Vacheron Constantin Historiques American 1921

Swiss luxury watch manufacture Vacheron Constantin is celebrating the 100th anniversary of a historic watch nicknamed the American 1921 produced primarily for the American market in a very limited number of pieces. This new Historiques American 1921 series offers three variations: two white gold models and a 100-piece Collection Excellence Platine limited edition.

Vacheron Constantin Historiques American 1921 collection 2021

Introduced exactly a century ago, the American 1921 model is one of the most outstanding landmarks in the heritage of the Manufacture, which celebrates its avant-garde spirit through three new variations dedicated to vintage watch collectors and connoisseurs. A cushion-type case, the diagonal display, the crown positioned between 1 and 2 o’clock are all visual twists testifying to an aesthetic that appeals as much by its offset design as its timeless nature.

Vacheron Constantin Historiques American 1921 white gold models

Three new versions of the American 1921 are presented to mark the 100th anniversary: two models in 18K white gold and a 100-piece limited edition from the Collection Excellence Platine, powered by the in-house manual-winding movement, Calibre 4400 AS.

Vacheron Constantin Historiques American 1921 platinum model

With its generous 28.50 mm diameter magnified by the transparency of the sapphire caseback, this calibre is offset from its usual axis, while its imposing barrel ensures an approximately 65-hour (three-day) power reserve.

The American 1921 model stands out first and foremost in terms of design, with an elegantly understated cushion-shaped case defining its look. It is also distinguished by a stage-setting approach to the path of time. Unexpectedly offset by means of a 45-degree counter-clockwise rotation, the calibre enables a diagonal reading of time, while the crown is placed between 1 and 2 o’clock in the upper right-hand corner of the case. The result is a watch that is as strikingly original as it is appealing.

Vacheron Constantin Historiques American 1921 vintage watches

The initial versions produced were notably appreciated by driving enthusiasts who could thus read the time at a glance without having to take their hands from the steering wheel. The perfect gentleman driver’s watch, it was also adopted by elegant and avant-garde circles. A look through the archives reveals that two such watches belonged to American writer and clergyman Samuel Parkes-Cadman.

Renowned for his fight for racial equality and the struggle against anti-Semitism, the man was a pioneer at heart. He is notably known to have been one of the first to use radio to broadcast his sermons to several million listeners; and is thought to have opted for this watch because it allowed him to read the time easily and discreetly while preaching.

Vacheron Constantin Historiques American 1921 watch owned by Samuel Parkes-Cadman

One of the two timepieces he owned is now part of Vacheron Constantin’s heritage collection. This extremely rare model served as direct inspiration for the three new timepieces presented in 2021.

(1) Historiques American 1921, White Gold 40 mm

With its 18K white gold case, offset dial and crown boldly positioned between 1 and 2 o’clock, this American 1921 model reprises the aesthetic codes first outlined 100 years ago in the Vacheron Constantin workshops. This watch has a generous 40 mm case framing a finely grained silver-toned dial.

Vacheron Constantin Historiques American 1921, White Gold 40 mm

This extremely pared-down face bears Arabic numerals and a black-painted minutes track, along with slender 18K gold Breguet-type hands and a baton-type hand on the seconds counter – all three in black. This distinctive appearance is complemented by a brown calf leather strap crafted in the Milan-based workshops of Serapian, the Italian leather goods company founded in 1928.

Vacheron Constantin Historiques American 1921, White Gold 40 mm

Visible through the sapphire crystal caseback, the manual-winding Vacheron Constantin Calibre 4400 AS is offset from its usual axis.

Vacheron Constantin Historiques American 1921, White Gold 40 mm

This reliable and accurate in-house movement, developed in 2008, drives the display of hours, minutes and small seconds while ensuring a comfortable 65-hour power reserve. It is graced with hand-crafted finishes reflecting the noblest Haute Horlogerie traditions.

(2) Historiques American 1921, White Gold 36.5 mm

With its 36.5mm case, the American 1921 fits even the slimmest of wrists. Sculpted in 18K white gold, its slender silhouette frames a grained silver-toned dial with black-painted Arabic numerals and a snailed small seconds counter with slender black 18K gold open-tipped hours and minutes hands. Adding a retro touch in tune with the original design, the circumference of the dial is accentuated by a minutes track.

Vacheron Constantin Historiques American 1921 with 36.5 mm White Gold Case

Beating off the hours, minutes and small seconds, the manual-winding Vacheron Constantin Calibre 4400 AS is also offset from its traditional axis and extended by a crown positioned at 1:30 am.

Vacheron Constantin Historiques American 1921 with 36.5 mm White Gold Case

In addition to a comfortable 65-hour autonomy, this in-house movement features hand-crafted decorations visible through the transparent caseback and typical of Haute Horlogerie timepieces such as this new American 1921 watch.

Vacheron Constantin Historiques American 1921 with 36.5 mm White Gold Case

The finishing touch is set by two dark brown or burgundy straps in patinated calf leather, crafted by Italian leather goods manufacturer Serapian.

