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Pocketwatch identification


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 Gentlemen,

  If you'd be so kind I'd like to request a little help identifying a pocketwatch. It belonged to my late Father who only died recently, I'm in the process of clearing out his shed (or Grandad's man-cave as my kids call it). I found this at the bottom of his toolmakers chest, it has hallmarks on it so I assume at least part of it is silver, I did a bit of Googling and the hallmarks refer to made in England in the Birmingham area I think but I can't seem to find the date stamp in any lists. It does however have some engraving on the inside but Google doesn't help with this either.

Links to images (hopefully working)

https://ibb.co/KDcxPHH
https://ibb.co/566yxZy
https://ibb.co/QP0nWSC
https://ibb.co/SmYPK3P
https://ibb.co/m9h8q95

 I doubt it's of any great value, especially as it's missing functional hands and doesn't appear to wind but I'd be very interested in any info you may be able to provide, my family had several generations that served in the wars but I don't know if this has anything to do with that maybe?

 

   Regards to you all.  Mark.

 

 

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@Oggi I've embedded the photos that help identify it (right click on picture, Copy Image Link, post that.)

There were several Lidstones in Devon, but I think yours is John Frederick Lidstone of Paignton, listed by Brian Loomes as working in 1897-1902. There are other Lidstones in Tavistock and Dartmouth around the same time. Case makers mark looks to me like William Ehrhardt Ltd of Birmingham and London, 1887-1897. You're right the anchor means silver assayed in Birmingham. The date mark seems to be 'r', possibly done with a worn punch, which would be 1891, unless there's some significance of the shape I'm not aware of. Someone else may be able to date it more reliably.

20210426-193850.jpg

 

20210426-193920.jpg

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1 hour ago, Oggi said:

Thank you for your input, that's much older than I'd considered. I'd assumed that mark was a 'B' which might explain my difficulty in finding it.

   Regards.

Now you say that, I was being thrown by a dark patch on the letter. I think it could well be a gothic lower case 'b', which would take the date to 1876. The dates aren't hanging together very well though.

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Just had a closer look now I've found an eyeglass in the toolbox, it is definitely a gothic lower case 'b'. The same 'b' is repeated in the secondary cover that lives within the first (I'm sure you chaps will have a technical term for it) but this 'b' is within an elongated Octagon shape?

Does that give any other clues?

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17 minutes ago, Oggi said:

Just had a closer look now I've found an eyeglass in the toolbox, it is definitely a gothic lower case 'b'. The same 'b' is repeated in the secondary cover that lives within the first (I'm sure you chaps will have a technical term for it) but this 'b' is within an elongated Octagon shape?

Does that give any other clues?

It's a dust cover, I think. :) The only lower case gothic 'b' in Birmingham is 1876. There were variations in the punch shapes, for example I've just discovered "Between 1875 and 1899 shield-shaped punches were used for the anchor town mark and date letter on watch cases", which explains the outer case mark. Also "From 1875 until 1881 the date letter is on a round punch. From 1882 until 1899 date letters in cut-corner rectangular punches are observed as well as the round punches." Note "observed", so that doesn't mean cut corner punches couldn't have been used before that. (http://www.silvercollection.it/englishsilverhallmarksBIR.html)

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Dust cover! seems a perfectly reasonable name for it now you mention it....

The symbol on the rear of the watch case, you wouldn't know if it has any significance? Or is it purely decorative? I only ask as it does look somewhat military (ish), referring back the my original post I was wondering if it had any significance.

Thanks for all your help by the way, much appreciated.

Regards.

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30 minutes ago, Oggi said:

Dust cover! seems a perfectly reasonable name for it now you mention it....

The symbol on the rear of the watch case, you wouldn't know if it has any significance? Or is it purely decorative? I only ask as it does look somewhat military (ish), referring back the my original post I was wondering if it had any significance.

Thanks for all your help by the way, much appreciated.

Regards.

Most pocket watches had some kind of decoration like that. Sometimes the owner would have a monogram engraved inside it. No military significance I'm afraid. No problem with the help, I learn from it too. I just hope I'm not wildly wrong. :) Though I think if I was that wrong someone else would have pointed it out by now.

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Dust cover! seems a perfectly reasonable name for it now you mention it....

The symbol on the rear of the watch case, you wouldn't know if it has any significance? Or is it purely decorative? I only ask as it does look somewhat military (ish), referring back the my original post I was wondering if it had any significance.

Thanks for all your help by the way, much appreciated.

Regards.

That's great, at least I know I'm not dealing with some forgotton family heirloom.

Thanks once again.

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