Pocket Watch

An image of a gold watch. It has a gold paper face and small hands.
Watch from the Eldon House collection

Country of Origin: Unknown 
Year: ca. 1880 
Materials: Metal and paper  

Pocket watches were a staple of a men’s fashion since the 17th century and were meant to attach to a chain that would be hooked onto a waistcoat. Prior to 1820, pocket watches would not always run true, thus it was important to calibrate a watch regularly. This could be done using either a sundial or a telescope. The ability to accurately set the time was important in determining longitude. Time could be determined by noting the moment at which moons passed behind or in front of Jupiter. A watch could then be set to when that celestial event was known to happen, which could be looked up in a table. 

This watch is an open face one, where there is no metal overtop to protect the face.