Vacheron Constantin Historiques American 1921 with 36.5 mm White Gold Case

(3) Historiques American 1921 Collection Excellence Platine

Entirely sculpted in 950 platinum, the American 1921 Collection Excellence Platine comes in a 100-piece individually numbered limited edition available exclusively in Vacheron Constantin boutiques.

Vacheron Constantin Historiques American 1921 Collection Excellence Platine

The well-proportioned 40 mm case in 950 platinum frames a 950 platinum dial with a sandblasted finish, punctuated by applied 18K white gold hour-markers and a minutes track reminiscent of traditional watch designs. The crown and buckle also feature the unique brilliance of this rare metal, while the platinum and silk thread stitching on the dark blue alligator strap constitutes a final refined detail.

Vacheron Constantin Historiques American 1921 Collection Excellence Platine

Behind the scenes, watchmaking sophistication is the order of the day with a manual-winding Vacheron Constantin Calibre 4400 AS which, in addition to driving displays of the hours, minutes and small seconds, offers a comfortable 65-hour power reserve.

Visible through the sapphire caseback, this movement reveals delicately hand-finished details representing the unmistakable signature of an Haute Horlogerie watch.

Technical details

Model: Historiques American 1921 with 40 mm White Gold Case
Reference: 82035/000G-B735

Vacheron Constantin Historiques American 1921, White Gold 40 mm

Movement
Calibre 4400 AS
Developed and crafted by Vacheron Constantin
Mechanical, manual-winding
28.6 mm (12 ½ ‘’’) diameter, 2.8 mm thick
Approximately 65 hours of power reserve
4 Hz (28,800 vibrations/hour)
127 components
21 jewels
Hallmark of Geneva certified timepiece

Indications
Hours, minutes
Small seconds

Case
18K white gold
40 mm diameter, 8.06 mm thick
Transparent sapphire crystal caseback
Water-resistance tested at a pressure of 3 bar (approx. 30 metres)

Dial
Grained silver-toned dial
Snailed small seconds counter
Black painted Arabic numerals and minutes track
18K gold blackened hours, minutes and seconds hands
Applied Maltese cross in polished 18K white gold

Strap
Dark brown calf leather with Serapian patina, calf leather inner shell, tone on tone stitching
Buckle 18K white gold buckle; Polished half Maltese cross-shaped

Model: Historiques American 1921 with 36.5 mm White Gold Case
Reference: 1100S/000G-B734

Vacheron Constantin Historiques American 1921 with 36.5 mm White Gold Case

Movement
Calibre 4400 AS
Developed and crafted by Vacheron Constantin
Mechanical, manual-winding
28.6 mm (12 ½ ‘’’) diameter, 2.8 mm thick
Approximately 65 hours of power reserve
4 Hz (28,800 vibrations/hour)
127 components
21 jewels
Hallmark of Geneva certified timepiece

Indications
Hours, minutes
Small seconds

Case
18K white gold
36.5 mm diameter, 7.41 mm thick
Transparent sapphire crystal caseback
Water-resistance tested at a pressure of 3 bar (approx. 30 metres)

Dial
Finely grained silver-toned dial
Snailed small seconds counter
Black painted Arabic numerals and minutes track
18K gold blackened hours, minutes and seconds hands
Applied Maltese cross in polished 18K white gold

Strap
Dark brown calf leather with Serapian patina, calf leather inner shell, tone on tone stitching
Delivered with a second burgundy calf leather strap
Buckle: 18K white gold buckle; Polished half Maltese cross-shaped

Model: Historiques American 1921 – Collection Excellence Platine
Reference: 82035/000P-B748

Vacheron Constantin Historiques American 1921 Collection Excellence Platine

Movement
Calibre 4400 AS
Developed and crafted by Vacheron Constantin
Mechanical, manual-winding
28.6 mm (12 ½ ‘’’) diameter, 2.8 mm thick
Approximately 65 hours of power reserve
4 Hz (28,800 vibrations/hour)
127 components
21 jewels
Hallmark of Geneva certified timepiece

Indications
Hours, minutes
Small seconds

Case
950 platinum
40 mm diameter, 8.06 mm thick
Transparent sapphire crystal caseback
Water-resistance tested at a pressure of 3 bar (approx. 30 metres)

Dial
950 platinum, sand-blasted
“Pt950” hallmark at 3 o’clock
Sandblasted small seconds counter
18K white gold Arabic numerals, minutes track, hours and minutes hands
Blued steel small seconds hand
Applied Maltese cross in polished 18K white gold

Strap
Dark blue Mississippiensis alligator leather with alligator inner shell, hand-stitched with platinum
950 and silk, saddle-finish, large square scales
Buckle: 950 platinum buckle; Polished half Maltese cross-shaped

Edition
Limited edition of 100 individually numbered pieces
Available exclusively from Vacheron Constantin boutiques