Watch Papers: An American Antiquarian Society Illustrated Inventory

The American Antiquarian Society holds a collection of more than 400 American watch papers ranging in dates from the 1790s to 1910. These ephemeral items were inserted into a watch case to protect the delicate mechanisms from dust and debris. These papers often included advertisements for the watch maker or jeweler and were frequently used over the life of a watch to record repairs, with manuscript notes and dates of oiling, spring replacement and cleaning made on the back of the small round disc of paper. Many also include decorative images showing elaborate time pieces, allegorical women, Father Time, or even the shopfront or factory where the watch was made.

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