Waltham watches are becoming increasingly popular among collectors and watch lovers. These watches are renowned for their perfect design and craftsmanship, and they can be a profitable investment.
Some of these watch pieces’ market value has risen dramatically, so if you have one, remember to check its worth. You may discover it to be more valuable than you expected, especially if it is in perfect condition.
If you’re trying to buy an antique watch, our value guide on the 15 most valuable Waltham pocket watches will be useful.
Brief History: American Waltham Watch Company
The American Waltham Watch Company was founded in Roxbury, Massachusetts, in 1850. The firm was founded by David Davis, Edward Howard, and Aaron Dennison.
Their goal was to establish a watch company capable of producing high-quality watches at a lower cost by employing interchangeable parts.
Watch production began in 1851, with financial assistance from Samuel Curtis of small-arms manufacturing fame, and the first modest batch of clocks was finished in late 1852.
The first watches were designed for business executives and were not available to the general public until 1853.
The new manufacturing techniques caused difficulties. The company was experimenting with new watchmaking concepts, such as building enamel dials, using jewels, and creating high-quality plates, which required expensive tooling and resulted in a substantial financial strain.
They also realized that, despite the use of replacement components, each watch was distinct and had its own set of defects that had to be solved.
It took months to fine-tune the watches to the point where they could compete with other readily accessible timepieces.
The company building was finished in 1853, and the company became public under the name “American Horologe Company.”
In September 1853, the name was changed to “Boston Watch Company,” and the factory in Waltham, Massachusetts was completed in October 1854.
Over the next few decades, the corporation went through a succession of financial reorganizations and renamings. The Boston Watch Company went bankrupt in 1857 and was auctioned off to Royal E. Robbins.
It was reformed as “Tracy, Baker & Co.” and after that year the name was changed to “Appleton, Tracy, and Co.” Watches 5001 – 14,000 were manufactured.
The first motions were marked by Appleton, Tracy, and Co. The C. T. Parker movement was relaunched as the model 1857 and sold for $12, which was a lot of money back then!
1. Antique 1865 18K Solid Yellow Gold Full Hunter Case P.S. Bartlett Waltham Pocket Watch
Description: Outstanding antique detailed 18k solid yellow gold complete hunter case pocket watch created by “S & Co.” The watch works properly. It contains two winding keys and a vintage-style retail box. RARE FOUNDATION. This watch is a survivor from more than 150 years ago and is in fantastic shape. This is a fantastic item and gift idea for any special occasion.
This is most likely one of the most expensive Waltham pocket watches available. Although it was produced before 1891 and has just 15 gems, its craftsmanship is of the highest caliber, especially given its age and era.
It is featured in an 18K solid yellow Double Hunter gold case with a solid gold dust cover.
This makes it heavy, durable, and highly valuable. The movement is a Crescent Street Grade 18 with a lever-pin-nail set. The dial is the distinctive porcelain white that Waltham watches are known for.
A unique treasure that would complement any antique pocket watch collection and is recommended for anybody wishing to invest in great treasures of American history.
2. American Waltham 17 Jewel Model 1883 Pocket Watch Dated 1917
Description: This recently repaired American Waltham pocket watch would make a wonderful gift for any connoisseur of fine timepieces. This great working watch was made in 1917 and has many years of service remaining in it.
One of the earliest timepieces created after 1881, although with somewhat different characteristics.
Unlike the majority of Railroad grade watches made to the new standard, which have white dials, this unique edition has a colorful display.
It also lacks the normal jewelry lever set seen on subsequent versions. There are just 17 jewelers that require a special form of correction.
Nonetheless, the magnitude of 18 is intimidating. The thick crystal enhances the functioning of this clock by protecting the movement and dial.
3. Waltham CRESCENT ST 16s 21j Up/Down Wind Indicator Antique Pocket Watch
Description: Waltham 21 Jewel Cresent Street Up / Down Indicator Antique Pocket Watch ca 1915. In running condition. Could use a cleaning and a tune-up.
This amazing vintage Waltham pocket watch is also one of the most creative versions. It was made after 1914 and is an unusual find from that era, especially given its high-quality gold case and the 21 gems housed in the mechanism.
However, this became a standard for all Crescent Street Railroad grade models long before this clock was produced.
This implies that the company simply needed to make a few minor changes to the movement. One of these was the installation of an up-and-down wind indication and innovation aimed at improving train services.
