• Master
    8 Sep 2014, 8:11 p.m.

    This post assumes you have already read Part # 1

    The story behind the second Twin
    Before discussing this handsome fellow (of course, you all realized that the
    1st twin was a female - right? After all a watch designed as a pendant to be
    worn around the neck is very much a female timepiece) we need to understand
    what dizygotic twins are.

    " Dizygotic " which means a fraternal twin happens when two separate eggs
    are fertilized by two separate sperm. The chance of having a fraternal twin is
    also more prevalent if you're older than 35 .
    Generally, fraternal twins will have about the same physical likeliness as any
    siblings ,
    _ they 're pretty easy to tell apart especially when they're
    both of opposite sex

    So after reading Part # 1, you can understand that I was driven to try track
    down the owner of one of Henry Blanks beautiful Cal. 77 pendant watches
    that a similar pendant case could be re-made so as to house the Cal. 77
    movement in that I had bought.

    Yes, she can reside for the time being in a man's pocket watch case - but like
    all lovely
    ladies, she deserves a house of her own design.

    Where to start? How does one find the original? We know that Henry Blank was a
    well known jeweler, so maybe the American Jewelers Association had catalogs,
    or even an example in a museum somewhere? That avenue sadly drew a blank.

    Then, I came upon the idea - and remembered that I had once met the

    [granddaughter of the previous IWC owner](/t/how-i-put-my-foot-into-it-and-

    the-amazing-heritage-of-iwc/8247/post/221897/) and that she had told me that
    the family today still had many pieces in their possession, dating from that
    time. So maybe Mr. Henry Blank descendants had a pendant watch example.

    A search on the internet, turned up the fact that Mr. and Mrs. Blank had 5
    children. The last surviving daughter sadly passed away in 2009.

    From this article above, I learnr that the Blanks lived in Glen Ridge - so
    that's where to start searching. Who can help - well I know that our fellow
    forum'ers Bill Barker and Alan Ross lived up there in the area of
    Philadelphia. So I wrote them, and Alan immediately bounced back with a
    response that this was his old neck of the woods and just a short drive from
    his previous home! And that he was amazed to hear that so much of IWC's
    American legacy (namely, the Cresarrow / Henry Blank wholesaler Company )
    had been right on his doorstep and that Henry Blank had lived there for 42

    Bill too responded with "let me know what's needed". Game on!

    However, this article and the Encyclopedia Titanic site, also had other leads
    for me to follow up on, and I realised that the Blanks family were not only
    located in New Jersey but all over the USA. One such lead, directs me to
    Chicago, and I'm searching the web, looking for Cresarrow / Blank / Chicago
    and in particular a sister, Mrs. William C. F. Speckin of Chicago who was
    Henry 's sister.
    Maybe one of her 8 children are still alive - and just
    maybe they could have an IWC pendant watch?

    That 's when the second Twin appeared.

    What a handsome timepiece this is - and it's clearly a Cal. 77 and cased in a
    Cresarrow case. Truly magnificent and fitting MF's description precisely of
    how such a case should look like. ...with intricate case engravings and inlay

    ...don't assume that a Cresarrow case is a

    ..and the case back bears the famous C... with the arrow through it

    ... and you can see the intricate goldsmithing

    But can it be true - is that really the serial number of this watch Cal. 77
    Is this movement number #726377 - wait a minute, that 's just 3
    serial numbers lower than the Cal. 77 movement from the Pendant Watch
    is serial number 726380 !

    Now rightly or wrongly I've always understood that one of Florentine Ariosto
    Jones innovative approaches to engineering, and key to achieving volume
    manufacture in those days, was that they built watches down there in
    Schaffhausen in series of 10 watches at a time. This watch/movement by my
    reckoning was / had to be part of the same batch.

    Brotherhood of Friends
    OK so Chicago, but where in Chicago? It 's listed on a well-known internet
    auction site and under location is Chicago and nothing else. More Google work
    - but all I've got is a picture of a store front end. And the seller is not
    responding to questions on eBay. The price is high (reflected in the fact it's
    an 18K gold piece, and in very nice condition).

    Now, who do we know in Chicago? Well MF's used to be there - but he is now
    vacationing in Italy. I know that Alan used to be there often but he too is
    now in Florida but maybe he knows someone in Chicago who might be able to help
    track down this jeweler. It's a Wednesday afternoon and I message Alan. I get
    no response so I send more information.

    In the interim and no response, I'm scowering the internet. I have a phone
    number, but can't dial 1-800 from here. More Google work - and I have a name
    of a company (removed here for obvious reasons) and a street address which
    means of course nothing to me.

    Then Allan gets back to me. I tell him I think I have a lead…

    He says, " that 's less than 20 minutes' walk from where I am right

    Before I can do anything more, Alan responds that he has phoned the guy and
    that he has made an appointment to go see him the next day. This is what sets
    this forum aside from all others. Collectors (or are they accumulators?) who
    would go the extra mile to assist others.

    What's a fair price? MF would know, but he is on vacation…. So I simply tell
    Alan that he needs to go check the watch out - and if it's in the same
    condition as what the photos depict, to please secure it for me. Alan not
    being a pocket watch guy says " how do I know if it 's in good condition " I
    say " please check that the enamel inlay in the case is all intact with no
    chips or missing pieces
    ". Of course, I also tell Alan " you need to
    negotiate me a better price!

