1909 Burlington Special Grade 185 19j – Vortic Watch Co
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1909 Burlington Special Grade 185 19j



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The Burlington Watch Company existed as a mail-order sales company, and its watches were actually manufactured by the Illinois Watch Company. By selling direct to consumer, Burlington was able to eliminate the cost of distribution channels and offer premium watches for a lower price than the competition. Burlington started building and selling watches in 1909, so this particular watch is one of Burlington's first models ever made.
 
While having nearly all required features of railroad grade watches, this movement did not meet all qualifications for standard watches like Burlington's later 21 jewel models. However, given the exceptional beauty and character of this watch it has been included in the Railroad Edition watch builder.
 
This watch features a gorgeous damascened wave pattern that aligns with straight Geneva stripes, a 3/4 plate design and 3-finger bridge, circular graining on the main plate, 19 precision cut ruby and sapphire jewels, gold jewel settings, a fully gold gear train, gold gilt lettering and gilt decoration on the balance bridge, a Columbus whipspring regulator, and adjustment for temperature, positions, and isochronism.
 
The beautiful, original, double sunk, white enamel dial is marked 'Burlington Special' and has a red 5-minute track in the outer margin. The blued steel hands point to intriguing, black, Arabic numerals with intricate swirls replacing traditional serifs. While most of the dial is in mint condition, there are several large chips in the bottom portion of the dial that will be partially hidden by the watch bezel. This movement is one of 24,270 grade 185 watches ever made.
 
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