Henry Richard Blastland’s Watch
A vintage watch is not just a little mechanical machine that tells you what the time is. A vintage watch is much more than that. Sometimes a friend in lonely times, or a companion whilst traveling the world. It may be a tool to impress your associates or a symbol of your success. If you own a watch for decades, it becomes a part of your stories. You might remember looking at your watch to see what time it was when your child was born, or when a beloved one passed away. Key moments in your life are often related to time, and therefore your watch.
Just as with me, almost every watch collector enjoys reading letters from or looking at pictures of the original owner. It is a significant added value that is hard to express in monetary terms. One thing is certain, a watch with additional information and documents fetches higher prices at auction.
This particular piece is a perfect example of a watch with a story. There is lots of additional documents that tell us what this watch has seen and why it was so special to its original owner; Henry Richard Blastland.
It is quite rare to find a watch that comes with so much extra information. Most of the time, the original owner has passed away and his or her relatives have to decide whether to keep or sell the watch. If they do come to the conclusion someone else might appreciate the watch more than they can and they decide to sell the watch, it is common that the watch is sold without all this extra personal information. People often think, why would anybody be interested in the pictures of the original owner? Very simple, the moment a watch is separated from all these documents is the moment a story gets lost. Without all the extra paperwork, this watch would have left my collection a week after I acquired it. It would be a simple 9 carat gold Gerrard dress watch worth around approximately 250 euros.
Now, when I look at this watch, I know that this watch has been a friend to Henry Richard Blastland. They have lived a lifelong friendship built on trust. This watch did not only stand for the friendship between the watch and its owner, but for the friendship between the owner and the men who gave it to him. It stands for his passion of flying his airplane. It stands for the reward of dedication towards a unique pact. This watch stands for so much more to Henry than we’ll ever know.
This watch is way more than just a watch.
^ Personal inscription for 20 years of service
^ The De Havilland Enterprise union
^ The aircraft Henry flew