A new era of American watchmaking

Watch brands with roots in North America
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A new era of American watchmaking

Post by koimaster » June 21st 2019, 9:31am

A century ago, America was a major player in the watch industry, yet despite being one of the first countries to spearhead new technologies, it could not keep up through the shift from pocket watches to wristwatches. However, in the past twenty-five years, there has been a resurgence in the U.S. that might just mark a new era of American watchmaking.

When you reflect on leaders in modern watchmaking, you might immediately think of Switzerland. Next, you might look to Germany, England, France, or maybe even Asia. The chances that you might consider America as an option are slim. However, at one time the United States was a major player in the watch industry. In fact some might argue that in the nineteenth century, the American watch industry was stronger than the Swiss. For instance, watchmakers in the U.S. were among the first to succeed at mass production. But this was all a century ago.

In the 1940s, American watch companies started to consolidate while manufacturers in Switzerland were modernizing their designs and techniques. For decades, the American watch industry faded into the background. However, in the past twenty-five years, things have begun to shift. New blood has started to emerge in the U.S. industry, and these manufacturers have their sights on returning American watchmaking to its former glory.
A brief history

In the early days of watchmaking, each component was painstakingly constructed and assembled at the hands of a skilled artisan. During this period, watches were reserved for members of high society - those who could afford the cost of bespoke pieces. When the Industrial Revolution came in the mid-eighteenth century, a number of manufacturers struggled with the mechanization of the art form. They clung to tradition and questioned the quality of watches that were not handmade. But these watchmakers were not in America.

https://journal.hautehorlogerie.org/en/ ... tchmaking/
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