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Slide 22: Who Made These Watches?
James Russell & Co., Hartford Conn. 

  • This one has me stumped. I am currently aware of five James Russell watches that appear to be custom/private label Model 57s, Circa 1860s. I made an attempt to identify the M57 grade and serial number range, but to no avail.
  • Each movement has something inconsistent with a M57, but everything else looks correct. Indeed, they look like some watchmaker made the movements from M57 parts.
  • The train speed of these Russells is the Model 57 speed of 16,200 beats per hour, not the earlier English speed of 14,400. Also, we have not yet heard of a James Russell in Hartford, CT.
  • I was thinking the Russells had an English origin, but our English friends (e.g., Philip Priestley and David Penney ) think they are American built or with American machinery. There actually might be a Waltham connection. The dials on some of the Russells (see #145 below) look just like the dial on an early AT&Co grade M57 #6429, possibly made by Moorhouse.