Louis Frederic Lebete, Neuchatel / Charles Zbinden à Panama, "Remontoire Invisible et mise à l'heure Automatique Breveté", Case No. 403, 54 mm, 124 g, circa 1875
An early and fine automatic hunting case pocket watch with a rare system of automatic winding utilising the opening and closing of the front cover - made for the South American market Case: 18k gold, slide to reveal the winding button hidden in the band. Dial: enamel. Movm.: bridge movement, "Breveté S.G.D.G.", two engraved honour medals with engraving "Paris 1867", screw compensation balance.
Louis Frederic Lebet , Neuchatel, awarded two medals at the Paris Exhibition of 1867, the same year that Humbert Ramuz of Chaux-de-Fonds was granted English Patent No 2388 for a system of automatic winding utilising the opening and closing of the cover of a hunter cased watch. Lebet is almost certainly the actual maker of these movements and the firm went on to win a Diploma at the Swiss National Exhibition, held in Zurich in 1883, for perfecting a stem-wind system - this may be similar to the English Patent No 3945 taken out by Benjamin Haas junior, a Paris based watchmaker, in December 1873. A similar watch is illustrated and described in "Antique Watches" by Terence Camerer-Cuss, Woodbridge 1976, page 244.
Estimate 3,300 - 4,500 €
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