The triple-sunk porcelain dial and strengthened crystal are simply the crowns on the elevated gold setting. Furthermore, the watch has a stem wind, and lever set, and can be changed, which adds to its appeal.
4. Waltham A.W. Co. 8s 11j Pocket Watch Nature Themed Engraved 14k Gold Hunter Case
Description: A high-quality vintage pocket watch produced in the United States. For its age, the 14k gold case is in good shape. The front and back covers have some small scuffs that are consistent with normal wear. The action winds set and run smoothly while maintaining the exact time.
With the gorgeous train carved into its 14k yellow gold case, this pocket watch is also a one-of-a-kind treasure.
It was created in 1898 and is one of the first Waltham Watches of the new generation. This 1893 watch features an SOL-grade mechanism with a gilded finish, a pendant setting, and an open-face design.
When the Breguet hairspring, 11 diamonds, and the massive 18 frame size are combined, you get a highly functional watch in elegant historical packaging.
This open-face pocket watch might still appreciate if consistently fixed and maintained in working condition, as it did in prior decades. As a result, it is an outstanding investment.
5. 14K Yellow Gold Waltham 23 Jewel Mechanical Wind Up Vintage Pocket Watch
Description: Despite having been previously owned, this item has been examined, cleaned, and polished to remove any traces of wear. This item comes in a brand-new box.
This Waltham pocket watch is a real classic, with its mechanical movement, 14K yellow gold open face clasp, and dial with Arabic numerals. However, the 23 gems in the setting make this watch far more powerful than it appears.
Furthermore, because of its simple design, white dial, and unisex qualities, it can suit any style. And the strong snapping case back will keep the movement safe in any condition.
If properly cared for, the watch may be a useful addition to your collection as well as a profitable investment in the future.
6. TIFFANY & CO / 18K / Gold / Pocket watch / Manual winding / 1920 ’s / Vintage
Description: TIFFANY and CO, 18K Gold, Pocket watch, Manual winding / 1920 ’s Vintage Tiffany and Co Case Diameter: 27mm Movement: Manual winding Material: Solid 18K Gold Small dust particles within the windshield and at 4 o’clock on the dial It’s making its way in. It is possible to remove it by removing the windshield.
This watch has the names of both its donors and is a remarkable testament to the teamwork of a watchmaker and America’s largest luxury jewelry shop.
The traditional white dial, as well as the mechanical movement, are signed by Waltham, and the rear of the 18K solid gold case has the Tiffany and Co logo.
The Tiffany & Co pattern is also etched on the front of the dust cover, making it a utilitarian yet attractive timepiece.
It is undeniably smaller than other Waltham pocket watches in the same series, but this allows it to be a unisex model.
7. E18 Fantastic 1909 14k Solid Gold Waltham Hunting Antique Pocket Watch
Description: Beautiful model 1907 grade 165 15j movement is running strong and keeping good time. E18 fantastic 1909 14k solid gold Waltham hunting antique pocket watch
This is a beautiful 14k solid gold antique Waltham pocket watch in excellent condition!
The case is extra fancy, crisp, and unpolished. This beautiful watch is running extremely well and keeping time.
It is near-perfect without wear, dings, dents, or scratches! 113 years old and still appearing amazing!
This dial has a gold star accent, sky blue Arabic hour markers, and an outer gold dot track for “60 minutes!” a small chip repair is between numbers 3 and 4.
The case is certified to be 14k solid gold and is signed “warranted 14k b.w.c.co.” the front cover pops open with a push of the crown, excellent lift spring.
All three covers have excellent hinges. The case has fancy stars and amazing gold work of roses, floral designs on one side that go from smooth to texture on the other.
8. Vintage Waltham Yellow Gold Ladies Pendant Watch
Description: Vintage Waltham 14k yellow gold ladies pendant watch with manual winding.
Ladies Waltham 14k Yellow Gold Pendant Watch – Manual Winding Case made of 14k yellow gold both the front and back are ornately etched (34mm diameter).
The dial is enamel with a sub-seconds dial. It has Arabic numerals in black. It’s a pre-owned antique pendant timepiece that is quite popular as a pendant on a chain necklace.
9. Waltham Colonial R Open Face 14k Yellow Gold Vintage Pocket Watch Size 12
Description: The piece appears to be in good condition. The dial is in fantastic condition, with a wonderful original patina.
