My grandfather, who I was named after, was born in Indiana in 1896. After fighting in the “Great War,” he returned to Indiana where he ran several businesses and raised his family. Rumors were that he had two families.
The clan had its share of characters back in the day.
At some point along his journey he acquired a watch. An Elgin pocket watch. A railroad watch. No one seems to know the exact story surrounding of how he came by this watch. He could have bought it or he could have taken it in trade for some of the many cigars he sold in his “City Club.”
Although it was gold-filled, it wasn’t one of those fancy watches used to mark social status. The ornate ones with jewels that weren’t part of the mechanism. No special engraving. No hand-painted or enamel designs. No animated scenes or characters turning in coordination with the hands.
No, this watch was used to tell time.
When my dad graduated high school, granddad sat my father down and explained that dad had reached a point in his life where he earned some recognition. He was now old enough and responsible enough to receive a precious gift. A timepiece to mark a rite of passage.
And so the watch was passed on to its first successor guardian.