Private Label Trade Names on American Pocket Watches: “Burlington Watch Co.” Part 46: The Grade 37 Burlington Special Ladies’ Watch
Early in the development and introduction of the “Burlington Special,” the Burlington Watch Company offered a ladies’ watch in addition to their flagship 16-Size model. While not always advertised in newspapers, this option appeared as early as the first Burlington Watch Company catalog, published c.1909.
Based on the 0-Size Grade 37 from the Illinois Watch Company factory, these watches featured seventeen jewels and were offered in both hunting and open face configurations.
The dial originally featured whimsical hour figures with curly flourishes, a design familiar in style to the standard 16-Size “Burlington Special” watches.
Typical to watches offered in the ladies’ market, these smaller “Burlington Special” watches were a step down in quality from the more prominent watches in the Burlington line. The c.1911 Burlington Watch Company catalog draws attention to the fact that their 0-Size watches were unadjusted:
“Such small size watches are not advantageous adjusted in the manner described on the preceding pages, and neither is such adjustment considered necessary to a ladies’ watch.”c.1911 Burlington Watch Company Catalog
Interestingly, this appears to contradict the statement previously published on the same page, claiming that “no expense has been spared to make the Burlington Special watch for ladies the best and most beautiful watch in the world.” Despite the inconsistency, the 0-Size Burlington Special was decisively better than most watches offered in the ladies’ market at the time.
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