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IMPORTANT POCKET WATCHES AND WRISTWATCHES
20 October 2005
New York, Rockefeller Plaza
VACHERON CONSTANTIN. A VERY FINE, RARE, LARGE AND ULTRA-THIN 18K WHITE GOLD MINUTE REPEATING WRISTWATCH
Signed Vacheron & Constantin, Geneve, Movement No. 455137, Case No. 373260, Ref. 6448, circa 1959
With nickel-finished lever movement, 29 jewels, bi-metallic compensation balance, adjusted to heat, cold, isochronism and 5 positions, slide repeat, silvered matte dial with applied baton numerals, thin circular case with brushed band and straight lugs, the back with monogram for "HENRY D. MOYLE, 47 E.S.T, SALT LAKE CITY", case, dial and movement signed, with 18K white gold buckle
36mm diam., 7.3mm thickness (with glass)
PROPERTY OF A DESCENDANT OF THE ORIGINAL OWNER
Vacheron Constantin confirms that the present watch is found in their Archives and that it was made between 1959 and 1960. Minute repeaters are considered the pinnacle of Vacheron Constantin's production of complicated wristwatches.
To date, only one other example of a reference 6448 is known with immediately subsequent movement and case numbers, 455138 and 373261. This other example is also in white gold but possesses diamond numerals rather than the sleek baton indexes featured on the present watch. The reference 6448 displays an interesting contrast to the more relatively well-known Vacheron Constantin minute repeating wristwatch, the reference 4261 which possesses a more ornate case with characteristic teardrop lugs. The design of the reference 6448 with straight lugs and oversized case follows in the style of the late 1950's and 1960's, also seen in such famed wristwatches as the reference 3448 by Patek Philippe.
The inscription on the case back of the present watch details the original owner of this wristwatch as Henry D. Moyle, who purchased the watch from Vacheron Constantin circa 1960. Elder Moyle unfortunately enjoyed the watch only for a short time prior to his death when the watch was then kept in status by his family member until its present appearance at auction.
Born in Salt Lake City, Henry Dinwoodey Moyle was raised and baptized in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. At the age of twenty, in 1909, he began his missionary work in Europe where he remained for three years and ended his mission by studying engineering at the University of Freiberg.
After returning to Utah, he married Clara Alberta Wright in 1919 in Salt Lake City. The couple was the parents of six children, two sons and four daughters. In addition to his dedication and devotion to the Church, Henry Moyle graduated from the University of Chicago Law School and attended Harvard Law School, then practiced law in Utah and maintained a personal interest in such activities as Opera and outdoor activities like fishing and hunting. During his lifetime he also sat on the corporate boards of a number of companies including Consolidated Freightways and was a regional director of Phillips Petroleum.
But it was in his passion for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints where his true innovations and visions were revealed. By 1927, Moyle was called upon to preside over the Cottonwood Stake wherein he served until 1937. From 1938 for many years he acted as chairman of the Church General Welfare Committee. On April 10, 1947 he received the great honor of being ordained an apostle of the Church and a member of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles. In 1956 he chaired the Churchs Missionary Committee. Then, until his death, he served as a counselor in the First Presidency of the Church under President David O. McKay from 1959 until 1963.
In addition to his titles and his committee work he also played instrumental roles in designing the modern-day missionary program, acquiring and developing much real estate for the Church, including the twenty-six story Church Office Building. He was key to streamlining the Churchs Finance Department, and influencing the Church Educational System, the Missionary Training Center and the student stakes. Henry D. Moyle believed that all great men give others the credit.
Henry D. Moyle died on September 18, 1963 in Deer Park, Florida on the Church ranch he loved. His biography, Working the Divine Miracle: The Life of Apostle Henry D. Moyle, published in 1999 states:
"Moyle had more impact upon the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in the current century than any other man who did not hold the office of president. Certainly he belongs to that small group of counselors in the First Presidency who have been responsible for important change." (Page 224)
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