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The Pocket Watch Finds a Home in Levi Jeans

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We have such a rich history surrounding the American Pocket Watch! From historical railroad disasters, to the most simple items or expressions we use in our everyday life's.
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We have such a rich history surrounding the American Pocket Watch! From historical railroad disasters, to the most simple items or expressions we use in our everyday life's.



How about “on the ball”? which goes back to Webb C. Ball. He was commissioned by the railroad officials as their "General Time Inspector" in order to establish precision standards and a reliable timepiece inspection system for Railroad Watches (1894).



One of my favorites is the story of Levi and Strauss and the Riveted Denims / Jeans. Levi and Strauss filed the first patent for riveted jeans in 1850. Most men in the day were making a living from agriculture, the railroad, iron to cotton factories, and gold mining in the west, in those days the west was still the new frontier. Please keep in mind there was little electricity no paved roads and yes still no automobiles. Many of the things we take for granted not been even be invented yet.



This called for very strong clothing and Mr. Levi and Mr. Strauss stood up to the challenge. Their first patent was for a 4 pocket riveted blue denim. These jeans had two front pockets and one back right pocket. Of most interest is what they referred to as third pocket called a riveted inside flap pocket. I know you can guess what that pocket was constructed for? Yes a pocket watch! The pocket watch was taking hold as a mainstay in daily life and reflected a degree of status.





Till this day Levi and Strauss have never left that third pocket off any denims. It was not until 1900 that Levi and Strauss applied for the patented 5 pocket jeans with the additional fifth pocket on the back left side.



It was not until the 1950’s that Levi and Strauss began to call the third pocket a change / pocket watch pocket. Please keep in mind through the 1940’s pocket watches where still a part of daily life, the public started moving toward wrist watches in the 1950’s and wrist watches did not obtain the same degree of accuracy as a fine pocket watch until the 1990’s!



Thank you for joining us on this journey through American history and marvels that were invented as the mother of necessity,



Jeff, The Pocket Watch Guy

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