What is a Pocket Watch “Grade”?

“Grades” were generally used as a classification system to indicate the quality, level of finish, and characteristics of a movement. Some companies adhered to stricter classification, such as Elgin, where each “grade” was (typically) a specific size, model, finish, orientation, setting type, jewel count, and adjustment level. Other companies, such as Illinois and Waltham, were…

Reconstructing the Seth Thomas Serial Number Database

The already well-established Seth Thomas Clock Company manufactured pocket watches from 1884 to 1915. The movements varied in quality, from low-end 7-Jewel watches to the prestigious 25-Jewel Maiden Lane. Existing Seth Thomas factory records from this era of pocket watch manufacturing are sparse. Fortunately, a few catalogs and advertisements have survived, providing a path to…