James HODDELL & Co, 15 Northampton Sq, London. No 13910


Rare centre- and offset jumping 1/4-seconds movement, jewelled to the fusee, circa 1865.

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Nicely finished fullplate hollow-back (no brass-edge) movement with hand setting from the rear, balance-brake at 5, the pierced cap stamped I.B (probably John Bennett, Liverpool) and the 16-size Lancashire frame stamped J.W (John Wycherly). Single-roller detached lever escapement. Compensation balance, spiral balance-spring. Beautifully signed enamel dial, blued-steel hands. 45 mm diameter, 10.5 mm deep, not including centre arbor.

James Hoddell & Co, with a deserved reputation for their watches, including American export models, and with an address in the heart of London's watchmaking district, but with their works at Craven Street in the Chapel Fields area of Coventry - this movement being a perfect example of the close ties between, London, Liverpool and Coventry within English work. NB: America led the world for watches marketed with many jewels and I suspect this caliper was aimed at the American market.

John Wycherly, Prescot, one of the best and most famous Liverpool watch rough movement manufacturers, supplier to most of the best English finishers and retailers of his day.

Edge repair to dial, at 7, otherwise a very good and complete example of what is a rare caliper. Not cleaned by me but ticking and working happily when wound.