O principal museu de relojoaria dos Estados Unidos, o The National Watch and Clock Museum (NAWCC), instalado em Columbia, Pensilvânia, realiza de Abril a Dezembro de 2010 a exposição Grand Complications, Art of the Watchmaker.
Columbia, PA, 17512
Ter - Sab: 10:00 - 16:00
April 2010 - December 2010:Grand Complications, Art of the Watchmaker: will present some beautiful timepieces from fine watchmakers, who combined technical expertise and aesthetic panache to make their watches. As markets grew more competitive, so did the need to enhance and improve the mechanics and appearance of watches. Visitors will gain a greater appreciation for the skill of the watchmaker and designer through the exhibition of a variety of watch styles and technologies.
O parceiro do NAWCC é, mais uma vez, a manufactura suíça Gallet, de que deixamos aqui uma Time line:
Humbertus Gallet, living and working in Geneva, becomes a citizen of the republic on the 18th of April. Historical references point to his profession as a horloger or clock maker (see: "Le Livre des Bourgeois de l'ancienne République de Genève", Alfred L. Covelle, 1897, page 59).
As a result of the abolishment by French King Louis XIV of the tolerance agreement of Nantes, which guaranteed the peaceful co-existence of Catholics and Protestants, additional members of the Bourg-en-Bresse Gallet family, whose documented professions are as goldsmiths and watchmakers, join their relatives in Geneva to live and practice their trade.
Pierre Gallet (1712 - 1768) marries noblewoman Jeanne Renee de Rabours. The marriage contract records Pierre Gallet's profession as master goldsmith. This document also lists the occupation of Pierre's father, Philippe Gallet (1679 – 1739), as goldsmith and watchmaker.
Jeanne Renee gives birth to a son, Jacques, who follows in his father's occupation as jeweler and watchmaker
Jacques Gallet (1745 - 1806) fathers a son, Jean-Louis Gallet (1774 - 1809).
Julien Gallet (1806 - 1849), son of Jean Louis, relocates the family watchmaking business to La Chaux-de-Fonds, a major center for pocket watch production. At this time, the company name is registered as Gallet & Cie (Gallet & Company). In accordance with tradition, watch movements continue to be signed with the Julien Gallet name as the company's current patriarch. Julien Gallet determines that any watch that carries the Gallet name must be of the finest quality available. Cases are to be made of solid 18K gold and mechanisms will incorporate the most advanced features available to the watchmaking trade.
Julien Gallet dies at 43, after which the company is run by his widow Louise, and sons Leon and Lucien.
Leon Gallet (1832 - 1899) becomes the patriarchal figure of the rapidly growing Gallet & Cie. He expedites the expansion of the company and the need for more workshop space by acquiring Grumbach & Co., which produces watches with the brand name Electa. Gallet & Cie. is renamed Electa Gallet & Cie. and produces watches under both the names Gallet and Electa. Leon carries on his father's tradition of utilizing only the finest components available in timepieces signed with the Gallet name.
Leon Gallet, together with Longines in St. Imer, found the "Intercantonal Company for Industrial Development" in the Jura area of Neuchatel. Marketing is primarily European based with an emphasis on sales to England.
Leon Gallet's brother Lucien Gallet establishes the company's first US location in Chicago, with a New York City office following soon after. The New York office is located at 20 West 47th Street. Together with Jules Racine, a cousin of the Gallet brothers living in the US, the company greatly expands its distribution to the American market. While case styles are determined by American taste, all movements are manufactured at Gallet's La chaux-de-Fonds Switzerland headquarters.
Jules Racine becomes the exclusive U.S. importer and distributor for Gallet watches, as well as his own Racine brand, established in 1870. All watches imported into the US are marked with the Racine's Swiss JXR import code on the balance cock. Jules Racine continues to be the American distributor for Gallet watches until the 1970's.
After the death of his brother Lucien, Leon Gallet continues to live part time in New York City in order to work with Jules Racine on the further development of Gallet's U.S. distribution.
A strategic partnership is formed with Jules Jeanneret & Fils, one of the world’s most respected makers of timer and chronograph movements. This prestigious company, supplies its highest quality mechanisms for Gallet’s professional use line of watches.
Leon hands over management of the parent company to his sons Julien (1862-1934) and Georges (1865-1946), but continues to remain involved until his unexpected death in New York in 1899. The company name is changed to Julien Gallet & Cie to reflect the older son's control of the company. By this time, the Gallet company is producing more that 100,000 watches annually
Gallet introduces the first wrist-worn watches for mass consumption by men and women. Originally launching them in the American market, this innovation involved enclosing a small pocket watch within a leather holder for attachment around the wrist. These first "wristwatches" are immediately rejected due to public perception as being too unusual for women and too feminine for men. All unsold examples are soon returned to Switzerland for disassembly. In spite of initial resistance to this ground breaking innovation, wristwatches are issued during WWI as a more useful way for soldiers to tell time in combat situations.This new concept, first pioneered by Gallet, is shortly added to the offerings of numerous other watch companies.