This is a working Waltham 16 size 23 jewel Vanguard open-face pocket watch. Even if it is operational, it may require cleaning and servicing before use.
It is a Vanguard lever movement. The body, front, and rear cover of the J. Boss 10 K Gold-filled Keystone Watch Case are brassed.
There are also minor dents, scrapes, and discoloration. Scuffs and scratches are visible on the crystal. Damage, hairlines, and yellowing can be found on the dial.
The hands are attractive. Both covers are screw-on and screw-off. The serial number is 11077096, and it was made in about 1901.
The casing is around 2″ in diameter without the crown or bow.
10. Railroad Waltham Grade 645, 21 Jewel pocket watch. 1918
Description: Waltham Grade 645 pocket watch with 21 jewels. 1918
Waltham grade 645 railroad 21 diamond Size 16 in a Balco gold-filled swing case.
This is 21 Jewels Railroad Waltham 645 in a swing-out Balco gold-filled case, size 16. The watch has just been serviced and is fully operational.
The dial is triple sunk and has large numerals and minute counters. It features two small hairlines, one at 9 a.m. and another at 6 a.m.
The hands are large and in good condition, with only a small blue hew variation between the hour and minute.
The case is in good shape, although there is some brass on the edge and bezel. Due to the high amount of grit and dust in the train business, railroad personnel frequently wore watch casings.
This one reveals that it remained in use for a long time since the casing is still in good form and extremely usable. The plastic crystal of the watch is in good shape.
11. Waltham 21-Jewel Pocket Watch, 1900’s Vintage Jewelry
Description: Waltham 21-Jewel Pocket Watch, 1900s Vintage Jewelry
A vintage Waltham pocket watch with a hand-engraved gold-filled case. A 21-jewel railroad grade model. Produced in 1907.
The watch works properly; it winds, sets, and runs. It is a 16S size with a diameter of roughly 51 mm around the exterior of the case.
12. Waltham White Gold Filled Pocket Watch
Description: Waltham White Gold Filled Pocket Watch
The piece is a 17-jewel 14k white gold-filled Waltham pocket watch. The watch serial number is 24192723, indicating that it was manufactured in 1922. A W W Co Waltham USA is stamped on the plate on the inside of the watch.
The watch is working well. Frances T Walter 12-25-27 is etched on the inside of the case back. There are also many little engravings indicating the watchmaker and previous repair dates.
One of these marks is made using a magic marker. Inside the cover back is marked Elgin Giant Watch Case Co. Gold Filled 14k Double Stock Pride 5764112.
13. Antique Solid 14K Yellow Gold Waltham Wind Up Watch
Description: Antique Solid 14K Yellow Gold Waltham Wind Up Watch Attached 10K Yellow Gold Seed Pearl Brooch/Pin Nurses Watch Pocket Watch Hunters Watch
This beautiful antique solid 14K gold Waltham hanging watch is suspended on a 10K gold seed pearl brooch/pin. The wind-up watch is 26mm round, and the dial is 15mm round.
On the inside, the serial number is 335083. The brooch is 1.5″ across and 4mm broad, with eight seed pearls put on it, all of which are intact.
This watch is in good antique condition, with slight discoloration on the dial, surface scratches, general wear and tear, and a natural antique patina on the gold.
The watch is in working order and keeps accurate time; however, due to its age, it is advised that it be serviced by a watchmaker.
14. Antique Pocket Watch in 14k Gold, the 1800s
Description: Antique Pocket Watch in 14k Gold, 1800’s
Antique Waltham pocket watch in a hunter’s casing made of pure 14k yellow gold. Movement with seven jewels.
The casing is completely hand-engraved on both sides. On the inner flap is an inscription from Bay City, Michigan. The watch was created in 1889.
The watch is in fine working order; winds, sets, and runs. It is a 6S model with a 42 mm diameter to the exterior of the casing. With the movement, it weighs approximately 54.26 grams.
15. Antique Estate Waltham Riverside Pocket Watch
Description: Antique Estate Waltham Riverside Pocket Watch 19 jewels, 12s, Yellow Gold Filled, Circa 1910(WAT10351) Serviced, Accurate, and Running
Antique Waltham Riverside Pocket Watch, about 1910, 19 jewels, 12s, Yellow Gold Filled (WAT10351) Serviced, accurate, and operational
This lovely Pocket Watch was created to be a pocket watch carried by a man or to be worn by a lady. The heartfelt inscription inside the back “In Loving Memory of Aunt Sadie” speaks it all about how much this pocket watch was cherished.
