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!

There are some large images on some posts, so that might impact your load times, bit I think you will find it worth the wait. Thanks for visiting!

Elgin Grade 12

Here's an older one.

The notable feature here is that the dial is marked "National Watch Co", which is the original name Elgin used for the first couple of years of operation.  They changed it to Elgin National, as in the name of the city of Elgin, since people were calling the products "watches from Elgin" anyway.

This grade 12 is an 11 jewel watch, made about 1872, named for M. D. Ogden model.  It is key wind and key set in a hunter case, triple-hinged,  of coin silver.

Elgin Grade 240

The Elgin grade 240 is an interesting high end model.  It is a large 18 size watch that is designed like a 16 size Veritas.  19 jewels, double-sunk dial, lever-set, B. W. Raymond name...

This one dates to 1903.

Dry Hands?

I have trouble with extremely dry skin on my hands, particularly in the winter. Needless to say this isn't a great situation for watch work. I have tried many, many solutions, but this stuff, conveniently called Watchmaker's Salve is the best by a wide margin.

I especially like the fact that it comes in a large container wide enough for the knuckles, which I can then rub into my palms. This helps keep it where I want it and not so much on my fingers where I don't.
Dry hands? Give this stuff a try, available here:

Click "Older Posts" just above for more, or use the archive links right here.

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