The Agassiz Watch Company was established in 1876 by Georges Agassiz, however it was Georges father, Auguste who first established a watch dealership that was the catalyst for the company to be set up.
The Company is always associated with another great name in horology circles; Longines, and Georges was earlier involved in the running of the Longines project as their finance and marketing manager, about ten years prior to him setting up alone and operating as the "Agassiz Watch Company". Do not be surprised if you happen to come across a watch with "Agassiz-Longines" on the face, as these were produced at times throughout the company's lifespan.
Always a man of high standards, Georges set up his company with a vision to create timepieces that would be world famous for their quality of manufacture and precision. Right from the start it was decided that they would make whole watches and not use cheap imported watch cases for any of their movements.
A breakthrough for Georges came in 1889, when the company was awarded a special award in recognition of the quality of its movements at the World Exhibition of Watches held in Paris. The award of the prestigious Gold Medal for its contribution to the world of horology confirmed Agassiz as a major world player in quality watch manufacture.
After twenty years behind the helm, he handed over the running of the business to Auguste Sandoz. This change led to a wider range of Agassiz watches being developed, with the use of precious stones and high quality jewelery work being done on cases and dials. Complicated movements were also developed and housed in ultra-thin cases, a major development for the time that made their watches more attractive, wearable and importantly kept the company visible to a worldwide watch buying public.
In the early to mid 1900s, the Company established a reputation as a supplier of high-grade repeater pocket watch movements, chronometers and great looking, almost military style watches. They also branched out into making clocks, with some fine 8-Day movements.
For the collector, Agassiz watches are very affordable, even though they appear to be quite rare when compared with some other watch brands. If you are short on funds, this should be one manufacturer that you take a look at. Fine quality and good looks would make this a great addition to any fine watch collection.
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