For more than 130 years
Pioneering, practical, precise: Hamilton uses a unique combination of Swiss precision and American spirit to create distinctive, versatile watches for aficionados and style conscious individuals alike.
Hamilton has a long history and has achieved numerous milestones, all of which have contributed to making Hamilton the strong, internationally renowned watch brand it is today.
Hamilton was founded in Lancaster, Pennsylvania and began producing pocket watches. Since its founding, quality and accuracy have been at the heart of its vision, and these principles have made Hamilton the internationally renowned watch brand it is today.
The railroad and locomotive forever changed the history of the United States. In the early days of American railroads, there was no common method of timing and accidents were frequent. The precision of Hamilton pocket watches helped solve this problem and our timepieces soon received the title: The Watch of Railroad Accuracy.
When it comes to military history, the Hamilton story is one of absolute precision. It was the superior quality and accuracy of Hamilton’s early pocket watches, as well as the ability to innovate and act quickly while maintaining high standards that first caught the attention of the American military back in 1914. The same qualities kept Hamilton at the forefront of supply, earning five prestigious Army-Navy ‘E’ Awards for manufacturing excellence along the way.
Serving the military for over 75 years
1914 As an official supplier to the U.S. Armed Forces during WWI, Hamilton equipped hundreds of soldiers with timepieces reliable at all times during war. This prompted a shift in production from pocket watches to the more convenient wristwatch, a change that was here to stay.
1942 Hamilton stopped producing watches for consumers to focus on the enormous task of supplying the U.S. Armed Forces during WWII.
Between 1942-1945, Hamilton produced over one million timepieces including wristwatches and marine chronometers, even earning an Army-Navy E award for excellence in manufacturing.
Hamilton helped the Navy, not only by producing chronometers, but by designing and building a unique instrument for testing them. According to James W. Gibbs in Pennsylvania Clocks and Watches, ""Hamilton's chronometers were so accurate that the testing procedures at the Naval Observatory were inadequate."" Hamilton's Time Comparator permitted the dial error of a chronometer to be determined within 1/100th of a second per day.
TIMING THE SKIES
More than a century ago, a Hamilton aeronautical watch accompanied the first U.S. Airmail service between Washington, D.C., and New York City. This was the beginning of our long history producing intrumental timepieces for the flying community, and today we continue to fly on the wrists of pilots around the world.
1926 Admiral Richard E. Byrd became the first aviator to reach the North Pole, circling it for 13 minutes before returning to base. This pioneering 15 hour and 57 minute flight was timed by a Hamilton watch.
1927 Pilot watches do a lot more than tell time and our technical advancements helped early aviators arrive safely on the first flight from California to Hawaii. These early aviators relied on the precision of Hamilton watches to make critical calculations of time, distance and direction as they navigated over the Pacific Ocean.
1930s By now renowned for accuracy in flight, Hamilton was the official watch of the four major American commercial airlines of the day. Hamilton was also selected as the official timekeeper for the very first coast-to-coast service from New York to San Francisco.
Partnering with the rescue heroes
2021 Hamilton became the official watch partner of Air Zermatt, the world-famous mountain rescue team. The pilots’ expertise has allowed us to develop timepieces that meet their needs in terms of design and functionality. We’ve had the privilege of providing these heroes with our most capable wristwatches to time their rescue missions.
2022 Hamilton announced its partnership with Air-Glaciers, a rescue team with a powerful dedication to honoring their duties in the mountains. Every second counts when the pilots and navigators are saving lives. Our dependable aviation watches assist the Air-Glaciers pilots in critical moments of rescue missions, ensuring precision timekeeping and reliability in flight.
Linked to the aeronautical world for more than a century, we’re honored to support the most famous sky heroes with our pilot watches integrated with proficient aviation functions and extraordinarily accurate navigation abilities.
We are committed to championing the endeavors of those who think big and strive for more. Supporting game-changing innovation and standing along with pioneers that reinvent our mobility, Hamilton continues to forge the future with the partners that push the boundaries of what is possible.
FLYING INTO THE FUTURE WITH SMARTFLYER
In the world of aerospace, sustainability and efficiency can be game-changing. Together with smartflyer, a pioneer of sustainable, electric-powered air exploration, we are ready to take technology to new heights. The partnership based on shared values such as a sense of adventure and a commitment to accuracy, aims at bringing the air travel to the next level with the SFX1, the hybrid-electric aircraft of tomorrow. At Hamilton, we are dedicated to timing the skies of today, tomorrow and beyond!
