Longines - The Watch Auction: One Geneva Saturday, May 9, 2015 | Phillips

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  • Manufacturer: Longines
    Year: 1931
    Movement No: 5'147'631
    Case No: 5'147'631
    Model Name: Lindbergh Hour Angle
    Material: Silver
    Calibre: Manual, 18.69N
    Bracelet/Strap: Leather
    Clasp/Buckle: Stainless steel buckle
    Dimensions: 47mm. Diameter
    Signed: Case, dial and movement signed
    Accessories: This watch is accompanied by two letters from the descendants of Dieudonné Costes stating that the present watch was a gift to Costes by Lindbergh. It is furthermore accompanied by a knitted tapestry measuring 135X50 cm that prominently depicts Lindbergh, the “Spirit of St. Louis” and his transatlantic flight. Further accompanied by Extract from the Archives confirming that the present watch was sold on 22nd December, 1931 to Perusset, the firms agent for France.
    Literature: For a similar example please see Longines Watches by John Goldberger, pages 84 to 85

  • Catalogue Essay

    No one lesser than Col. Charles A. Lindbergh advised Longines during the development of the Hour Angle wristwatch for pilots. Following his return to St. Louis after his successful flight across the Atlantic, Lindbergh started drawing a wristwatch meeting the requirements of pilots during long distance flights. Lindbergh, a trained mechanic, sent these drawings in late 1930 to John Heinmüller who was not only president of the International Aviation Federation, but also director of Longines-Wittnauer in the US. After only 5 months a first prototype was ready and later the same year the Watch was in production.The present example is not only in extraordinary original condition but also rich in history. Made in the first year of production, it must have travelled across continents and oceans and could probably tell many fascinating stories.Dieudonné Costes (14 November 1892 – 18 May 1973) was a French aviator who set multiple flight distance records and was considered one of the most prominent European aviators of his time. He was a contemporary and friend of the legendary American aviator, Charles Lindbergh. In 1929, along with Maurice Bellonte, Costes set the world distance record when they flew from Paris to Qiqihar, China. In 1930, they flew from Paris to New York in 37 hours and 18 minutes, being the first aviators to complete a trans-Atlantic flight from East to West, reproducing, in the opposite direction, the famous achievement of Lindbergh who flew from New York to Paris in 33 hours 30 minutes flying the "Spirit of St-Louis" three years earlier in 1927.According to family tradition and to the included documents, the present watch was a gift from Lindbergh to Costes.

  • Artist Biography


    Swiss • 1832

    Auguste Agassiz founded Longines in 1832, and today is considered to be a pioneer in the evolution of the chronograph. During the 1930s, Longines' chronograph wristwatches were used as tools for wartime aviators and military personnel. As one of Switzerland's largest manufacturers, Longines was an important supplier of wristwatches to militaries of multiple nations.

    Today, they are owned by the Swatch Group and produce wristwatches for both men and women. Their vintage wristwatches continue to grow in desirability amongst collectors. Some of the most sought-after models include such oversized chronographs as the Lindbergh Hour Angle designed by Charles Lindbergh, Chronostop, Tre Tacche, A-7, Tasti a Spillo and Doppia Lanchetta.

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A fine, rare and historically interesting oversized silver aviator's hour angle wristwatch with enamel dial, centre seconds, slide rule, hand written letters, Extract from the Archives and tapestry, formerly the property of Dieudonné Costes

47mm. Diameter
Case, dial and movement signed

CHF60,000 - 80,000 

Sold for CHF143,000

Contact Specialist
Nathalie Monbaron
+41 22 317 81 83

The Watch Auction: One

Geneva Auction 10 May 2015 6:30pm