Prestigious Swiss luxury watch manufacture Patek Philippe has curated a collection of notable timepieces from iconic U.S. collectors to be showcased in the U.S. Historic Room at The Art of Watches Grand Exhibition New York. The dedicated room will present 27 timepieces on loan from the Patek Philippe Museum in Geneva, John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum, and private collections. These exceptional timepieces will offer insight into Patek Philippe’s most renowned U.S. patrons, and their passion for horology.
Highlights from the U.S. Historic Room will include 11 timepieces from two of the most legendary Patek Philippe collectors from the early twentieth century, Henry Graves Jr. and James Ward Packard. These two American titans of industry garnered some of the most complicated and significant timepieces of their time.
Henry Graves Jr. was a New York banker and fine arts enthusiast who commissioned many Patek Philippe timepieces including the “Henry Graves Supercomplication” pocket watch, created in 1933 and featuring 24 complications, which was recently sold by Sotheby’s in 2014 for a record breaking price of over 23 million dollars. James Ward Packard was an automobile magnate from Warren, Ohio who also commissioned numerous complicated watches, including the first timepiece featuring a celestial sky chart made by Patek Philippe.
Henry Graves Jr.’s collection in the U.S Historic Room will showcase six significant watches from the Patek Philippe Museum, including his 1928 open-face, keyless winding pocket watch with Minute Repeater, Grande Sonnerie, Petite Sonnerie, Perpetual Calendar, and Moon Phases.
James Ward Packard’s Astronomical Pocket Watch “The Packard” will be amongst the five watches presented from our James Ward Packard collection. Commissioned in 1927, this astronomical pocket watch features a Minute Repeater on three gongs, Perpetual Calendar, age and phases of the moon, time of sunrise and sunset in Warren, Ohio, running equation of time, and sky chart for the latitude of Warren. The back of the case opens to reveal a rotating celestial map with more than 500 stars enameled in gold, depicting the night sky as it would appear in any given night over Packard’s birthplace.
Patek Philippe is honored to showcase a historic desk clock on loan from the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum in Boston, Massachusetts. This autonomous quartz desk clock was commissioned by German retailer Heinz Wipperfeld and manufactured by Patek Philippe for President John F. Kennedy.
The clock was presented to President Kennedy by the mayor of West Berlin, Willy Brandt during his visit in June, 1963 on the day after his famous “Ich bin ein Berliner” speech. The noteworthy desk clock showcases the time in Moscow, Washington D.C, and Berlin to signify the establishment of a direct communication line between Washington D.C and Moscow.
Prominently featured in the U.S. Historic Room will be famed American baseball legend Joe DiMaggio’s Patek Philippe Ref. 130J, created in 1948 and one of Patek Philippe’s most sought-after chronograph references. This timepiece was reportedly given to Mr. DiMaggio by the owners of the New York Yankees, and was recently purchased at auction by a private collector who has graciously loaned it to Patek Philippe for The Art of Watches Grand Exhibition New York.
The U.S. Historic Room will be one of the ten thematic rooms at The Art of Watches Grand Exhibition New York. The exhibition will be open to the general public and free of admission July 13th -23rd, 2017 from 10:00am to 7:00pm.
About Henri Stern Watch Agency
The Henri Stern Watch Agency manages all of the business operations for Patek Philippe in the United States. Patek Philippe has had a long and significant history in the US, with Patek timepieces being sold in this market since the 1850’s. In 1935 Henri Stern, second generation owner of Patek Philippe solidified a presence in the US by leasing an office space in Rockefeller Center, where the company remains. The Henri Stern Watch Agency was officially incorporated in 1946. HSWA currently has 65 employees which includes 26 watchmakers, and is the sole distributor and official service center for the United States. Patek Philippe timepieces are currently offered at 95 authorized retail locations throughout the country. In October, 2015 the Patek Philippe Institute of New York was created to provide watchmaking training to selected students. At the end of the two-year program graduates will be able to successfully repair all simple mechanical Patek Philippe timepieces and will have the potential to join the HSWA watchmaking workshop.