Hamilton Case Makers

Biggs

Biggs

I’m sure René Rondeau won’t mind me saying this, but “The Watch of The Future” only briefly mentions some of the Hamilton case makers that were used for the Hamilton Electric Watches. So here is my small photographic contribution to this subject.

Hamilton used many case manufacturers throughout its history, so many of these marks can be found on their manual wind pocket and wristwatches, not just their electric watches. Likewise, these case manufacturers not only made cases for Hamilton but other US watch makers as well, such as Elgin etc. I’ve not tried to correlate Hamilton Electric model with case maker…that would be a mammoth task.

Sad to say, none of these companies exist any longer. First, what little information I can find on the various companies and then the photos of their marks.

Star Watch Case Company (Star W. C. Co.): The cases from most of the Hamilton Electric models seem to be made by this company; they were a major case maker and were based in Michigan, US and have their own Wikipedia page. They went bust in 1982.

Schwab & Wuispard Case Co (S&W): From the Internet: S&W was created some time in the 1920/1930’s. It was terminated about 1963. It was located in Manhattan (NY) in the block accross the street from the UN on the seventeenth floor and was later moved to Woodside, NY. Compasses and inclinometers were f abricated during the Second World War for the war effort. During normal times watchcases were manufactured for Hamilton, Elgin, Longines, Girard Perregaux, some Rolex, Patek Phillip and various importers. The principal owner was Alphonse Wuischpard, Louis Wuischpard and later Milton Wuischpard. Max and Robert Schwab were former partners and were bought out. Jean M. Wuischpard* was VP, Director of Manufacturing for Schwab and Wuischpard of N.Y. from 1936 to 1963. He designed for Hamilton Watch Co., from 1963 to 1968, and he was a senior stylist designer for Pulsar Time Computer. He served in the Swiss military. Alphonse and Louis were the brothers of my grandfather. The Wuischpard family orginated in Geneva, Switzerland.

Most of the early Hamilton Electric models used cases made by S&W. After 1963, Star took over.

Biggs: Ralph W. Biggs Co. in Stamford, Connecticut was a case making subsidiary of Hamilton; they acquire the company in 1951….strange that only a few electric models used cases made by Biggs. I think this Bee logo is my favourite.

Jonell Watch Case, Inc. of Long Island. A very small watch case manufacturer. The only Hamilton Electric case they made was for the Altair model — one of the rarest of Hamilton Electrics. This case design is known to be seriously flawed and many have been repaired over the years.

DiVincenzo & Arienti (D&A), located in Brooklyn. Did many case designs for Omega but very few for Hamilton.

Queens Watch Case Company: Founded by Isidor Dinstman (1886-1967), who with sons Harvey S. Dintsman, Joseph Dinstman, and Hyman Dinstman were principals in the following New York watch companies: Diel Watch Case Company, Leeds Watch Case Company, I.D. Watch Case Company, I.D. Precision, Components Company, Queens Watch Case Company, J. B. Watch Case Company (3rd generation). It would appear that I.D Watch Case Company (along with Leeds and Queens) operated out of the same 137-11 90th Avenue address in Jamaica Queens in the early 1960’s. I.D. was in operation until at least 1987.

Queens cases are rarely used in Hamilton Electric models.

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