Enamel Pendant Ball Watch, ca. 1895
Appraised Value: $8,000 - $10,000 (2013)
IMAGE: 1 of 3
Appraisal Video: (3:24)
GUEST: Well, it was my grandmother's. From what we can tell from a receipt we have, she purchased it in the early '60s in St. Louis, Missouri. And then a few years ago, my mother gave it to me. But other than that, I really don't know anything.
APPRAISER: You not only know that she purchased it at a department store in St. Louis, you had showed me the original bill of sale with a typewritten letter.
APPRAISER: Do you remember what the price was?
GUEST: Was it $1,350, or...
APPRAISER: It was right around $1,300 and change.
GUEST: Yes, yes.
APPRAISER: What year was that?
APPRAISER: It was clearly written on the bill that it was a ball watch.
APPRAISER: And that's what we call them because of the shape of the watch. Everybody can't see it right away, but if we lift it up, we can see the dial of the watch. You told me something fell off.
GUEST: There was the second hand.
APPRAISER: These watches do not have second hands.
GUEST: Oh, okay, all right.
APPRAISER: It's all right, you were close. It's the minute hand.
GUEST: Oh, okay.
APPRAISER: Now, one of the reasons it fell off is the crystal is missing. To get a new hand and to get a new crystal is a rather simple repair, not the end of the world, it can be fixed. The movement in the watch is Swiss. The watch was manufactured in France. The time period for this watch, when it was manufactured, is around 1895. You have this beautiful pink guilloche enamel. There's engine turning underneath on the gold, and then they put the translucent enamel on top, and it gives us this beautiful pattern and this beautiful chatoyance. What I love about this piece is that it's pink.
APPRAISER: You just don't see pink a whole lot of the time. It's trimmed with this white enamel, and the white enamel was done in such a way that the enamel has a little bit of a cabochon, a little dome to it. It's a special technique. And then on either side of that, you have these rose-cut diamonds. They even did the cap in rose diamonds. And then you look at the bail and the swivel, and the swivel has a spring mechanism in it, which allows you to take the watch off and on, and they're also encrusted with rose diamonds. So many times these come in, they don't have the original chain with it. And here, you not only have the original chain with these matching enamel sections, in between, you have natural pearls, and natural pearls have become very rare and sought after today. When we opened it up, it was unsigned. They just came out of the factory unsigned. They were sold and retailed, but it's not signed on the piece. So any thoughts on what this may be worth?
GUEST: Boy, well, I don't know. Maybe, like, $5,000?
APPRAISER: You know, they were worth $5,000 about three, four years ago.
APPRAISER: At auction, you have $8,000 to $10,000.
GUEST: Oh! My mom is going to want this back. (laughing)
APPRAISER: Oh, really? You should have gotten it in writing.
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