Gallet watches are chosen to keep the Canadian Railroads running on time. Ultra high quality, chronometer grade movements with special patented regulators are created by Gallet and distributed by Timothy Eaton (T. Eaton Department Store) for railway use as well as to Eaton's most discerning patrons. This Gallet / Eaton relationship continues well into the 1940s, and includes an apprenticeship by Bernard Gallet, Leon Gallet's grandson, at Eaton's Canada store.
Gallet wins a silver medal at the Swiss National Exhibition in Geneva.
Upon his death in New York, Leon Gallet bequeaths a sizeable sum of money to La Chaux-de-Fonds, the town of his birth, of which a portion is earmarked to finance a new museum of watches. Today, the museum houses the company's collection of some 100 of Gallet's most complicated and valuable timepieces, including the world's first wristwatch produced for mass consumption. Leon Gallet's son Georges serves as honorary director of the Museum of Watches in La Chaux-de-Fonds for the next twenty years.
Shortly after Leon Gallet's death, the company name is changed back to Gallet & Cie (Gallet & Co.).
Following the break up of the firm of Jules Jeanneret & Fils, Jules Jeanneret’s son, Henri Jeanneret-Brehm, establishes a new manufactory with financial assistance from Gallet. The company is given the name Excelsior Park, reflecting Gallet’s current focus on sales to the American market. This joint venture between the two companies results in the eventual development of some of the finest time recording mechanism in history, including the famous Excelsior Park chronograph calibre 4. Excelsior Park movements are installed almost exclusively in Gallet pocket chronographs and stopwatches, with a small number distributed to other manufacturers when production capabilities allowed. Georges Gallet devotes a part of his time working at Excelsior Park as the company’s financial director.
Gallet wins a Diploma of Honor at the Liege Exhibition.
The company name "Gallet & Cie, Fabrique Electa" is registered to reinforce Gallet's ownership and control of the Electa brand. All Electa trademarks are transferred to the Gallet Family. Under the Electa name, Gallet produces some of the finest timepieces manufactured in Switzerland.
With the successful marketing of Gallet watches in America, the company seeks to develop the Asian market. In order to attend to distributors, Julien travels regularly via Bombay, Singapore, and Shanghai, to Japan, which was to become an important market. Major clients include Hattori (now Seiko), Kingoro Tzana, Tamaya & Co., Mitsukoshi, and Kobayashi. As a result of this powerful and long-standing market presence, Gallet is widely recognized in contemporary Japan as a producer of fine quality, complicated professional wristwatches. Concurrently, Leon Gallet, son of Georges, make regular trips between Tokyo and New York, via San Francisco, in order to facilitate the operation of the Racine company.
Gallet creates the first wristwatch for mass distribution to include a full-sized constant seconds hand originating from the center of the dial (face). Up until this time, wristwatches either lacked a second hand or contained a small subsidiary second hand located within the lower half of the dial. This innovation proved useful for timing tasks that emphasized seconds over minutes and hours, including the measuring of the human heart rate. Gallet’s new “sweep second” watches were issued to military nurses and medics during World War I.
After long and rigorous timepiece evaluation by the government of Great Britain, Gallet is chosen to provide a special wristwatch with integral time recording functions for the armed forces during the war. This world's first true chronograph wristwatch was an obvious transitional timepiece. While technically refined and reduced in size from a traditional pocket chronograph, it still retains the three piece case, porcelain enamel dial, and center button crown of it's larger predecessor.
Gallet wins the Grand Prize in the Chronometer category at the Swiss National Exhibition in Berne.
Gallet supplies hand held and cockpit mounted timers to the United Kingdom during WW I. Movements are marked with the Electa name.
Gallet wins the 1st place award for chronometer accuracy at the Canton Observatory in Neufchatel.
Gallet produces a series of “Duo Dial” wristwatches for the medical and technical professions. The full-sized lower subsidiary seconds dial greatly simplifies the task of calculating a person’s per-minute heart rate.
While the company slowly develops viable markets for its new wristwatch innovation, it is able to flourish during the Great Depression as a result of its expertise in the area of professional use timepieces. Gallet's important contributions include steel cased chronographs for military, technical, and sports related applications, and doctor's watches that measure pulse rates. These innovations allowed the Gallet Company to survive the world wide economic crisis after the stock market crash of 1929.
As World War II becomes imminent, Gallet begins prolific production of wristwatches for the Allied Forces, boat clocks with 8 day movements, and military stop watches for Great Britain, Canada, and the U.S.A.. At the start of World War II, production again reaches 100,000 watches annually.
Gallet introduces the first water resistant cases for protecting the delicate mechanism of chronograph wristwatches from the damaging effects of humidity. This ground breaking innovation become standard on many models in Gallet's "MultiChron" line of professional use timepieces, as well as the upcoming Flying Officer military issue pilot's watch.
