With Patek Philippe Extract from the Archives confirming production of the present watch with raised hour markers in gold and rose gold bracelet in 1954 and its subsequent sale on 28 September 1954. Furthermore delivered with a spare Patek Philippe crown highlighted by the mirrored "P" (shown on catalogue image) as the watch is sold with a later Patek Philippe crown featuring the Calatrava cross.
Reference 2526 and its successor 3428 are undisputedly amongst the most elegant and distinguished vintage watches ever made.
Reference 2526 was introduced into the market in 1952 and was Patek Philippe's first self-winding watch ever made, starting with movement number 760'000 (delivered in July 1953 to Mr. J.B. Champion, one of Patek Philippe's faithful clients. This watch, fitted with a gold bracelet, is today the pride of a discerning collector). The model features the legendary calibre 12-600 AT which was granted Swiss patent No. 289758 in 1953 for "a self-winding mechanism for a wristwatch movement using the energy supplied by a rotary mass causing an eccentric part to transmit a swinging movement to an organ of the mechanism".
The first 500 movements of calibre 12'''600, such as the present watch, were fitted with the earliest version of this legendary ébauche without ball bearing, rendering these watches particularly rare and collectable.
The majority of reference 2526 was cased in yellow gold (see lot 330 in this auction), a small series in pink gold and an exceedingly limited number in white gold and in platinum (see lot 301).