2 single sunk. One of the doubles was very badly damaged. The other was ok but lots of hairlines. The 2 singles though....both were undamaged. I went with the single Roman that is below. There are no chips or hairlines.

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    I have a set of hands on the way from Marty that would be appropriate color and style for an early 16s Hamilton. The watch is sitting at home waiting for me so I hope I can get it up and going in the next week or so and all together.
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  9. #8
    Vintage & NAWCC Forum moderator Ben_hutcherson's Avatar
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    Re: The 2nd 16 Size Hamilton Made

    Quote Originally Posted by thoth View Post
    I have been a bit of a traitor on this watch. I have been also having a chat on the NAWCC forum about it.
    I remembered seeing your thread on the NAWCC forum, but couldn't find it when I went looking for it.

    In any case, if Rhett didn't respond I'll try and shoot him a text tonight and see if he'll pop in there or here. Between he, Jim, Fred Jr., John Cote, Fred Sr. and Terry Hall(plus a few others I'm probably forgetting) you can get a lot of questions answered about early Hamiltons. Put up a question about a watch like this right before a big show where a lot of them will be and we can get a pretty good conversation going about it either in the mart room that afternoon, over dinner, in the hotel bar(I don't drink but I'll usually hang around to see what I can contribute and pick up) or at Lexington even in my enormous hotel room behind the registration desk after they decide to retire from the bar. The last(really in anyone's hotel room) is when the REALLY good stuff starts coming out as a lot of folks are understandably hesitant to flash a $20K watch in a restaurant or bar.

    It's a shame that the show at Valparaiso died after the Hansens gave it up-that was an outstanding show. I went 4 or 5 years in a row, and both made some great sales and bought some great stuff. That would have been a reasonably close one for you, and it was a big show.
    thoth and busmatt like this.
    Member National Association of Watch and Clock Collectors
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    Serious collector of American pocket watches-Waltham(and the predecessor companies) is my specialty.

  10. #9
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    Re: The 2nd 16 Size Hamilton Made

    Last show I made it to was the national in Milwaukee a few years back. I need to get out more. The guys have been very helpful on the other forum too.

    I guess one of my main thoughts or question is if Ball kept detailed records. As I noticed that the ledger shows #1 being sent to Ball on its own. Was it done by order or was this Hamilton sending one of their biggest agents a gift. Wonder if it was PL Webb C Ball....

    Sent from my SM-G920R4 using Tapatalk
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  11. #10
    Vintage & NAWCC Forum moderator Ben_hutcherson's Avatar
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    Re: The 2nd 16 Size Hamilton Made

    You MIGHT give Don Barrett at City Bank Antiques a call. Jeff Hess would be another good contact and would probably have access to the records if they still exist.
    thoth and busmatt like this.
    Member National Association of Watch and Clock Collectors
    Member, NAWCC Chapter 149. Vice President and Secretary NAWCC Chapter 140. Member, NAWCC Convention Committee.
    Serious collector of American pocket watches-Waltham(and the predecessor companies) is my specialty.

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