Dating your watch

A watch is a timepiece intended to be carried or worn by a person.It is designed to keep working despite the motions caused by the person's activities.The company Mappin & Webb began production of their successful "campaign watch" for soldiers during the campaign at Sudan in 1898 and accelerated production for the Second Boer War a few years later.Early models were essentially standard pocket-watches fitted to a leather strap but, by the early 20th century, manufacturers began producing purpose-built wristwatches.The Swiss company Dimier Frères & Cie patented a wristwatch design with the now standard wire lugs in 1903.

Developments in the 2010s include smartwatches, which are elaborate computer-like electronic devices designed to be worn on a wrist.

Aaron Lufkin Dennison started a factory in 1851 in Massachusetts that used interchangeable parts, and by 1861 it was running a successful enterprise incorporated as the Waltham Watch Company.

The concept of the wristwatch goes back to the production of the very earliest watches in the 16th century.

The lever escapement was the single most important technological breakthrough, and was invented by Thomas Mudge in 1759 and improved by Josiah Emery in 1785, although it only gradually came into use from about 1800 onwards, chiefly in Britain.

Although there was an attempt to modernise clock manufacture with mass production techniques and the application of duplicating tools and machinery by the British Watch Company in 1843, it was in the United States that this system took off.

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