Rolex - The New York Watch Auction: SIX New York Saturday, June 11, 2022 | Phillips

Create your first list.

Select an existing list or create a new list to share and manage lots you follow.

  • Manufacturer: Rolex
    Year: 1962
    Reference No: 1675
    Movement No: D63’252
    Case No: 884’243
    Model Name: GMT-Master
    Material: 18K yellow gold
    Calibre: Automatic, cal. 1560, 26 jewels
    Bracelet/Strap: 18K yellow gold riveted Rolex Oyster bracelet, stamped 45B, max overall length 210mm
    Clasp/Buckle: 18K yellow gold Rolex deployant clasp stamped 7206, and 6S
    Dimensions: 39mm Diameter
    Signed: Case, dial, movement, and clasp signed.
    Accessories: Accompanied by green leather Rolex presentation box, Rolex One Year Service Center Guarantees dated June 6, 1978, and December 12, 1980, along with corresponding Rolex invoices, and provenance photo album.

  • Catalogue Essay

    Rolex introduced the now iconic GMT-Master dual time wristwatch in 1955, developed with Pan American Airlines for both pilots and the jet-set. By 1959, Rolex upgraded the model and introduced the new reference 1675, which now had crown guards to prevent damage to the crown, and the fragile Bakelite bezel insert was replaced with a more resilient metal insert. The gold version of reference 1675, however, would not feature crown guards for another few years, as seen on the present example.

    The present lot stands out for its wonderful provenance. It was originally owned by Forrest Bird (1921-2015) an American aviator, inventor, and biomedical engineer. He is best known for the development of the first, reliable mass-produced mechanical respirator. So important were his contributions to science, he received the Presidential Citizens Medal from President George Bush in 2008, and in 2009, he was awarded the National Medal of Technology and Innovation by President Barrack Obama.

    Forrest Bird’s name is documented on the two included Rolex service invoices, and the lot is accompanied by the original Rolex presentation box, and a photo album featuring Mr. Bird wearing the watch throughout his lifetime.

    This early and extremely attractive yellow gold GMT-Master is a rare transitional model, featuring rare and early luminous leaf hands. The watch’s attractiveness is further enhanced by its vibrant grené dial with gold cup-shaped luminous hour markers referred to by collectors as “bicchierini”. A highly sought-after watch with a remarkable story behind it, the present GMT-Master is a handsome example that will certainly delight its next owner.

  • 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.

    View More Works


Ref. 1675
An early, fine, and attractive yellow gold dual time wristwatch with date, no crown guards, riveted bracelet, service invoice and provenance material, formerly owned by Forrest Bird, inventor of the mechanical respirator

39mm Diameter
Case, dial, movement, and clasp signed.

$40,000 - 80,000 

Sold for $75,600

Contact Specialist

Paul Boutros

Head of Watches, Americas

+1 (212) 940-1293


Isabella Proia

Head of Sale, New York

+1 (212) 940 1285

The New York Watch Auction: SIX

New York Auction 11-12 June 2022