Classic watches, watchmaking, antique tools, history, vintage ephemera and more!

Learn about mechanical timepieces and how they work, the history of the American watch industry and especially all about the Elgin National Watch Company! Check back for new content daily.

Although this is technically a blog, the content is not generally in a time-based sequence. You can find interesting items throughout. Down the page some is an alphabetical word cloud of keywords used here. A great way to dig in is to look through those topics and click anything you find interesting. You'll see all the relevant content.

Here are a few of my favorites!

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Elgin Advertising, 1929

When minutes mean life itself...  ELGIN keeps time

Down twenty fathoms to the slither and muck of the ocean floor where death dwells in the queer green twilight, slowly sinks a diver.

On deck men stand intent at the air lines...  eyes fixed to the stream of bubbles rising from the diver going down, eyes fixed to the air gauges  ...and to the creeping hands of an ELGIN.

For here...  as the heroes of the Falcon salvaged the sunken submarine S-51... life itself was measured by time.  Let time fail...  let a watch deceive the man at the air-pressure controls... and the "bends" will attack the diver...  that strange deep-sea affliction that bends men into knots, that maims and twists and paralyzes...  its perils are vividly set forth in Ellsberg's book "On the Bottom."

Here was no mild and ordinary test of timekeeping.  Here was the grimmest, hardest test a watch can know.  For here life itself was pinned to the hands of a watch.

The odds are certain that you will never don a diving suit and explore the ocean's depths.  Perhaps you'll never pilot a plane...  nor a locomotive.  Never call upon your watch to share in some vast heroic service.  Yet there's pride in owning such a watch that would be worth the payment of a higher price.

But there is no higher price...  ELGIN'S meet and compete in price with every watch of comparable quality.  And as for its accuracy, its timekeeping, its utter dependability...  ask Ellsberg...  or any admiral, general, railroad man from engineer to president, ask any aviator who has told us... and you... how finely their ELGINS have served them.  And just ask your jeweler to show you his array...  as for ELGIN'S style and smart good looks.
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