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Rare Hamilton 1943 Model A "Click" to Login or Register 
Resident Hamilton expert Bryan Girouard has this rare model available. Thought I would share his description and outstanding photo. You can find it, other great watches, and superb photography at his site Art Deco Wristwatches

Extremely rare Hamilton “Model A” men’s Art Deco design wristwatch in solid 14K yellow gold, circa 1943.

Perhaps the rarest model of the grade 980/982 watches produced by Hamilton, the “Model A” was produced around 1943. Never catalogued, it is listed among other special models in Hamilton production records and described as the same as the “Bentley” model but with conventional lugs instead of tube lugs and with a grade 982M movement. It also used the same dial as the “Bentley” model… applied gold numeral dial #D-51. Production appears to have spanned about 6 months in 1943, and a mere 223 examples were produced. This is one of only 2 or 3 examples I’ve seen. It is in near mint condition with sharp case edges and no perceptible wear. Caseback is superb and unengraved. The case measures 39mm long and 21mm wide. Dial has been beautifully restored to its correct original appearance with a parchment white finish and solid 18K gold applied numerals. Has new glass crystal. The watch is powered by its correct 19 jewel grade 982M movement.

Hamilton Model A
Posts: 113 | Location: Waukesha, Wisconsin USA | Registered: September 10, 2006
An interesting story.

During WWII, Hamilton was forbidden by law from diverting any workmen to civilian use that was needed for military production. However, before military contracts and designs were completed and before military production was at full speed Hamilton was able to steal some time for civilian watches. I find it difficult to buy the 1943 date, but 1942 would be OK. Of course, I am often wrong. Smile

Here is the Bentley D51 dial.


Posts: 173 | Location: Columbia, Pennsylvania U.S.A. | Registered: July 13, 2004
IHC Life Member
Hamilton must have, somehow, made a fair number of wristwatches, as I have reasonably quickly been able to find 3 of their 1940's 10K g/f Wadsworth Cushions, and other members have also reported this model.

Posts: 423 | Location: West Walton, United Kingdom | Registered: November 16, 2005
Hamilton WW Expert
IHC Life Member
Picture of Bryan J. Girouard
Yes, this is an interesting watch.

The handwritten notes I copied from Hamilton's special order records indicate that these watches were apparently sold in two runs; I don't know if it was over two years (i.e. 1942-1943 or 1943-1944) or if there was a gap sometime in 1943.

One run I have is month-by-month sales figures for 1943. I don't have a year indicated for the other run of watches sold, either because the original Hamilton records don't say or because it was also 1943 and I didn't bother writing that down. Total I have for both runs is 190 watches... don't know where I got the 223 figure referenced in the original listing!

Another thing to remember... what we commonly refer to as "production records" for Hamilton are actually sales records from the casing department, which may not be exactly the same thing. Will Roseman and I have a theory that this accounts for the unexplained rarity of some models shown to have high production runs, but that is a subject for another time.

Of course, having production or sales records scattered over several document sources will always leave some doubt in my mind as to their completeness.

Anyhow, I don't know how much of a gap there was between when a watch was produced and when it was sold. Hamilton seemed to have assembled some watches from existing (and sometimes obsolete) components during the war, perhaps this was how it was able to circumvent restrictions against new production during wartime, resulting in sales figure reported for 1943 for the Model A.

Bryan J. Girouard
Art Deco Wristwatches
Posts: 169 | Location: Dallas, Texas U.S.A, | Registered: March 30, 2004
Picture of Adam M. Dubin
I like this Bentley (unfortunately not mine), even if someone tells me that this dial is from another Hamilton... Wink

Posts: 261 | Location: Chicago, Illinois USA | Registered: June 01, 2006
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