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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi all,

Based on the number of Tobias posts I've seen around the internet, I'm guessing this is just another annoying Tobias post... lol

Anyway, I have a pocket watch that was my grandfather's before he passed. From all that I've seen and read online, I gather that this is likely a fake, possibly even a "fake Swiss fake" as someone has posted elsewhere regarding some Tobias'. I'm interested in dating it more than anything, but I'm also curious as to its history (if any can be gleaned) as the dial work depicts a woman wearing a blue and white dress with stars holding a red flag and laying a document (Declaration of Independence?) on a revolutionary soldier's head, possibly in the clouds (a soldier who has passed on?)... I've spent hours sifting through pictures and threads on the net looking for similar pocket watches to no avail. Any insight would be helpful. It's in pretty rough condition (as you can see), but it will do some ticking..

I do not see any real hallmarks on the case of the watch to indicate its history, but what I can see are the following details:
- The front of the case features some worn decorations including a wreath and a dog inside a trumpet or horn.
- Inside the front case, I can see "06" lightly stamped.
- Apart from the revolutionary-esque art, the dial is very plain with no text.
- The back of the case appears to have at one time featured a spiraling diamond pattern with a circle in the middle.
- "80006" is lightly stamped inside the back of the case.
- The M. J. Tobias "signature" appears to be of reasonably high quality while the rest of the text engraved into the inner caseback - "LIVERPOOL," "PATENT LEVER," and "FULL JEWELLED" - seems low in quality.
- Inside the inner caseback, I can see another lightly stamped "80006" next to the letters "PI" within a diamond - maybe a hallmark?
- The only engraving I can see on the movement are the letters "S" and "F" with some ticks indicating regulator adjustment direction.

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Well, it's not a "swiss fake" as such; definitely Swiss though. That balance wheel is designed to look like a high-end, bimetallic, adjusted balance wheel, but there's no cut in the arms and the I suspect the "screws" are just for show. It does appear to be "fully jeweled", but we'd need to see the dial side of the watch to know for sure. The very use of that term (along with the faux balance) suggest to me that there could well be only 10 jewels. When this was made, "fully Jeweled" would have suggested 15 jewels (fully jeweled to the third wheel), but there's no easy way to determine if the dial side pivots are actually jeweled without dismantaling it. The hands are so horribly mismatched that I have to assume that was the work of a watch-hack looking to cobble it together from whatever spare parts he had lying around in the shop that fit the posts.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thanks for the info regarding this pocket watch. It's always interesting finding things like this, even if they're poorly made :)
 

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To me, that is a FANTASTIC piece
The center picture may be on glass - very rare. Civil war?

You should send a picture to head curator at NAWCC (Carter Harris)
He can better advise you
A
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
It does look like the center piece is painted on the obverse of the piece of glass (?). If you look close at the 12-1 o'clock area it is separated a little bit. I will look into contacting Carter Harris as you advised. Thanks for the help!


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It does look like the center piece is painted on the obverse of the piece of glass (?). If you look close at the 12-1 o'clock area it is separated a little bit. I will look into contacting Carter Harris as you advised. Thanks for the help!


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As I thought and EXTEMELY rare, the Museunm has one very similar on display.
Yes Carter can help you.
Regards
adam
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
As I thought and EXTEMELY rare, the Museunm has one very similar on display.
Yes Carter can help you.
Regards
adam
I'm emailing him now. Through some quick research on their website I found catalog number 83.82.1271. I believe this is the piece you were referring to that is very similar. You have been most helpful, thank you again!
 
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