Rescuing my Hamilton Cross Country

Rescuing my Hamilton Cross Country

Postby hcharles » August 21st 2015, 11:14am

[Recently I came across a Hamilton Cross Country watch. From what I have read, it appeared on the scene in 1956. This model used an Illinois watch movement with 17 jewels. The black inner dial rotates as the hours advanced. The letters P M C E and G represent the US time zones, and Greenwich mean time. It was supposed to appeal to travelers going cross country, but it never really caught on. So from what I gather is that it is an uncommon watch, not rare.

The watch that I purchased is currently in rather sad shape, as it is missing the second hand and has no crystal for it. Stupidly, I forgot to take before pictures of the watch, and it is currently in the hands of a local watch repairman. The pictures that will follow are gleaned from the web, so that what I described will make some sense.
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Re: Rescuing my Hamilton Cross Country

Postby ChronoMATT » August 21st 2015, 1:47pm

Congrats on the watch! Looks like you have a Cross Country I released in 1956 which uses economy leftover rectangular-shaped, Illinois movements Hamilton had on hand at the time. When the movement supply ran-out, the company redesigned the case to accommodate a round Hammie movement and renamed the watch Cross Country II. The first model originally sold for around $70.00, the II model for up to $90.00.

I don't know if the series "didn't catch on" as it was made for several years and Hamilton had enough faith in the model to retool and sell it beyond the Illinois version. There are similar Transcontinental "A" and "B" models with US and Great Britain maps printed dials, too, that use the same movement/disc system. I would say it was a "niche watch", and as such, understandably didn't sell as well as standard models.

A near mint condition example can go for many hundreds of dollars today, so putting some bucks into yours likely will be well worth it. You are correct, it's a scarce watch, but not rare.

Hope this helps. Promise to post pics of your finished project.
Last edited by ChronoMATT on August 21st 2015, 7:57pm, edited 4 times in total.
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Re: Rescuing my Hamilton Cross Country

Postby biglove » August 21st 2015, 2:25pm

Neat looking watch, one I haven't seen before.

Look forward to the photos.

Nice history, Matt. That's some WIS stuff right there!
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Re: Rescuing my Hamilton Cross Country

Postby mosc » August 21st 2015, 2:39pm

I love it!
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Re: Rescuing my Hamilton Cross Country

Postby Jamesbee » August 21st 2015, 7:09pm

Never seen anything like it, interesting concept.
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Re: Rescuing my Hamilton Cross Country

Postby svaglic » August 21st 2015, 7:42pm

Way cool Charles. I like the unusual watches, and that movement..... I think it is definately worth the fix up.
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Re: Rescuing my Hamilton Cross Country

Postby hcharles » August 21st 2015, 9:30pm

Thank you all for the replies. I was intrigued by the dial, and the relatively few examples left, and that it was worth the effort to rescue the watch. My watch repair guy, loves a challenge. I hope that the end result will be worthy. Thanks for the interest.

I like to find watches that are not mainstream, but with a history. Here's hoping that this restoration will be a worthy watch.
Since light travels faster than sound, some people appear bright until you hear them speak.

The trouble with quotes on the internet is that you can never know if they are genuine. Abraham lincoln
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