Share your ephemera!
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  1. #1
    Member Tick Talk's Avatar
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    Share your ephemera!

    The rabid collectors not only covet watches, but also ephemera and accessories; those bits of advertising papers and props, boxes and baubles, never intended to survive past your first house move. Its an entertaining aspect of watch collecting that I'm sure many others enjoy. Here is a glimpse of mine, so please share yours.
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    Tick Talk says, "A watch in the hand is worth two on the wrist"

  2. #2
    Member Eeeb's Avatar
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    Re: Share your ephemera!

    I have a whole room full of stuff.... actually more than a room as I've moved a lot of the empty watch boxes and associated literature into storage. But the library might be of interest. I posted this in the Books forum once but a repeat might get this thread along...

    ... here are my books. Some have been added since the pics but not many. The most interesting added but not shown is Daniels' Watchmaking. It finally got reprinted!!

    The books are arranged by topic.

    This first section is the serious repair books for mechanical watches. Two authors, Fried and DeCarle dominate this literature. Topics they produced are general repair and then a series of specialties like bench practices, escapement, crystals, adjustments and the like. (Atop is a mid 70s Bell System lineman's helmet. This was the last issue before the breakup of the Bell System.)



    When you buy books in lots you often get clock repair books. The green one "Repairing Old Clocks And Watches" is interesting. The watches are 19th century pocket watches. But the only part I have read much of is the clock section which is written with a good sense of the reader. I remember one line that went something like "And if at this point the pieces and parts of the clock are suddenly flung through out the room, you forgot to let down the mainspring."

    Notice the set of Hamilton Electric repair manuals. Someday I'll start fixing them



    Some more serious books... the ones that tell you how to fix quartz watches! This is driven by my moderation of HAQ and has been far and away the most difficult to obtain. The Hyltin on digital watches is personally signed by the author to the person to whom the book was dedicated. And the Fried books are both signed by the author -- a collection within a collection! Rounding out the shelf are Elgin and Timex repair manuals. I wish they were complete but only the Timex set is anywhere near complete.

    Oh one thing, the Freid electric watch repair book came in two editions. There is some overlapping material but they cover different movements and you need both to get most of the common electric and tuning fork movements.



    Watch catalogs are an important part of many collections. Swatch, TAG, auction catalogs, and a sampling of others...




    Here we have two shelves mostly dedicated to a large set of monthly bulletins of the National Association of Watch and Clock Collectors... I bought the set from a bookseller in upper New York state. I stumbled across the issue that had two (not one but two) reviews of Daniels' Watchmaking when it came out. It was worth the cost.

    My membership in the NAWCC has produced the few color issues at the end.



    This is the shelf with the real literature! The two most important books about John Harrison; Doensen's WATCH (signed by the author), an incredibly beautiful exposition of the history of the post-mechanical watches; two very informative books by Daniels; some brand specialty books anchored on the end by the recently printed Heuer Chronographs by Arno Haslinger - a definitive and most beautiful book loved by Heuer and racing fans alike. Being both, I doubly love it.




    Technical documentation is important if you want to collect vintage electronics (or if you want to know what you are talking about in HAQ - it's a technical crew!) Well, it might be important if I carve out the time to get some real watchmaking skills... which is on hold until retirement (but that's not too far! ) [Well, I've since retired but somehow still haven't done it. It is still on the list!! ]

    "Forever is composed of nows." - Emily Dickinson

    "The watch has to be surrounded by a history.
    You need more than just a great design. You need to create an atmosphere around the product.
    Who is the company behind it? Why are they using this material?
    People need to be able to identify the watch with themselves. It's based on emotion." - Ralph Furter

    ...that's just my opinion and I've been wrong before and will be again and might be now!

  3. #3
    Member radger's Avatar
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    Re: Share your ephemera!

    Very nice collection of original boxes and papers with your watches.

    I think the best watches, as these, are more likely to survive with original
    boxes etc, I have many old watches but very few original boxes.

    I did pull a bauble from a box of watchmakers junk though. These
    200m 'copper' Rolex anchors are quite rare from what I gather.


