By W. H. SAMELIUS
Chairman, U. H. A. A. Technical Board
This short article should prove of interest to our readers and should bring about a better understanding and cooperation between the members of the various Guilds, enabling them to use this thought as an argument as to why they should unite to form a larger and stronger state and national association enabling them to get together and pass laws that will prove helpful to themselves and the trade in general.
Mr. Charles T. Higginbotham, Consulting Superintendent of the South Bend Watch Company, author of "Time Measure, Their Construction and Repairs," in the closing paragraph of his book wrote as follows:
"It requires years to become a good watchmaker. No man can justly call himself a watchmaker unless he has a thorough knowledge of the construction, function and adjustment of every member entering into the mechanism of a watch and will see that no botch work is permitted. He should possess the ability to reproduce almost any part as perfectly as the original. A long step in this direction would be to institute state boards of examination, with authority to issue certificates to such as were found competent to properly repair watches. The possession of such a certificate would be an assurance to an employer, and might be placed in a conspicuous position in any jewelry establishment as a guarantee to patrons that their watches brought in for repair would be placed in the hands of competent workmen.
"This would tend to bring our art to a higher plane. It would secure prices for work more in keeping with the skill required for performing it properly.
"The incompetent workman can never be wholly eliminated, but this method would have a decided tendency to cause him to equip himself better, or, in the event of his failure to do so, to regulate him to his proper position."
The thought of licensing watchmakers at that time, 1913, was the same as today and these thoughts are beginning to bear fruit, only through organization work. Be a staunch member, attend your meetings regularly and get your fellow watchmakers to join and by doing so, you will bring the dreams that our former master minds had, come true.