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80129

1920 Jack Dempsey Presentational Timekeeper's Pocket Watch....

2013 February 23 - 24 Platinum Night Sports Auction - New York #7070

 
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Auction Ended On: Feb 23, 2013
Item Activity: 11 Internet/mail/phone bidders
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Location: Ukrainian Institute of America at The Fletcher-Sinclair Mansion
2 East 79th Street
New York, NY 10075

Description:
Includes photograph of the presentation to Colorado State Senator & Dempsey Fight Timekeeper
1920 Jack Dempsey Presentational Timekeeper's Pocket Watch. Exquisite platinum pocket watch is a collecting treasure even in the absence of its elite pugilistic provenance, a top-quality Swiss seventeen-jewel split second chronograph with thirty minute register from noted watchmaker Leonidas. The generous Christmas gift recounts a close friendship between the reigning Heavyweight Champion of the World and Colorado State senator Bill "Cyclone" Lyons, who served as timekeeper for several of Dempsey's most notable fights, including his 1919 victory over Jess Willard to claim the title, and the historic battle with French Champion Georges Carpentier. It is likely that this is the watch used by Lyons for the latter, a bout that would prove to be Dempsey's next following the presentation of the watch to Lyons.

A masterpiece of horological design, the watch features small photographic images of Dempsey, Lyons and Dempsey's manager "Doc" Kearns on the dial, with dozens of real diamonds ringing the perimeter. At the very edge of the dial, alternating diamonds, rubies and sapphires provide a decidedly patriotic theme. Six more stones provide color to the back of the watch case, where a small photographic vignette of Dempsey in a fighting pose takes center stage. Enamelled text reports the details of the presentation:

"To a True Friend, My Pal, Sen. Bill Lyons, From Wm. Harrison (Jack) Dempsey, Heavyweight Champion of the World, Christmas 1920."

Light toning to the dial and photographic image on verso account for the bulk of condition issues, as the case itself is free of any signs of damage. Nine decades later, a spin of the winding stem revives the ticking pulse. Case measures 45mm. Included is a marvelous 5x5" original photograph of Dempsey handing the watch to Lyons. A remarkable offering from the most important boxer of the Golden Age of American Sport.





1920 Jack Dempsey Presentational Timekeeper's Pocket Watch.


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