Oldest Longines Watch FoundWritten by Melissa Kong
A major blast from the past.
In an extraordinary revelation, Longines has found the oldest watch made by the brand to date, thanks to one of its collectors.
Left to right: Stéphanie Lachat, International PR, Heritage and Digital Manager, Walter von Känel, President of Longines, Seiji K., Longines watch collector and owner of the watch number 183, and Juan-Carlos Capelli, Vice President of Longines and Head of International Marketing
Seiji K, an American of Japanese descent, was invited by Longines to authenticate his pocket watch at the company’s headquarters in Saint-Imier, where the brand’s historians and watchmakers affirmed the provenance of the piece.
Inside the oldest Longines watch discovered
Comparing the serial number, 183, and indications found in the archival registers, staff at the headquarters were able to determine the pocket watch was produced in 1867, the same year the Longines factory was built, replacing the original from 1832.
The hunter-style or savonette pocket watch features a manual-winding movement and is typical of the sort of watches Longines produced back in the day. Inside the cover and on the movement is a winged hourglass—the brand’s insignia—while the cover is decorated with two blank crests and a floral motif.
Left to right: Walter von Känel, President of Longines, Seiji K., Longines watch collector and owner of the watch number 183, and Juan-Carlos Capelli, Vice President of Longines and Head of International Marketing
In today’s climate of incessant vintage resissues, it’s refreshing to see an actual vintage model of significance surface to get the watch community excited again.
Like most people these days, Melissa tells the time with her phone. She considers serious timepieces works of art and thinks the perpetual calendar is the handiest complication to date (pun not intended). She's also a Grammar Nazi but promises not to judge if you can't tell the difference between "guilloche" and "guillotine".