A HISTORICALLY IMPORTANT PATEK PHILIPPE PLATINUM AND DIAMOND POCKET WATCH, REF. 600P
The ref. 600 was one of the most popular pocket watch models of Patek Philippe’s 20th century production. Made from the early 1930s until circa 1969, the reference evolved through many different variations and styles. This platinum and baguette version is the most luxurious and most expensive of ref. 600 versions, retailing for 1250 USD in 1946 (compared to 1500 USD for a ref. 1518).
This historically important example, originally bought by Wacky Arnolt, is beautifully preserved as a time capsule from the era. The case, dial and movement are all of the highest quality and it is quite exciting to see such a beautifully preserved, untouched dial from this era as well as a case that is preserved with its original proportions and finish.
The movement features the HOX stamped on the balance cock indicating that this watch was originally exported to the American market. It is quite possible, considering the early date, that this is one of the first Patek Philippe watches that Wacky bought before he started his annual trips to Europe. This example was sold at the famous Chicago retailer, Marshall Field’s, ahead of Christmas 1946. Frango mint, anyone?
Stanley H. “Wacky” Arnolt was a Mid-western entrepreneur who famously imported cars into the US starting in the 1950s after making his fortune during the 1940s making outboard motors for the US war effort during WW2. Known by his nickname ‘Wacky’, Arnolt is one of the most important American Patek Philippe collectors that you may never have heard of. After his death in 1963, his wife Ghean Arnolt became president and executive officer of the family corporation. Today, he is remembered and celebrated for his coveted sports cars, the Arnolt-MG, the Arnolt-Aston, Arnolt-Bentley, and most famously the Arnolt-Bristol. For further reading on Wacky Arnolt, please see this article and this.