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Watchmaking, the American System of Manufacturing and Mass Production

By Richard Watkins

2020, 145 pages, ill

This monograph is a detailed study of the application of the American System of Manufacturing to watchmaking. It examines the work of Japy, Ingold, the Pitkin brothers, Dennison and Howard (the Boston Watch Company), and Royal Robins and Ambrose Webster (the American Watch Company).

The main aim is to examine the history of watchmaking in Roxbury and Waltham from 1850 to 1858. I suggest an alternative definition of the American System of Manufacturing and show how it was applied to watchmaking by the American Watch Company in 1857, after the bankruptcy of the Boston Watch Company.

This second edition of "Watchmaking and the American System of Manufacturing" contains many changes to the original, and also briefly examines mass production and includes a study of adaptable machines, in particular the watchmaker's lathe and the domestic sewing machine.

Amongst many important changes to the first edition, the book incorporates updated material from the addendum "Cook Rice and Potatoes", and that article is no longer available.

This book is provided as an Adobe Acrobat PDF file of about 4.4 MB:

Illustration: Hamilton 940, circa 1912.