Rolex - The Geneva Watch Auction: NINE Geneva Saturday, May 11, 2019 | Phillips

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  • Manufacturer: Rolex
    Year: Circa 1964
    Reference No: 1019 caseback further stamped 1.64
    Movement No: D84'920
    Case No: 1'065'404
    Model Name: Milgauss
    Material: Stainless steel
    Calibre: Automatic, cal. 1580, 26 jewels
    Bracelet/Strap: Stainless steel Rolex Oyster bracelet, reference 78360, end links stamped 580, max length 185mm
    Clasp/Buckle: Stainless steel Rolex deployant clasp
    Dimensions: 37.5mm Diameter
    Signed: Case, dial, movement and bracelet signed

  • Catalogue Essay

    Rolex has long been associated with “tool” wristwatches, which originally were designed with a functional purpose in mind. From their collaboration with Pan American Airways for the GMT-Master dual time zone wristwatch, to the Submariner watch for professional deep-sea divers, these timepieces have captured the imagination of collectors and are today highly sought after in the international market. The Milgauss, reference 1019, is another example of a Rolex sports model that today enjoys considerable prestige beyond its original intent. Originally released in 1954, the Milgauss reference 6541 was designed to meet the needs of scientists and engineers working in a magnetic environment. Rolex worked in collaboration with the Conseil Européen de Recherche Nucléaire (CERN), to develop an inside Faraday Cage that would allow the watch to withstand up to 1000 Gauss of magnetism. Hence its name: “Mille Gauss” meaning a thousand Gauss in French. Along with its companion piece the reference 6543, the two remained in production until the beginning of the 1960s when Rolex released the reference 1019. The new reference featured a fresh and modern update to its appearance such as a smooth bezel and a modified dial layout. Early models, like the present one would have square luminous dots and luminous indexes at 3,6 and 9 as well as 1/5 hash markers around the dial. Only later examples would feature 1/2 hash marks. Reference 1019 was available with a silver or matte black dial, and ceased production around 1990. Furthermore, this watch presents an extremely rare -T Swiss T- dial indicating the use of Tritium as a luminous material.

    At the time of production, the reference was not particularly successful and production numbers were low. The model is highly sought after today due to its rarity.

  • Artist Biography


    Swiss • 1905

    Founded in 1905 England by Hans Wilsdorf and Alfred Davis as Wilsdorf & Davis, it soon became known as the Rolex Watch Company in 1915, moving its headquarters to Geneva in 1919. Like no other company, the success of the wristwatch can be attributed to many of Rolex's innovations that made them one of the most respected and well-known of all luxury brands. These innovations include their famous "Oyster" case — the world's first water resistant and dustproof watch case, invented in 1926 — and their "Perpetual" — the first reliable self-winding movement for wristwatches launched in 1933. They would form the foundation for Rolex's Datejust and Day-Date, respectively introduced in 1945 and 1956, but also importantly for their sports watches, such as the Explorer, Submariner and GMT-Master launched in the mid-1950s.

    One of its most famous models is the Cosmograph Daytona. Launched in 1963, these chronographs are without any doubt amongst the most iconic and coveted of all collectible wristwatches. Other key collectible models include their most complicated vintage watches, including references 8171 and 6062 with triple calendar and moon phase, "Jean Claude Killy" triple date chronograph models and the Submariner, including early "big-crown" models and military-issued variants.

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Ref. 1019 caseback further stamped 1.64
An extremely attractive stainless steel anti-magnetic wristwatch with bracelet

Circa 1964
37.5mm Diameter
Case, dial, movement and bracelet signed

CHF15,000 - 25,000 

Sold for CHF27,500

Contact Specialist
Alexandre Ghotbi
Head of Sale
+ 41 79 637 1724

The Geneva Watch Auction: NINE

Geneva Auction 11-12 May 2019