Packard’s Vacheron Constantin Watch Triples to $1.8 Million at Christie’s

A 20-karat-gold Vacheron Constantin from the collection of U.S. car manufacturer James Ward Packard (1863-1928) sold for almost $1.8 million at Christie’s International in New York today, more than triple the presale high estimate.

The 1919 watch, one of four Packard timepieces put up for auction in Christie’s Important Watches sale, features his signature Art Nouveau monogram in blue enamel and strikes every quarter hour.

The four watches, which had been stores for 60 years in a bank vault, brought in a total of $2.75 million, compared with the presale high estimate of $906,000.

A founder of Packard Motor Car Co. in 1902, Packard was an avid collector of watches. He commissioned an 18-karat gold minute-repeater from Patek Philippe in 1918, one of 17 watches the Swiss firm made specifically for Packard.

The minute-repeater, which has a power reserve and an unusual Murat-style case, sold for $986,500, more than double the high estimate of $400,000

The remaining pieces are two 19th-century pocket watches that belonged to Packard’s father, Warren Packard, and were made by American Watch Co. Each sold for $2,750, just below their presale high estimate of $3,000.

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