One challenge we frequently face when compiling information about the New York Watch Company production is the early 4,001-4,700 serial block.
Not only is this block filled with various private label movements, but some of the movements are not even marked with a serial number on the top plate. Investigations of the internal components of these movements reveal they are members of this peculiar serial block.
Additionally, some movements are curiously only marked with a serial number, with no other engravings to identify a manufacturer or retailer.
The movements from this block are consistent with characteristics of the standard “Homer Foot” grade, featuring 15 Jewels. A small batch of movements marked “Homer Foot” is embedded in this block as well, supporting this conclusion (#4570 Verified as “Homer Foot”).
Movements marked “New York Watch Co.” and “New York” are dispersed within this block as well, possibly classified by the company as the “No. 4” grade paired with the named “Homer Foot” in the Richard Oliver & Balen advertisement below.
Interestingly, no surviving examples of the “heavily nickelized” No. 5 grade listed in the advertisement have been found to date, but it is possible these movements were also designated for this serial block.
Unfortunately, we may never know the driving forces behind this curious block of early movements, and the inconsistent serial marking makes data collection difficult.
If you have any movements that belong to this intriguing serial block, please consider contributing images to advance this research.