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Sergei Filatov
Sergei Filatov

Elgin Pocket Watch Identification By Serial Number


  • Elgin DatabasesMain PageSerial Number LookupSN Lookup ExampleSearch Ebay LogsElgin NamesPrivate Label NamesWatch CodesMainspring InformationAdjustment NumbersGrade NumbersRaw SN Year InfoElgin Database VerificationPW_elgin Program ElginMain PageWatch HelpDocuments & PicturesElgin DatabasesHistoryTechnicalLinksOld NewsCredits Wayne's ProjectsMain PageSPF email anti-forgeryElgin Watch CompanyNTP scriptsXStarBidwatcher Online Elgin Serial Number DatabaseYES!Movement serial numberNO!Case serial number The Online Database for the Elgin Watch Company can tell you a great deal of information about your watch, based on just the serial number off the movement. (The "movement" is also sometimes called the "watch works".) Serial Number off the movement: Important!The serial number must be off the movement of the watch (where the gears are), not off the case. These two serial numbers are unrelated. For more information see the Watch Serial Number web page.

  • You must give the letter prefix of the serial number, if there is one.

  • If you don't have an exact Serial Number, you can use many other Search Options. There is a lot of flexibility here.

  • There is an example with explanations that goes over every part of the search results. The Watch Codes are similar ones are used by many experienced watch collectors. Also the names that are marked on the movement have been abbreviated.

  • If you have a quartz watch, one that uses a battery, one with alogo, instead of the name "Elgin" on the dial, or anythingmade after around 1965, then you are pretty much out of luck. I havezero information about these newer watches. For a longer explanation,see my Newer Elgins webpage.

  • If you have a wrist watch, and the only number on the movement is a three digit number in the range of 500-999, then there is no serial number. You may be able to get some limited information by entering the query"g=" (where is replaced with the 3 digitnumber)

  • This database is the most complete and accurate records of Elgin watches that I know of. That said, I know of errors in it, and I know that it isn't complete. If there are any discrepancies, verify the serial number. If the serial number is correct please let me know about the problem by emailing me.

How to Open a Watch Case While opening a watch isn't rocket science, a watch can be damaged if you try to open it incorrectly. Never use a screwdriver to try to open a case. I find using my finger nail to be quite effective and it is soft enough to not scratch a watch case. If you really aren't sure what to do, take it to one of your local jewelers and ask them to show you how to open it. While it is open, make sure you record everything written on the movement of the watch and the watch case. These details can sometimes be important. Kent Singer has written up a good explanation of how to open a watch case. Chris Ozdoba has also written up a good explanation of how to open a watch case. Chris' explanation isn't as detailed as Kent's, but it includes pictures which can be very helpful. Elgin Watch NewsIf you visit this website frequently, you may be interested in some ofthe things that have changed recently.Changing ISPs30 Mar 2005 Sometime in the next week or so, I will be moving my website from one ISP to another. In theory, this should all be transparent to everyone and there should be zero downtime. If things don't go well, you might have problems connecting for a while, but rest assured that I'll try and fix any problems ASAP.




elgin pocket watch identification by serial number



Please use the following tables to help determine the approximate age of your watch. Remove or open the back cover from your watch and look for a number engraved into the movement; this is the serial number for your watch, and by using it, you can find the closest years it was made on these tables. Please note there is a difference between the number marked on the movement and the one marked on the case. These tables are only accurate for the movement serial numbers.


As high-valued historical pieces, antique Elgin Pocket Watches risk counterfeiting, and you need to learn the signs of genuine ones. Identifying antique pieces is a learned art, and you can start your lesson here. Every little detail on a pocket watchpoints to its production era.


For instance, the 18K gold-plated watches cost a premium at a $500 starting bid, slightly more than the 14K model. Standard antique Elgin pocket watch models retail at affordable prices less than $100.


The National Watch Company, later known as the Elgin National Watch Company, was founded at the end of the Civil War, in 1864, in Elgin, Illinois. The company's first model was a large, 18 size, movement priced at $117, which was a high price for that time. Between 1867 and sometime in the 1960s when domestic manufacturing tappered off, Elgin made 10s of millions of pocket and wrist watches. The Elgin National Watch Company went completely out of business in 1968. Even though it had been, for a time, one of the largest industrial concerns in the world, today many people have no idea that America was once the world leader in quality timepieces.


Using this site you can learn a good deal about your antique Elgin timepiece. The serial number on the watch works, called the 'movement', can be used to look up production information on watches made by the Elgin National Watch Company. Note that the numbers on any part of the watch case, such as a serial number on the inside of the back cover, is a number that goes with the watch case only, and reveals nothing about the watch movement. Elgin did not make pocketwatch cases. The watches were sold as bare movements only. Customers selected their watch cases separately at the retail shop, so the important number is inside on the mechanical part of the watch. Enter your watch movement's serial number and click 'Search' to lookup the watch.


Elgin watch serial numbers begin with their earliest watch, number 101, a B. W. Raymond model made in 1867, and range up to just over 50,000,000. Some later serial numbers begin with a single letter. If you have one of these, check here for more information. In the later years, Elgin sold imported movements, mostly Swiss. Many of these are not marked with a serial number and so less can be said about those individual pieces. Some later grade without a serial number are marked with a grade number though. If you know the grade of your watch, look it up here!


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