Who Made This Watch?

James Russell & Co., Hartford Conn

#22899 by Ron Price

This movement is in bad shape, but it looks identical to James Russell 23283. With its under sprung balance and 2.5mm translucent jewels burnished into the plate, it looks similar to Wm. Ellery S/N 345351, circa 1868, except it has an applied index and does not have screw adjustable bank pins, nor dust band screw. See comparison page with Ellery. Also the top plate encircles the barrel as on early Model 57s, preceding the Ellery. Sub-assembly number 30 is stamped on under side of top plate, on pillar plate, under barrel bridge and under balance bridge; no numbers under hour & minute wheels. Would expect to see two digit sub-number on movements under S/N 40,000. The James Russell potance (holds bottom arbor of balance) looks very much like the early "Waltham" potance part number #215, and has a 1st series click and oblong ratchet bridge like a P.S. Bartlett around S/N 17,000. See comparison page with Bartlett. The train looks standard Model 57 with 3-arm toe-end escape wheel and enclosed English style pallet.

Assuming Russell 22899 was made with factory parts, perhaps the plates were for a 7J movement (no plate jewels), drilled and fitted with burnished jewels. Most parts were of era under S/N 20,000, circa 1859. This movement is closer to a "Waltham" M57 than other Russells, but the mystery continues.

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