Vintage Hamilton diamond cocktail watch from the 1950’s.
A brief history about the Hamilton watch company:
Producing their first watch in 1893, this American watch company lasted until 1969 when it merged with the Swatch group. In a quirky turn of events, the Hamilton name was originally to be called Columbian, but it was discovered the Waterbury Watch Company had trademarked that name, so a meeting of stock holders was called in for a new name to be chosen. The company was named after Andrew Hamilton, a Scottish born attorney who laid out and founded Lancaster, and was the original owner of the Lancaster site on which the factory was situated.
During the expansion of the railroads in the U.S., Hamilton maintained over 56% of the market. Railroads purchased all of Hamilton’s production. As the market switched from pocket watches to wrist watches after World War I, the company manufactured wrist watches. During World War II, Hamilton stopped production of watches for consumers to concentrate on the huge task of providing the forces with a total of one million timepieces.
The Hamilton marine chronometers developed in the 1940s were the first to be created by modern manufacturing. Chronometers were vital naval equipment for calculating longitude and plotting location and direction and were used by the US Navy as an alternative to radio to find position. They represented vital military equipment, since radio time signals could be intercepted and falsified by the enemy.
During the course of the war Hamilton produced 10,902 marine chronometers that met the toughest demands for accuracy and reliability, as the only company with the capability to provide this support, managing to develop and produce these in a little over a year. The company‚Äôs efforts were rewarded in 1943 with a US Army-Navy ‚ÄúE‚ÄĚ Award, presented for excellence in production of military equipment.
During World War II, Hamilton retooled its business model to serve the military, dropping its consumer products.
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