Antique THOS RUSSELL & SON pocket watch. This timepiece is an interesting, very early ‘Number one’ model. It was actually made by LONGINES, and their hourglass logo can be seen on the balance bridge. The watch features an old type movement, which is wound and set using a key – the old ratchet type key is included. According to the Longines serial number catalogue, the production date is 1875.
The case is sterling silver with three hallmarks:
- The lion passant or walking lion with raised right forepaw, the standard mark for sterling silver (William Ehrhardt Sponsor’s hallmark dating to around 1867).
- An upright sword between three wheat sheaves: the town mark of the Chester Assay Office (Chester hallmark dating to 1877-1888/89).
- The letter ‘P’ is likely a date letter that indicates a the date made for a specific location.
- Small “T.R” makers mark.
The Longines watch company was founded in 1832 by watchmaker Auguste Agassiz, and his two partners, Henri Raiguel and Florian Morel. Initially, the original name of the company was Raiguel Jeune & Cie. However, by 1846, Raigeul and Morel had retired from the watch industry, leaving Agassiz as the sole head of the company.
The name ‘Longines’ comes from a famous pocket watch model created in 1867 by a later head of the company, Ernest Francillon, who had established a manufactory outside the village of Saint-Imier in the meadows of the district Langgewann (Les Longines). This model became so popular that the company began to experience problems with counterfeiting, and so in 1889 the trademark name of ‘Longines’ was registered, making this company the oldest registered watch manufacturer in the world.
The success of Longines has a long history. They have developed highly regarded reputations in equestrian sports such as horse racing, due to their creation of the 20H ‘mono-pusher’ chronograph 1878, which enabled the creation of precise stopwatches suitable for timing professional events.
In the 1940’s, Longines actively collaborated with both UK and US allies, as well as with the Wehrmacht, supplying watches to all warring parties. Many military style watches from the company can be found. In 1945 Longines brought the first watch with automatic winding to market, and in 1952 they were the official timekeeper of the Olympic Winter Games in Oslo.
Today, Longines continues to thrive just as successfully as ever before, and along with Omega and Tissot, is one of the largest brands inside the Swatch Group.
Servicing and Guarantee
This timepiece has been serviced with full disassembly. There is a 6-month guarantee, subject to the usage and care guidelines. The watch comes with its original winding and setting key.
- Original, circular case with hallmarks and serial number on inner cover.
- Sterling silver case body.
- Original mineral crystal (with some scratches – we can replace it with another old-stock crystal for free).
- Sterling silver flip down caseback.
- Comes with original winding key.
- Width w/o crown 43 mm.
- Width w/ crown 51 mm.
- Full height 57.5 mm.
- Thickness 12.8 mm.
Dial and Hands
- Original white enamel dial.
- Thin, elegant Roman numerals.
- “Thos Russell & Son No.1” curved signature below 12 position.
- Small seconds subdial over 6 position.
- Original gold-tone ‘spade’ style hands.
- Dark steel small seconds hand with tail.
- Swiss-made movement.
- Very early Longines keywound keyset caliber.
- 15 jewels.
- Manual wind.
- Side ‘right angle’ Swiss lever escapement.
- Compensated balance with screw weights.
- Pallet fork with ring counterweight.
- Gold plated plates and bridges.
- Gilt wheels.
- Blued screws.
- Testing duration: 2 weeks face up.
- Average timekeeping range: 30-60 sec/day.
Servicing and Guarantee
- Fully serviced with disassembly in our Bristol shop.
- Mechanics in full working order.
- 6-month guarantee.
- Guarantee Terms and Conditions.