Heuer. A Stainless Steel and Chrome Plated Wristwatch with Tide Indication and Center Seconds
This lot is offered without reserve.
Heuer. A Stainless Steel and Chrome Plated Wristwatch with Tide Indication and Center Seconds

SIGNED HEUER, SOLUNAR MODEL, NO. 905'397, CIRCA 1949

Details
Heuer. A Stainless Steel and Chrome Plated Wristwatch with Tide Indication and Center Seconds
Signed Heuer, Solunar Model, No. 905'397, Circa 1949
Movement: Manual
Dial: Silvered, gilt Arabic numerals with luminous accents, luminous hands, center seconds, subsidiary dial
Case: Chrome plated with stainless steel engraved screw back, one round button in the band, 36mm diam.
Strap/Buckle: Associated leather strap, associated stainless steel buckle
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Lot Essay

"One interesting thing that happened during my school days was that around 1947 or 1948, when I was 15, I made my first professional contribution to the family watchmaking business. One day my father came home from work and said that Walter Haynes, who was then the president of upmarket sporting outfitters Abercrombie & Fitch in New York, had asked him to create a watch which could display the time of tides. Funnily enough, some years earlier my father had thought it would be useful to have a watch that showed the phases of the moon because while mushroom hunting he had observed that morels seemed to spring up in greater numbers during a waxing moon. But a watch that could display the time of tides really stumped him. He had not seen the sea for quite a few years and was not at all familiar with the subject of tides. He scratched his head and admitted he had no idea how to do it. I told my father that my physics teacher at school, Dr. Heinz Schilt, was a genius and I was sure he would be able to find a solution. Indeed he could and he performed all the calculations for the wheels and cogs needed for a watch to predict high tides at a given location. Thanks to him and my intermediation we were able to create our first tide watch, the “Solunar”, and later the “Mareograph-Seafarer”. This was my very first involvement with the creation of a watch."
-Jack Heuer in his autobiography "The Times of My Life", p. 26-27

The Heuer Solunar was an important watch in the history of both the company that would become TAG Heuer and for a young Jack Heuer, then only a 15-year-old. Abercrombie & Fitch requested Charles-Edouard Heuer create a wristwatch that would track tides to assist sportsmen, particularly those hunters and fishermen who subscribed to the solunar theory that the behavior of animals and fish was affected by movement the moon, similar to how tides were affected by the location of the moon.

In 1949, Heuer introduced the product of the collaboration between Charles-Edouard Heuer, Jack Heuer, and Dr. Heinz Schilt (Jack's physics teacher): the Solunar, which displayed the time and tide. Shortly thereafter, Heuer introduced the Abercrombie & Fitch Seafarer and the Heuer Mareograph, which added a chronograph. These watches were sold in various iterations at Abercrombie & Fitch stores in the United States through the 1970s. Most of the Solunar watches initially simply featured “Heuer” on the dial, but two examples are known to the market that are co-branded with “Abercrombie & Fitch Co” in an arc above the Heuer shield.

The present Solunar watch is original condition with charismatic patina to the dial and hands. Offered without reserve, it is a remarkable piece for a collector of important, unusual, and rare vintage watches.


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