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A lady friend has asked me for help with information about a 9 carat gold ladies wristwatch (with a replaced band of 14KGF) by Wales & McCulloch, London,it has 250929 etched inside the back. She cannot open it unfortunately. It has a button on its left side which I guess makes it a chronograph? It is 1" in diameter. We think the hand painted flowers are a later addition.
And another view.
A nice example of its period Michael,
The button on the side probably slides, if so it'll be a 'hack seconds' type movement and quite uncommon.
Last one of this type I had was in a silver military 'trench' type case with luminous cathedral hands and hollowfilled numerals.
The painted dial will almost certainly be original to the watch and as fitted when supplied by the retailer named on that dial, it Could even have been fired under a light clear glaze, but fairly unlikely from its appearance.
The crown I suspect is not original to the watch, and would more likely have had an 'Onion' type crown, which are a more squashed version of a typical fluted pocketwatch type.
Watches like this more often have a 'pipe' on the case which protrudes inside the crown and provides a degree of dustproofing.
Unfortunately, all to often the pipes get cut off to accommodate the type crown as fitted, because there's no recess in them.
Wristwatch Onions are quite hard to find now without parting out a watch or getting lucky with a job lot on eBay etc, and probably why it got this one.
A shot of the movement and hallmarks would be good.
Thanks John. Here are pictures of the movement and the rear cover hallmarks. by the way, though I live in the USA, I am English. Where do you live?
And the hallmarks:
Michael, I'm in Yorkshire, born and raised here
Ok, the watch bears the London import marks for 9ct Gold, and was imported by George Stockwell, who was a prolific importer of precious metals, particularly watch cases.
He mainly operated between 1907 and 1919 according to when he registered his mark, but I have seen cases assayed before and after these dates.
But ......... the plot thickens here, because the mark (Shield) he used on your London assayed watch case, is the one registered to his business address in Birmingham UK - his London registered mark has clipped corners on the bottom edge.
There are also no London date letters in a circular shield for anywhere between 1900 & 1930, which is a realistic time frame for your watch!
The Birmingham assay office Did use a circular shield, but in the 1800's, (far too early) and appear to be mixed up with rectangular styles too!
Looks like a rogue date stamp was used, and is anybody's guess which date it relates to!
Any offers anyone?
On the movement, one feature stands out, and it's the triangular stud holding the hairspring, I've seen this used on Cortebert and IWC pocket watches, but not wristwatches.
It'll be interesting to see if anyone else has come across this on anything else!
The regulator lever also appears to have a slight curve, or is it just a trick of the light?
Thanks John, I'll let my friend know.
I was born in Ipswich, brought up in Cheltenham and lived in Wiltshire before emigrating to America 7 years ago.
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