082614_Jimmy-hoffa-waltham-hed

With Labor Day weekend coming up, we thought we’d spend this Tuesday delving into the mystery behind unionized labor’s most iconic figure: Jimmy Hoffa.

Or, rather, the mystery behind this rare vintage watch bearing his likeness that we stumbled upon…

082614_Jimmy-hoffa-waltham-1Jimmy Hoffa took presidency of the Teamsters union from 1958 to 1964, which dates this watch to about 1960.

082614_Jimmy-hoffa-waltham-2In the spirit of American labor, he commissioned Massachusetts-born watchmakers Waltham to make the timepieces—only available for purchase by union members. (Though, at the time, Waltham was dealing with its own battles with the Federal Trade Commission after being bought by a consortium of investors based in Chicago, Delaware and Switzerland.)

082614_Jimmy-hoffa-waltham-3And in a fitting legacy to Hoffa’s enigmatic demise, these watches have all but disappeared as well.

CONTRIBUTORS

  • Kempt Staff