Railroad Regulator Pocket Watch

by William Courtier
(Norfolk, VA)

Railroad Regulator Movement

Railroad Regulator Movement

Railroad Regulator Movement Railroad Regulator Dial Railroad Rgulator Case

Is this a Railroad Regulator Pocket Watch.


My grandfather gave me a pocket watch when I was only 12 years old. He had very little history on the watch, other than he had owned it for quite some time. He said that it is a railroad regulator's pocket watch. He also said they had an incredible reputation for being very accurate and that they were kind of rare. He knew nothing else. He grew up and lived mostly in the states of Missouri and Iowa, with a short residence in Minnesota. He was always trading and bartering, yet never was willing to part with this item due to his desire to pass it down the family.

So, here I am. My grandfather passed away almost 5 years ago, and I am now trying to identify this watch. I am now 25, and have no interest in selling the watch. I am just trying to identify it and figure out what the value of it in case I need to purchase special insurance for it.

The watch is pretty large, and is quite heavy. I did have it reworked about 10 years ago, and had it operating perfectly. The man I had repair it offered me $1,000 for it back then, and said that he would be purchasing it specifically to resell and make money. The watch is all original, with the exception of the minute hand (replaced since the original was broken, although incredibly close to original). The watch has since been wound too tight by my cousin, and it will only run for 6-8 hours at a time right now. I know that I need it repaired, but have been in the US Navy for the last 6.5 years and have yet to get it taken to a shop again.

The watch has no particular identifying marks that tell me a manufacturer. On the inside of the back, it does have an insignia which says "RAIL ROAD REGULATOR" with a steam engine in the center. Below that appears to be a serial number, which appears to have been hand punched into the casing. It has the following numbers: 6 2 8 0 0 or 6 2 8 8 0 (the second to last number is difficult to read). The watch has an adjustable speed, and has another insignia on the backing plate to the mechanics stating "Registered Trademark" with a single star in the center and banners on either side. One interesting point about this watch is that the watch is set by pressing in on a raised button on the upper-right hand side of the watch as looking from the front.

I have still never found another copy of this watch. I can not figure out the manufacturer, where it came from, or the history. I am just interested in figuring out anything I can about this watch.

Please help me identify my watch! Any and all help will be greatly appreciated. If you can help me, or would like more information, please respond here. Thank you very much!

Comments for Railroad Regulator Pocket Watch

Average Rating starstarstarstarstar

Click here to add your own comments

Dec 23, 2014
Rating
starstarstarstarstar
Railroad Regulator
by: Greg F.

Just did another look at your watch and my case is identical to yours. The inner workings are somewhat like yours except mine is more visible to the gears.

No other markings at all, no numbers, nothing. I had it serviced, a screw that holds the crown shaft broke and had to be replaced. It was cleaned but at times will quit running on me if I turn it over. The watchsmith told me it was Swiss movements and that parts for these watches were usually hard to come by so I should just sell it but I doubt I'd get what I have in it so reckon I'll just keep it. Still trying to find a value on it, though. Tally Ho!

Aug 31, 2014
Rating
starstarstarstarstar
Watch is being repaired right now!
by: Will Courtier

My watch is being repaired by the gentleman that I listed in the last comment, and he is utilizing a huge group of pocket watch enthusiasts to correctly identify the watch. I'm expecting a final verdict by the time I get the watch back, which should be late next month. I'll let you guys know when I figure it out!

~Will Courtier~

Aug 31, 2014
Rating
starstarstarstarstar
Railroad Regulator Pocket Watch
by: Greg Farnsworth

I recently purchased a similar watch from someone who also got it from his grandfather. On the back is stamped Railroad Regulator, printed in a circle with a steam engine in the middle. No other markings.

Under the back cover is a clear glass "dust or display" cover which seals the inner workings.
It runs and there's a visible arm with moves back and forth with the movement of the second hand. It's about an 18 size watch and also has the pin set for moving the hands.

I've searched the web but so far haven't found anything until I found your post here.

If you have any other info I would love to have some leads that might help steer me in the right direction on finding out what I have.

