Patek Philippe Pocket Watch, ca. 1914

Value (2016) | $1,500,000 Auction
Watch  

GUEST:
This watch was handed down from my great-grandfather. He was the owner of the St. Paul Pioneer Press and Dispatch back in 1914, when he received this watch. And it was handed down from him to my father, and then he gave it to me.

APPRAISER:
It's manufactured by the Patek Philippe Company of Geneva, Switzerland. This is a photocopy of the original warranty, depicting some of the complications of this watch. The front of the watch has the hour and minute hand, and the second hand. It also has a split chronograph, so you can time two things. It also has a minute register for the chronograph. Off to the side is a slide for chiming the watch. It's called a minute repeater. Where you lift up the slide, and it'll chime the time to the minute.

GUEST:
Okay.

APPRAISER:
When we flip the watch over, you have the day, the date, and the month, along with the moon phase. It's also a perpetual calendar which adjusts for leap year. It's a very complicated watch. And excellent, excellent condition. With the original box, it also has two extra main springs and an extra crystal underneath. It has the original crystals and original 18-karat gold engine-turned case. Have you had any appraisals, or do you have any information on it?

GUEST:
I had an appraisal done probably 15 years ago, and they told me at that time, it is probably worth about $6,000.

APPRAISER:
They were a little low.

GUEST:
Really?

APPRAISER:
Yes. Patek Philippe is now purchasing those watches for their museum. This watch at auction, I suspect, would bring close to a quarter million dollars.

GUEST:
No!

APPRAISER:
Yes.

GUEST:
A quarter million?

APPRAISER:
This is one incredible watch. I've never held a watch like this in my hands.

GUEST:
What? You're kidding.

APPRAISER:
That is one incredible watch.

GUEST:
That can't be.

APPRAISER:
Yes.

GUEST:
No way!

APPRAISER:
It is an incredible watch.

GUEST:
I can't believe it.

APPRAISER:
It's the finest watch I've ever held in my hand.

GUEST:
Are you serious?

APPRAISER:
I've never seen anything like it other than photos.

GUEST:
Gosh, how do I get it home? (laughing)

APPRAISER:
Carefully. Do not drop it.

GUEST:
That is unbelievable.

APPRAISER:
Keep it in a safe deposit box.

GUEST:
Well, that's where I have had it all this time, but I... oh my gosh, that is incredible.

Appraisal Details

Appraiser
Hartquist Jewelers
St. Paul, MN
Update (2016)
$1,500,000 Auction
Appraised value (2004)
$250,000 Auction
Event
St Paul, MN (June 26, 2004)
Category
Watches
Material
Gold
December 19, 2016: 1.5 million?! You read that right. After this appraisal was recorded in St. Paul, Minnesota, in 2004 it was discovered that this was a unique Patek Philippe pocket watch. It was specially made in 1914 for George Thompson, an Anglo-American entrepreneur living in St. Paul. Appraiser Paul Hartquist explained to ROADSHOW that the new information enhanced interest in the piece significantly. This watch ultimately sold at Sotheby’s in 2006 for $1,541,212 USD including buyer’s premium.

For more information on the sale visit Sothebys.com.

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