All that we know about time the astronomers have taught us. The only absolute measure of time is the stately procession of the stars as the revolution of the earth brings them across the zenith.
But, for convenience in the everyday affairs of men, "time" must always mean what our watches tell of the passing human hours, minutes and seconds.
So one of the great practical services of the astronomer today is to contribute star-time precision to the making of watches for men and women.
And as the Elgin Professional Watch Makers are never satisfied to do anything by halves, years ago they established a Tim Observatory at the Elgin Watch Factory, for the sole purpose of taking star observations. And so supplying the most precise time standards to the making of Elgin Watches.
All through the Elgin Factories the electric sounders are reproducing the ticks of the Observatory Master Clock, checked by star-time.
Every process in adjusting and timing the Elgin Railroad Watch carried by the conductor and engineer of your morning train was performed in the light of these standards.
So, too, with your own pocket watch; your Elgin Strap Watch; the Elgin Wrist Watch you gave your wife or daughter. Not a single watch ever comes from Elgin gains in professional timekeeping character from the work of the Elgin Time Observatory.
Nor is this all. To every man and woman in the Elgin factories, the Time Observatory is an inspiration - a constant reminder of their obligation to all who buy Elgin Watches.
The watch-owner, too, feels the inspiration in higher understanding of timekeeping standards, and the desire for better and better watches.
And the Time Observatory of the Elgin Watch comes in a peculiar and literal sense to be the "Old Homestead of Father Time."