Ingersoll watches are known for their long history in the American market, dating back to 1892. But how good are they today?
The brand of American watches made history with its famous one-dollar watches, which they achieved by applying Ford’s mass production techniques to the watchmaking industry.
They are also credited with manufacturing the first luminous pocket watches used during World War I.
Currently, Ingersoll continues to manufacture its watches at reasonable prices, many of which are inspired by the golden years of watchmaking.
In this article, we will uncover some of the best Ingersoll watches, along with their history and the opinions they deserve, to ultimately determine if they are good or not.
Índice de contenidos
✚ Ingersoll Watches: Origin and History
The origin of Ingersoll watches dates back to 1882 when brothers Robert Hawley and Charles Henry Ingersoll decided to establish their small business in New York.
The company initially focused on manufacturing low-cost small products distributed through mail order.
In 1892, the Ingersoll brothers partnered with the Waterbury Watch Company to produce their first watch, the “Universal” model, a mechanical winding design that was worn as a pendant.
Initially, these watches were sold wholesale to other companies, but Ingersoll soon started selling them directly to customers, leveraging their experience in mail order sales with catalogs.
In 1896, the company launched the Yankee model at the modest price of one dollar per unit, becoming the cheapest watch available on the market at that time.
The model soon became known as the famous “dollar watch,” a milestone in mass production, with millions of units sold worldwide.
Shortly after, in 1904, the company established itself in London to sell its Crown model, a pocket watch that cost around 5 shillings, equivalent to one US dollar at that time.
By 1916, the company was already producing 12,000 watches daily with 10 different models, and in 1919, they invented the Radiolite model with a luminous dial.
In 1921, the First World War took its toll on Ingersoll, leading to bankruptcy. However, their English subsidiary survived, making the company fully British-owned.
Thus, the brand’s watches continued to be manufactured, and in 1930, they launched the Mickey Mouse model, selling 5 million units in the first few years after its release.
Although the American subsidiary was out of the game, the Waterbury Watch Company continued to manufacture and market Ingersoll watches in the US until 1950 when it changed its name to the United States Time Corporation, which is now known as the Timex Group.
After World War II, Ingersoll Ltd merged with Vickers Armstrong and Smiths Industries Ltd to continue producing affordable watches inspired by famous characters. However, in 1969, they withdrew from the alliance and ceased production.
Currently, the brand is owned by Zeon Watches, a British company and subsidiary of the Chinese Herald Group, which sells watches in more than 50 countries worldwide.
✚ Are Ingersoll Watches Good?
Ingersoll is no longer the American or English brand it once was, but this does not necessarily mean that all their current watches are of low quality.
Ingersoll watches are manufactured in China, but not all models offer the same level of finishing or the same value for money.
The brand produces watches with standard Chinese mechanisms, but they also make watches with higher-quality Seagull movements and some more expensive models with Japanese calibers.
Therefore, in some cases, they can be too expensive for what they offer, but in others, they can be a good purchase if obtained at a reasonable price.
In general, watches with Chinese movements are sold at prices much higher than their actual value, considering that there are Chinese watch brands like Pagani or Cadisen that offer the same quality at half the price.
However, there are some models that are in line with their price range as they feature Seagull movements (also Chinese but of higher quality) or more expensive and better-finished Japanese Miyota movements.
Ultimately, some Ingersoll watches are good, while others may not be worth it as they are too expensive for what they offer.
✚ Best Ingersoll Watches
Ingersoll mainly produces automatic and skeleton watches, although they also make some quartz watches, such as their famous Mickey Mouse designs.
➤ Ingersoll Automatic Watches
The more affordable models usually integrate custom Chinese movements, possibly derived from Dixmont Guangzhou movements, while the more expensive models may feature Seagull or even Miyota movements.
➤ Ingersoll Skeleton Watches
The brand also enjoys great success with its skeleton watches, original designs that showcase their own manufactured movements decorated with luxurious details.
➤ Ingersoll Disney Mickey Mouse Watches
Among the best watches from the brand, there are many successful models from its history that are still manufactured with updated movements.
A good example of this is the Mickey Mouse design that was highly popular in the mid-20th century, now transformed into accurate and durable quartz watches.
✚ Price and Reviews
Despite their classic German design, there is no doubt that these watchesare Chinese-made, also known as “Germasians,” as nowadays, almost everything comes from the Far East.
Considering that they are manufactured in China, the cost of these watches can be high, although some models offer components of quality in line with their price.
It’s also worth noting that Chinese watchmakers have significantly improved in recent years and now offer more reliable movements.
Therefore, it is not uncommon for many watches from this brand to receive positive reviews, even though they are not particularly inexpensive.
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Last update of links and images on 2023-11-29.