The history of gold watches basically mimics the history of watches themselves. According to Wikipedia, the first time pieces began in the 16th century Germany. These watches were not small wrist watches, but more in size in between a clock and a watch. These "clock-watches" were sometimes made of gold and were used for jewelry and status, or nobility.
By the 17th century men began to wear gold watches in their pockets, as early watches exposed to the elements often affected their ability to function accurately and properly over a sustained period of time.
Wrist watches were invented in the middle ages but did not become mainstream until the 1800's. Wrist watches were very functional, and used by militaries before they became commonplace amongst consumers.
Accuracy improved with the invention of the "balance spring" gold watch. Balance spring watches were invented in 1657 and improved the accuracy of the watch tremendously.
Further innovations in gold watches occurred in the 18th century with temperature compensation, chronometers, and the lever escapement.
The 1800's brought mass production of watches, and wrist watches became extremely popular in the early 1900's. Rolex began operations in 1905 and officially registered the trademark in 1908.
Other luxury watch manafucturers like Cartier followed suit. Gold watches continue to be the prestige of the watch world in modern times, as Apple's most expensive smart watch is made of 18K rose gold.
Gold watch history is still being made today as innovations in technology enable more digital functionality to the fashionable gold watch market.
Continue to Gold Watch Image