What Is the Value of Waltham Pocket Watches?
While all Waltham watches are valuable, determining their worth can be challenging, especially if you are new to watches. Watch appraisers will examine a variety of elements when determining the value of a specific object.
Some watches are only costly due to their precise mechanism. Others have casings made of high-quality materials, increasing their value.
However, you can accomplish some things on your own. Looking up Waltham pocket watches may only offer you a broad notion of how the prices of these things are currently going on the market.
It’s also a good idea to compare a few goods; some of them may appear identical but have radically different values depending on the materials used in their manufacture.
Unfortunately, looking at photographs and descriptions alone will not help you evaluate the worth of an item.
To achieve this, you would need to hire an expert to analyze it, even if the evaluation is merely an estimate.
Selling And Buying Waltham Pocket Watches
While it should be a simple procedure to sell or purchase a Waltham pocket watch, this isn’t always the case.
The more precious the timepiece, the more cautious you must be to avoid wasting your time and money. The antique market is thriving, but there are a few things to keep in mind.
The best choice is to visit an antique or vintage watch dealer and have them assist you with these collectibles.
Of course, you may use the aforementioned elements to assess the value of the watch you possess or want to acquire. If you already have a Waltham pocket watch that is valuable, you should keep it as an investment.
Waltham pocket watches may also be purchased online, providing a far bigger market to deal with. If you want to purchase or sell your item through an online auction site, you may need to conduct further research on the possible seller or buyer.
Factors Influencing The Value Of A Waltham Pocket Watch
Aside from being a piece of American watchmaking history, various additional elements will influence the price of Waltham pocket watches.
Unlike wristwatches, where the complete timepiece is assessed as a whole, pocket watches analyze the material of the case as a discrete section.
Stainless steel, platinum, and gold casings are typically more valuable. Even if the pocket watch is damaged or broken, it is still valuable if the case and mechanism are constructed of precious metals.
Because of the market value of the stones and diamonds, watches with diamond-set casings have a higher intrinsic worth.
The movement is the second most important factor in assessing the worth of a Waltham pocket watch. The more exact and reliable it is, the more valuable the entire watch will be.
The Number Of Jewels
The term “jewels” refers to the bearings used in watches to decrease friction in the inner mechanism. The bigger the number of jewels used to safeguard the instrument, the higher it’s quality.
As a result, the amount of diamonds used in a watch mechanism influences its price. Some timepieces have only 15 jewels and are considered lower-grade watches.
Others may have 20-25 jewels, which increases the pocket watch’s functionality.
All Waltham pocket watches include a serial number that assists in dating. Collectors looking for artifacts from a specific era may place a higher value on specific clocks.
Examine the serial number on the movement, as this will give you the exact date the clock was made.
This serial number can also be used to obtain any extra information stored in the Waltham Watch Company’s ledgers.
Watches that are preserved in excellent condition are more valuable than those that are not. Even if the clock has a finely tuned mechanism and a high-quality case, its value might drop if it is not well maintained.
Every scratch, dent, or other evidence of wear and tear reduces the value of a Waltham pocket watch.
Investing in cleaning and repair might increase its worth, but only if done by a respected watchmaker with experience in Waltham pocket watches.
Furthermore, adding new pieces will reduce the value, so you’ll want to maintain as many of the original portions as possible.
The rarer a watch is, the higher its value – and this is true for Waltham pocket watches as well. The number of components created from a certain watch that are deemed rare.
Older versions, such as those built before 1900, are generally more costly, as are those that are part of special collections or collaborations.
The value of Waltham pocket watches can also be affected by the status of the economy. People have more money to invest in collectibles when the economy is doing well.
And the more of them there are fighting for a single commodity, the higher the price. During an economic downturn, individuals tend to sell rather than acquire.
As a result, more things will be available on the market, and their prices will fall.
The easiest way to evaluate the value of a Waltham pocket watch is to have it appraised. A qualified watch valuer or Waltham pocket watch specialist can give you all the knowledge you need regarding individual pieces, whether you want to add a Waltham watch to your collection or you already have one.
If you want to buy one, it’s also a good idea to conduct some research on the seller before finalizing the transaction to avoid the risks of buying an antique clock.
This ensures that you are acquiring an authentic piece of American history!