The History of Rolex
Although Rolex is Switzerland’s top watchmaking brand, its illustrious history actually began in England back in 1905. Founded by Hans Wilsdorf in conjunction with his brother-in-law Alfred Davis, the company first of all specialised in the distribution of wristwatches that used movements imported from Switzerland but were assembled and cased in London. Wilsdorf’s trendsetting nature that came to define the entire brand appeared very early on in the company’s lifespan – promoting wristwatches (or wristlet watches as they were known) at a time when the majority of men were still relying on pocket watches.
When it first started out, the firm was named Wilsdorf & Davis, however Wilsdorf always knew he wanted to come up with a moniker that was short, easy to say in multiple languages and would look good on dials and watch movements. The task was arduous. In fact, Wilsdorf himself stated that he tried “combining the letters of the alphabet in every possible way. This gave me some hundred names, but none of them felt quite right. One morning, while riding on the upper deck of a horse-drawn omnibus along Cheapside in the City of London, a genie whispered ‘Rolex’ in my ear.”
With the name issue resolved, the newly-Christened Rolex brand first concentrated on the quality of the watch movements. This dedication bore fruit in 1910 when one of their watches was the first in the world to receive the Swiss Certificate of Chronometric Precision. Four years later, the brand was honoured again when the Kew Observatory in Great Britain gave one of their timepieces a class “A” precision certificate – an accolade that up until that point had been given exclusively to marine chronometers. The company relocated to Geneva in 1919 and trademarked their iconic logo in 1925.
A Brand of Innovation
Just one year later, in 1926, Rolex brought out the first of its many groundbreaking timepieces with the “Oyster”. The watch was hailed as the first waterproof and dustproof product, thanks to its hermetically sealed case that protects the delicate movements inside. To demonstrate its capabilities, Rolex enlisted the service of English Channel swimmer Mercedes Gleitze to wear the watch around her neck during one of her swims. The strategy clearly worked, as the timepiece became wildly popular and inspired an entire collection.
In 1954, the company introduced the Rolex GMT-Master that was designed with the requirements of flight crews in mind, thanks to its dual-time capabilities. 1955 saw the release of the Rolex Reference 6234 Chronograph, which has since become a valuable rarity given the fact it was made before the brand became Daytona’s official timekeeper. Then, just a year later, Rolex unveiled the groundbreaking DayDate, which featured a date and day that changed automatically. Finally, in 1963, the company released the Cosmograph Reference 6239, which was designed with a large tachymeter scale on the bezel in keeping with the needs of racecar drivers.
Since the very beginning, Rolex set out to be a complete break from the norm – something that it has clearly achieved with its many breakthroughs. When you wear a Rolex watch, you know that you’re wearing a unique piece of history.
Pre-owned Rolex Watches from Blowers Jewellers
Blowers Jewellers is dedicated to giving our clients the opportunity to own the watch of their dreams. We will work with you to work out exactly what you are looking for from your ideal timepiece and recommend what we believe is the perfect one for you.
We stock a wide range of pre-owned men’s and women’s Rolex watches in both a used and unused condition. Each unique piece is hand chosen by ourselves and comes with a warranty of between 12 months right up to five years. All of our pre-owned Rolex watches are available to be viewed at our boutique in Hull, or by appointment at our London Mayfair office.
Blowers Jewellers can even help if you are looking to sell your old Rolex watch. We offer a generous part exchange service to help you purchase your ideal Rolex timepiece, or can buy it outright from you if you so desire. If this is of interest, simply send us the details of your Rolex watch and we will send you a valuation of what we believe is the best possible price within just 48 hours of receiving your request.
Over the years, Blowers Jewellers has cultivated a reputation for quality and reliability from both our clients and within the industry as a whole. We believe that buying your ideal timepiece should be an unforgettable experience, which is why we provide independent and experienced advice to guide you every step of the way.
For more information about how Blowers can help you own your ideal Rolex watch, contact a member of our team today or visit us in person. We will do everything we can to assist.