Thanks,
Greg

Jun 03, 2014
Rating
starstarstarstarstar
I have an update!
by: Will Courtier

I finally got in touch with a small business that worked on my watch almost 20 years ago when I was a child. The business was run by an old man (Harold Zimmerman), who was a master clockmaker. He has since passed away, but turned the business over to his son (who was trained for over 40 years by his father and is also a master clockmaker). As soon as I told him that his father worked on the watch (and wanted to purchase it from me), he wanted some photos. He informed me that my watch doesn't appear to be a Hamilton to him. Hamilton watch movements weren't made until late 1800's, whereas this watch appears to be built between 1860-1870. He believes the watch is an old Sagna Swiss watch. He offered to repair and get it working free of charge, just for having the opportunity to work on such a cool watch. He just asked me to pay shipping. I have had ties to his family for over 20 years, so I trust them. He said that he will give me a better idea of what it is as soon as he gets the watch. Stand by for another update!

Nov 21, 2012
Rating
starstarstarstarstar
Anutrof Regulator
by: bob

I also came by my watch from my Swiss father-in-law. He lived in Bern and worked for the railroad. It is missing the hour and minute hands. There is an engraving of a old early 19th century steam operated RR-engine on the back of the watch and I assume the watch is early 20th Century. Just took a chance to google this item...wow..is google a cool tool or what..I was really surprised to find there is so much interest in these watches out there. Maybe we should start a club..The "Anutrof Regulators" which Sounds like a Teutonic Militia group..so maybe not.

May 06, 2012
Rating
starstarstarstarstar
I have a similar watch, but no name on face....
by: ahendrix

I also have come across a similar pocket watch. with the rail road regulator and train stamped in the back casing, mine has a 5 digit number below and a 2 digit number above the logo stamp. The puzzle I am facing, is that there is no name or logo on the face-plate, which appears to be white, enamel or ceramic with blue numbers in the hour/minute circle and black numbers in the second-hand circle. I do not know where my late-step-father came across it or any of its history. The inner mechanics are similar to the initiating post pic, but slightly different,although they look like the same manufacturer's work, just a different model of clock-work. Any help/info would be appreciated.

Feb 27, 2012
Rating
starstarstarstarstar
Anutrof regulator railroad pocket watch
by: Anonymous

I also have one which was given to me by my Grandfather in Switzerland

Jan 04, 2012
Rating
starstarstarstarstar
Railway regulator
by: Anonymous

Hi Oz, I also have a railway regulator pocket watch. It was given to me by my Gandfather who worked on the railway in North Fremantle. Have you any other info?

Dec 12, 2011
Rating
starstarstarstarstar
Maybe?
by: Tex Rider

I just found out that mine was a private labeled Hamilton watch. Yours appears to be a Hamilton brand as well.

Dec 12, 2011
Rating
starstarstarstarstar
Interesting
by: Tex Rider

It's interesting because I have been trying to find out more about my watch as well. Your watch is identical to mine inside and out. I know that the "Faces" were often changed by watch repair men because of discoloration and scratching from the hands being out of adjustment. The face on mine reads "Venmore" but the internal markings appear to be identical to yours. I am fortunate that I live near an avid watch collector/sales/repairman mine was fully serviced by him and works flawlessly.

He told me that a lot of watches were made for railroad contract by smaller shops or companies, and this may be one of them. I paid $295 for mine in perfect running condition, the only flaw is a ding in the back of the case that appears as if the watch was dropped. I'm doing further research because I'm trying to sell mine, so If I find out more, I will try to help you by posting, ASAP.
:O)

Nov 03, 2011
Rating
starstarstarstarstar
Similar Watch from Perth, Western Australia
by: oz tan

Hey guys and/or girls...

I have the same watch as shown on the pictures.
The only difference is that there is an engravement in the front top center of the watch which says:
LEVINSON & SONS
PERTH W.A.
Maybe this might help you! If you find out further information, I'd be pleased to hear from you!

Aug 06, 2011
Rating
starstarstarstarstar
Very little info thus far!
by: Will Courtier

I am still waiting patiently for someone to give me some more info. If I find out anything, I will let you know!

May 01, 2011
Rating
starstarstarstarstar
Need more information about the watch
by: DD

I have an identical watch (exception serial numbers). Can you share what you have learned in your research about this watch. I appreciate your help.

Click here to add your own comments

Return to Invitation 1.