Question Regarding Vintage Watch
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Thread: Question Regarding Vintage Watch

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  1. #1
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    Question Regarding Vintage Watch

    I have been gifted a vintage pocket watch and would like to know if there is any history behind it. I have searched online but haven't been able to find
    anything regarding watchmaker or date. I should add that I am not interested in a valuation of the watch as it has sentimental value to me and I do not intend to seeling it.

    Thank you to anyone more knowledgeable than me on offering some information!

    From what I could gather with my eyes, the writing on the clock face reads "J. Sewill Liverpool Prize Medal 1862"
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  2. #2
    Vint. Forum Co-Moderator Mirius's Avatar
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    Re: Question Regarding Vintage Watch

    Hi and welcome.

    You are going to get more informed answers if you can show us the movement which is behind the inner cover. Closer photos with more watch and less background are also helpful.


  3. #3
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    Re: Question Regarding Vintage Watch

    Thank you for the welcome and the feedback, I am not seeing any evident way of opening up the inner cover. I guess I would need special tools for that?

    Thank you for the quick answer though, I will definetly look into how to open up the inner cover.

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    Re: Question Regarding Vintage Watch

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  6. #5
    Member Old Navman's Avatar
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    Re: Question Regarding Vintage Watch

    According to information I found Joseph Sewill from Liverpool was a famous chronometer, watch and nautical instrument maker. I'd say the watch is probably from around 1860-1880's.
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  7. #6
    Member rickhufnagel7's Avatar
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    Re: Question Regarding Vintage Watch

    You have quite a treasure gifted to you there. Wow! What a beauty. A very nice watch! A Google search for Joseph sewill will give you more information. I just spent my lunch reading about this maker! I'm not very learned about the various english makers, but I can tell just by looking at it, it's an exceptional movement. Sorry for the Google search routine, but there's a ton of information around online about this maker.

    The case is spectacular as well. If you can take a clear picture of the hallmarks on the inside I'll do my best to figure them out for you.

    Please please please don't run this watch much before it is serviced by a professional. If it runs, that's fantastic, but old oil and dust/dirt form an abrasive substance that will promote wear and tear and cause dammage to your beautiful treasure.

    Congratulations on your aquisition and enjoy! I've enjoyed the pictures, so thank you. Im going to be keeping an eye out for Joseph Sewill from now on for sure!



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  8. #7
    Member Dan S's Avatar
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    Re: Question Regarding Vintage Watch

    Quote Originally Posted by rickhufnagel7 View Post
    I'm not very learned about the various english makers, but I can tell just by looking at it, it's an exceptional movement.
    Can you elaborate? What are you looking at that tells you it's an exceptional movement?
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    ------- @oldwatchdan on Instagram -------

  9. #8
    Member rickhufnagel7's Avatar
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    Re: Question Regarding Vintage Watch

    Ya, I suppose exceptional isn't the best word to use. I had been looking at the condition, and jeweling, and it's well above average as far as the ones I have seen.

    To explain, I have been looking through piles of English movements and watches, for a couple months, looking for a specific watch (which I'll probably never find) and this movement is much nicer, better jeweled and finished, than the majority of the ones I have seen that are of the same 3/4 plate style. It's not the typical garden variety i have seen so many of.

    Forgive my ignorance, i am admittedly a novice in English watches.

    If I am mistaken, please elaborate!


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  10. #9
    Member Old Navman's Avatar
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    Re: Question Regarding Vintage Watch

    Even though the watch face is signed J. Sewill Liverpool I believe that, similar to early Swiss watch pioneers, Sewill might have sourced his ebauches from Prescot (Yorks)
    and later on movements from Thomas Mercer.

    Prescot since the mid 1600's was a known centre for watch motion makers, watch hand and wheels makers, watch tool makers, finishers.

    As to the movement - even as you say your movement is well jewelled etc and this may well be the case. Attached are images I sourced from the
    internet for comparison: the J. Sewill movement on the left is also lever, 3/4 plate quite inexpensive.

    The one on the right on the other hand, with unusual stud, highly priced. If it was one of those I'd say you have an exceptional watch.

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  11. #10
    Member rickhufnagel7's Avatar
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    Re: Question Regarding Vintage Watch

    Ah, now I see. Thank you navman! Nice explanation.

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