    It's the next day, and my phone rings. A nervous Alan. " I 'm here at the
    guy, the watch looks good, but it's not an enamel dial. I already told the
    fellow that you know all about these vintage IWC's and that he should not
    argue with you
    ". " No, No, Alan " - I say in vane " enamel inlay - not
    enamel dial, It 's OK, go ahead and make him an offer
    " and Alan says "
    speak to him yourself.
    ", and the next minute I am on the line to the

    And so it is folks, within 3 minutes I made the dealer a much more reasonable
    offer - he got a good deal, I got a good deal and a whole lot of watch. And
    within another 2 minutes I had paid for the watch by PayPal and he had the
    payment in his account, and Alan had the watch in his pocket (where of course
    all good pocket watches belong!)

    Another email to the Heritage Club in Schaffhausen and a positive response -

    Confirmed: It 's the Twin Brother.
    Quote by Mr. David Seyffer IWC Museum Curator: " The two movements (#726377
    & 726380) were indeed shipped together May 14th 1920 to Henry Blank.
    really can call Henry Blank Mr "77" … he really
    was engaged with that movement.

    - older than 35 *
    - 94 years after they shipped.

    fraternal twins will have about the same physical likeliness as any
    - they sure do, both are Cal. 77 's only one without a little thingamajigi
    sticking out at the bottom (the seconds hand).

    they 're pretty easy to tell apart especially when they're both of opposite

    • Yes one male the other female.

    And so it is - the twins are after being born just about 2-3 hours apart, are
    re-united again

    when the Delivery to me took Place at a GTG in London when Alan and his
    wife came over to the

    [Click Here to go to Part # 3 - the final Chapter](/t/i-have-a-dream-part-3-a


  • Master
    8 Sep 2014, 9:31 p.m.

    Simply an unbelievable tale Mr. Levinsohn.
    And Gandalf (read Alan, with the grey beard) did indeed appear. I was at the edge of my seat reading the finishing part of this story.

    What a deserving owner - major congrats my friend!

    PS! You have to bring both so I can see them the next time we meet!

    All the best - Skule

  • Master
    8 Sep 2014, 9:44 p.m.

    An amazing story, an amazing journey, an amazing detective story, and so well told and documented. I look forward to seeing the twins upon my next visit to The Netherlands (coming up in Dec). Too bad I will miss you on my end of September visit to the Continent.

  • Master
    8 Sep 2014, 9:45 p.m.

    Thrilled to participate in this reveal and gratified that I didn't screw it up. Mark is the Master!!

  • Master
    9 Sep 2014, 12:19 a.m.

    What an amazing find. An in incredible match...
    And a beautiful watch too
    Well done Mark

  • Master
    9 Sep 2014, 12:43 a.m.

    Thang, I might "wear" the sister piece in my waistcoat pocket whilst she is housed in her temporary case - but if you think I'm ever going to wear a pendant watch on a chain round my neck...you got another thing coming!

  • Master
    9 Sep 2014, 1:02 a.m.

    I was also privileged to have held and examined this beautiful pocket watch last week. Mark, you are an extraordinary collector.

  • Master
    9 Sep 2014, 1:43 a.m.

    Mark, thanks for an amazing story, and I hope you will have it published formally in a journal or such like!

  • Master
    9 Sep 2014, 4:35 a.m.

    Amazing! As you know, I love this stuff, and believe it or not, I was slightly involved in the following way:

    I too have been looking a long time for a Cal 77 - had one once actually and was too stupid to keep it - sent it back to the seller - long story - will tell you later.

    Anyway, this watch you purchased was for sale for quite a while and the sales copy never mentioned it contained a Cal 77. Eventually, I wrote the seller, explaining that he might sell the watch quicker if he listed it as a Cal 77, explaining a bit the history and desirability of the movement and the case manufacturer. He politely replied "Thanks" and went on to re-list the watch several more times without ever changing his copy. I lost track from that point until I noticed one day it was gone. I think it's great that it ended up with you! Had I known you were looking, you could have made this report much sooner.

    Great story, and I still hope you find a relative, or at least Jones' bones!


  • Master
    9 Sep 2014, 5:36 a.m.

    What a GREAT story Mark. :)


  • 9 Sep 2014, 7:04 a.m.

    These posts make the Forum the place to be for IWC collectors.

  • Master
    9 Sep 2014, 7:07 a.m.

    Great story, great find. Compliments Mark.

  • Connoisseur
    9 Sep 2014, 8:02 a.m.

    The Story f the year. You are our men.

  • Master
    9 Sep 2014, 8:17 a.m.

    Now I'm impressed. I mean really impressed. :-)
    Your curiosity and tenacity are remarkable. This forum is enriched by your participation.
    Terrific story. Looking forward to your next project.

  • Master
    9 Sep 2014, 8:18 a.m.

    Mark - Thanks for the great story! - Tracy

  • Master
    9 Sep 2014, 11:22 a.m.

    What a wonderfull story. Again thanks for sharing. These are the kind of stories that make this forum so special....

  • Master
    9 Sep 2014, 11:48 a.m.

    The final delivery was so understated versus the history of this piece. It is in such good condition that we could not open the back to admire the movement, I have yet to see a c77 in person. So Mark, detective extraordinaire, we need photos of the movement.
    There is a little twist that Mark forgot to highlight. Obviously the original shipment into the USA all those years ago, was by sea and years later Alan and Bonnie arrived into the UK not by air but after a cruise and that is how Mark is it's new owner. I am glad it is with such a dedicated collector who is the new custodian.