Commissioned by Senator Harry S Truman for the pilots of the U.S. Army Air Force, Gallet designs the legendary "Flying Officer". This extraordinary timekeeping milestone provides a combination of extremely important new innovations. Besides the ability to accurately record events ranging from 1/5th second to 30 minutes in duration, this horological breakthrough features a rotating 12 hour bezel as well as a dial with major cities listed on the periphery. By rotating the bezel, pilots now had the ability to calculate changes in the time as lines of longitude are crossed. Truman wears a Gallet Flying Officer during his two terms (1945 - 1953) as US president.
Gallet breaks the gender barrier again by producing the Multichron Petite. The Petite is the world’s first wrist chronograph engineered exclusively for enlisted woman assigned to technical and scientific tasks during WWII. Powered by the extraordinary 10 ligne (12 millimeter) Valjoux 69 movement, and measuring only 26.6mm in diameter by 32.5mm from lug to lug, this is the smallest production chronograph ever manufactured.
Canada's T. Eaton Department Store introduces "SOLAR", their own in-house brand. This extremely successful line of watches is manufactured for Eaton by both Gallet and Rolex in Switzerland.
With the end of World War II, and the death of his father Georges, Leon Gallet assumes management of the Gallet Company. Only minor changes are needed to alter Gallet's military designs into trendy chronographs for sportsmen and civilian pilots. Utilizing the famous Valjoux Caliber 72C movement, an especially nice 12 hour recording chronograph is produced capable of accurately displaying the month, date, and day of the week.
The "Flying Officer" model remains as a highly sought after classic throughout the fifties and sixties, utilizing Landeron model 148 and 149 movements, as well as the Venus Caliber 150. This icon of timekeeping continues to develop technically for accommodating various professional applications, including the pilot's "Excel-O-Graph". This particularly refined timepiece features a rotating bezel with integrated slide rule for making navigational calculations, and becomes the prototype for later models by other Swiss watchmakers.
Asian manufacturers begin releasing electronic quartz regulated time pieces onto the world markets. By continuing to build fine mechanical timepieces of uncompromising quality for a clientele not influenced by changing fads and convention, Gallet flourishes during the so called "quartz crisis" that resulted in the demise of numerous other Swiss brands.
Upon the death of Leon Gallet, sons Pierre and Bernard assume management of the company. They acquire the Racine company, which has been struggling as a result of devaluation of the U.S. dollar.
Excelsior Park closes its factory due to the lack of family successors and its inability to compete with manufacturers of mass produced quartz movements. To continue to support owners of Excelsior Park powered watches, Gallet acquires the balance of the company’s remaining inventory and assets.
As a result of their dedication to excellence in the production of professional use timepieces,and in spite of intense competition, The Gallet company is chosen to provide over 30,000 watches for the U.S. army during Operation Desert Storm. Prototypes are arduously tested in the most adverse of conditions, including severe shock and vibration, extremes in temperature, positive and negative acceleration, powerful magnetic fields, and wide ranges of air and water pressure. Gallet's examples easily exceed all of the military's strict requirements for being highly accurate, virtually indestructible, and completely functional in all possible circumstances. The Gallet Desert Storm watches are marked "Marathon" on the dial, the company name of the agent that coordinates the arrangements between Gallet and the U.S. Government. Gallet's Marathon becomes the model from which all military style wristwatches are designed to the present day.
Pierre Gallet retires from the company due to ill health. His brother Bernard assumes control of the company, which continues to focus on highly complicated chronographs, stop and repetition timepieces, as well as diver's wristwatches, most of which originate from innovative Gallet models produced for the British Admiralty.
To facilitate expansion of the company, Bernard Gallet enters into a partnership with B. Neresheimer Ltd., one of Europe's most prestigious silver makers with over a hundred years experience in the manufacture and distribution of fine silver wares and high-end luxury goods.
The Gallet factory is relocated from La-Chaux-de-Fonds to Vaud, approximately one hour from Geneva. Walter Hediger, a Swiss born gentleman with decades of experience in handling the financial and managerial affairs of numerous horology based entities and a member of the Neresheimer family, takes the reigns of Gallet as its CEO. Mr. Hediger reconfirms the company's commitment to producing only the finest in timekeeping instruments for professional use.
Company activity becomes concentrated near Zurich. Bernard Gallet remains active with the company until his death in 2006.
Gallet & Co. co-sponsors "Time in Office" at the National Watch and Clock Museum, an exhibition of timepieces worn by America’s presidents extending back to the pocket watches of George Washington. One of the featured items in the exhibit is a Gallet Flying Officer chronograph commissioned by Harry S Truman's senatorial staff for US Army Air Force pilots during WWII, and personally worn by the president during his term in office.
Gallet & Co. co-sponsors "Time & Exploration" at the National Watch and Clock Museum, an exhibit highlighting the importance of time and timekeeping to the fields of exploration and navigation.