1926 Waltham Railroad Pocket Watch

Value (2015) | $2,500 Retail$3,500 Retail
Watch  

GUEST:
This is my father's pocket watch, and he wore it every day that I can possibly remember, and it has this little leather thong on it. He was a cattle rancher down out of Ritzville, and he wore it on his belt loop, in his pocket, and he didn't wear a regular watch because he worked so hard that he would break a regular watch, like, in three or four days, so he wore it always when he was, like, baling hay or driving tractor or throwing calves.

APPRAISER:
Let me tell you about the watch a little bit. It's made by Waltham Watch Company in Waltham, Massachusetts. They started in Roxbury, but they soon after set up shop in Waltham. They went into business in the mid-1800s. They went out of business in 1957.

GUEST:
Really? So this is old?

APPRAISER:
Yeah, sure. Now, at the end of production, they made approximately 35 million pocket watches. So there's a lot of them out there.

GUEST:
Yes, it is.

APPRAISER:
Let me tell you about yours. It's a railroad watch. It has these large Arabic numerals. Down below, you have a subsidiary second hand. But did you ever notice the other dial up on top of the watch?

GUEST:
Yeah.

APPRAISER:
Do you know what it's for?

GUEST:
No.

APPRAISER:
What it is, it's a wind indicator. When you wind the watch, it tells him how much power is left in the winding mechanism so that it wouldn't run out accidentally.

GUEST:
Huh!

APPRAISER:
It's an added feature. It's the kind of thing you don't see on every railroad watch. Now what we want to do is we want to turn it around.

GUEST:
Okay.

APPRAISER:
What we're going to do is talk about what makes this watch a little better than the average open-face railroad watch. In the center, over here, is a diamond end stone. Usually, they're synthetic rubies, but they use the diamond end stone.

GUEST:
Is it a real diamond?

APPRAISER:
It's a real diamond, yes.

GUEST:
Ooh!

APPRAISER:
We see over here it's a Waltham Vanguard.

GUEST:
Okay.

APPRAISER:
And then we travel over here, and it tells us that it's 23 jewels. 23 jewels is a nice option; a lot of them are 21. And then we go up here and we see that it's six-position. A lot of them came five positions. So these are just... All those little bells and whistles...

GUEST:
Wonderful

APPRAISER:
that add up and tell us that it's a quality watch.

GUEST:
Great.

APPRAISER:
Let's turn it around.

GUEST:
Isn't that something, that a rancher would have a railroad watch?

APPRAISER:
Yeah, and a very high-end one.

GUEST:
Yeah.

APPRAISER:
If you have to go out and buy this watch again today, I feel you would have to pay somewhere between $3,000 and $5,000.

GUEST:
Holy Toledo! Woo-hoo! That's wonderful. You're kidding?

APPRAISER:
I'm not kidding you, no.

GUEST:
I mean, he banged this thing around every single day on this thong, just tied to his... This is wonderful, thank you!

APPRAISER:
I'm so glad you're happy.

GUEST:
Oh, I love it. Thank you so much.

APPRAISER:
You're welcome.

Appraisal Details

Appraiser
Doyle New York
New York, NY
Update (2015)
$2,500 Retail$3,500 Retail
Appraised value (2007)
$3,000 Retail$5,000 Retail
Event
Spokane, WA (August 04, 2007)
Period
20th Century
Material
Diamonds, Metal

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