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  5. #4
    Member Tick Talk's Avatar
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    Re: Share your ephemera!

    Super books! Do you have the elusive Pritchard's?
    Tick Talk says, "A watch in the hand is worth two on the wrist"

  6. #5
    Member Eeeb's Avatar
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    Re: Share your ephemera!

    Quote Originally Posted by Tick Talk View Post
    Super books! Do you have the elusive Pritchard's?
    I think I actually ended up with two copies.
    "Forever is composed of nows." - Emily Dickinson

    "The watch has to be surrounded by a history.
    You need more than just a great design. You need to create an atmosphere around the product.
    Who is the company behind it? Why are they using this material?
    People need to be able to identify the watch with themselves. It's based on emotion." - Ralph Furter

    ...that's just my opinion and I've been wrong before and will be again and might be now!

  7. #6
    Member Tick Talk's Avatar
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    Re: Share your ephemera!

    I stumbled across a collection of papers stored inside the bottom of a box set once. This find was very interesting because the paperwork allowed me to trace the original owner of a long-gone V&C triple calendar and piece together a story...

    First to be revealed was a Certificate of Origin, dated September 1953, for a watch described as having an 18kt. gold case, calendar and moon phases, on leather bracelet with gold buckle.

    An instruction booklet for a Jaeger-LeCoultre calendar watch, in English. “Instructions for Setting the Jaeger-Le Coultre Calendar Watch to the right time and date”. Knowing that JLC and V&C were jointly owned by the same holding company, I was nevertheless surprised that this booklet was offered by the V&C retailer.

    An invoice from Vacheron & Constantin, Geneve, dated 16 September 1953 and for the same watch described in the Certificate, revealed the purchase price $156.00 or Fr. 665. Sold to Monsieur Costas Vasili Dedes.

    A store card for Taillard Frères, Genève; Horlogerie-Bijouterie/Watches-Jewelry.

    A receipt from the concierge at the Beau-Rivage for the occupants for room 209. Two guests partook of a city tour and a trip on the lake, the cost of which was added to the previously documented laundry services. Vacheron & Constantin advertising at the bottom of the receipt suggests they maintained a boutique within this hotel.

    A dry-cleaning receipt for the occupant of room 209 at the Hotel Beau-Rivage, Geneva, dated 14 September 1953. You may be interested to know that a two-piece blue suit was dropped off for mending and ironing.

    A bit of internet searching revealed a wealth of information on Costas Vasili Dede. Gus to his friends, was born in Albania in 1905 and became a naturalized American citizen in 1933. He was employed as a waiter in 1942 when he enlisted in the U.S. Army, where he eventually became a Sergeant.

    In 1953, Mr. and Mrs. Dede flew to Geneva. I assume this was their honeymoon as their only son was born in 1955. Gus married a Greek woman, eight years his junior, by the name of Theofoni. From the 11thto 25thof September, their travel itinerary indicates passage via Trans World Airlines from Rome to Geneva, then to London and back to New York. The lack of flight records to Rome signifies they may have commenced their honeymoon with a journey by steamship.

    It appears Gus and Theofoni worked hard and owned a restaurant. Unfortunately, a lawsuit brought years later by one against the other regarding the sale of this asset suggests they had an acrimonious separation.

    Gus passed away in 1998 and is buried in Detroit. His wife followed two years later. Tragically, their son died at the age of 47, leaving behind a widow and two children.

    In some small way I feel a connection with Gus. As a first-time visitor to Geneva in 2010, I dined at the Beau Rivage and can almost picture the city through his eyes. Knowing a bit about Mr. Dede’s history, I also marvel at his choice of watch to mark the visit!
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    Tick Talk says, "A watch in the hand is worth two on the wrist"

  8. #7
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    Re: Share your ephemera!

    OK, I AM IMPRESSED and I sincerely mean that! WOW

    I think the books, cases AND ESPECIALLY THE PAPERWORK is fantastic!

    CONGRATULATIONS!
    Have Discovered Vintage Pocket Watches!

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