This Wednesday, Christie’s will host its Rare Watches and American Icons New York sale with a Cartier Tank owned by Jacqueline Kennedy-Onassis as the main draw. This particular Tank was given to her by her brother-in-law Prince Stanislas “Stas” Radziwill in 1963 with the engraving “Stas to Jackie 23 Feb. 63 2:05 am to 9:35 pm,” referencing the start and stop times of their famous 50-Mile Hike in Palm Beach. The estimate is set at between $60,000-120,000.
Accompanying the timepiece is a painting that Jackie Kennedy completed for “Stas” in honor of the walk’s completion and given to him in return for the watch.
Exactly 250 total watches are up for grabs and the other 249 watches are also quite exceptional.
A 18-karat gold Cartier Twenty Dollar coin watch that was given by Babe Ruth to the NYC gangster Bumpy Johnson, three watches previously owned by Joe DiMaggio including a white-gold Audemars Piguet square-shaped wristwatch, and an 18-karat gold Patek Philippe Ref. 2552 inscribed with the “Golden Rule” that at one time, President Lyndon B. Johnson would give out as a gift. Also up for bid is a 1958 Hamilton Electric model previously owned by President Lyndon B. Johnson that was given to him by the McDowell County Democrats.
Also up for bid is a 1958 Hamilton Electric model previously owned by President Lyndon B. Johnson that was given to him by the McDowell County Democrats.
A 14-karat gold Jaeger-LeCoultre Ref. 2721 Triple Date wristwatch previously owned by Bob Hope is available and is estimated to go for between $25 and 35,000.
For Heuer fans, an extremely rare Autavia with an applied Indianapolis Motor Speedway logo is available and is expected to hit six figures with an estimate between $100,000 and $150,000. Only a few Heuer chronographs are known to bear logos on their dials, and the Indy is the rarest of them all. Many Heuer collectors regard this timepiece as their holy grail. Only two were known to market prior to this one.
While less remarkable than the Indy Autavia, another Autavia is expected to reach a large sum. A very rare “Chronomatic” Autavia is up for bid in both a black and white dial. The white dial is a rarely seen “Jo Siffert” model, given that sobriquet for the popularity the model gained after the race car driver by the same name began wearing it on his wrist. This watch is also the survivor of a motorcycle accident that broke its original owner’s arm so there is a large amount of scuffing and scratching on the bezel.
The rarest of the Rolex Paul Newman chronographs, Ref. 6264, is up for bid for an estimated $400 to 600,000. The 6264 is the last of the Rolex chronographs to feature simple push-down buttons—all later models feature screw-down buttons. This specific model is particularly noteworthy due to the hue of its dial and its overall condition. The “Limoncello” dial color is known for its vibrant shade that has a tendency to vary in each model from bright to faded.
The auction is set to go off in two separate rounds on Wednesday, June 21: at 10:00 a.m., lots 1 through 128 will be auctioned off; at 2:00 p.m., lots 129 through 250 will be up for bid. View more of the timepiece up for bid at Christie’s website.