BREAKING BARRIERS BETWEEN THE SKY AND THE SEA WITH SYROCO
With a shared passion for discovery and innovation, we support the groundbreaking technology startup Syroco, working together hand in hand towards a new speed sailing record. Named after the ferocious sirocco winds of the Saharan desert, Syroco is designing an innovative wind-powered vehicle with elements of both naval and aviation architecture with the ability to break the 80 knots speed barrier. Thanks to Syroco’s disruptive project, carbon-free transportation is no longer just a vision.
SHAPING THE CHANGE
Game-changing innovation has been one of the pillars of Hamilton’s success with major developments appearing in the mid 20th century that changed the world of watchmaking forever.
Designing an icon
1957 A symbol of innovation and cutting-edge watchmaking, the Ventura changed the watch industry forever. When renowned American industrial designer Richard Arbib first sat down with a blank sheet of paper and was told by Hamilton to design whatever he wanted without regard for practicality, he could never have known that the very first sketch he made would become a 20th century icon that’s still turning heads more than 60 years later.
The world’s first electric watch, the Ventura created an instant sensation and revolutionized the world of watchmaking. Powered by an electromagnetic coil, it was a technological breakthrough, bridging the older world of mechanical watchmaking with that of the quartz movement that would emerge in the 1960s.
Four years later, the triangular-shaped Ventura appeared on the wrist of the global megastar Elvis Presley in his 1961 musical comedy, ‘Blue Hawaii’. Blessed with an immense talent that catapulted him to stardom, Elvis was the superstar of the Rock and Roll revolution whose shockwaves inspired a generation and made him a cultural icon.
THE WATCHMAKER OF FILMAKERS
For almost 90 years, Hamilton has been known as the Movie Brand, prominently featured in more than 500 movies and television shows.
Hamilton watches first appeared on the silver screen in 1932 in the Marlene Dietrich movie ‘Shanghai Express’, a landmark moment where it all began. In 1951, the major Hollywood movie ‘The Frogmen’ featured Hamilton’s military watches taking a leading cinematic role. Ten years later, the Ventura starred on the wrist of the King of of the Rock and Roll Elvis Presley in his musical comedy, ‘Blue Hawaii’.
Since then, Hamilton timepieces have appeared on the silver screen more than 500 times, adding authenticity to the mechanics of the plot and the protagonists. The range of different genres emphasizes the versatility of the Hamilton collection. Our distinctive watches have captured the attention of the world’s leading prop master and costume designers who have chosen them for their historical accuracy or the way they help to define a character.
Hamilton has been trusted not only to provide watches but also to design and produce a unique prop watch, commissioned by a director or producer to create something special to fit a movie storyline. Each custom-made prop timepiece is a result of close collaboration with the movie’s design team.
CREATING A PIECE OF MOVIE HISTORY
One of Hamilton's most impactful Hollywood collaboration was Christopher Nolan's 2014 sci-fi epic ‘Interstellar’. ‘The Murph’ watch, designed and created especially for the movie, is an integral part of the plot and one of the emotional links between the two main characters, lead protagonist Joseph Cooper played by Matthew McConaughey and his daughter Murphy played by Jessica Chastain in adulthood.
Five years later, the custom-made prop watch was brought to life as the Khaki Field Murph, the 42mm spot-on reproduction of the movie timepiece. In 2022, we released a smaller version of the big screen icon, the Khaki Field Murph 38mm.
Men in Black since 1997
FROM ONE ICON TO ANOTHER
Daring, pioneering and ahead of its time, the Hamilton Ventura has played a starring role in every 'Men in Black' movie - as key to their characters as the black suit, wrap around shades and neuralyzer. Featured in 'Men in Black' since 1997, it’s an eye-catching choice that has served the Agents well.
The Hamilton Ventura is now considered an essential part of the iconic uniform. In 2019, the Men in Black returned with a brand-new adventure. Agent M played by Tessa Thompson opted for the Ventura combining stainless steel case, black dial and black leather strap.
Behind the Camera Awards since 2006
HONORING THE OFF-SCREEN TALENT
The Hamilton Behind the Camera Awards in Hollywood demonstrate our commitment to honor the off-screen talent, the outstanding individuals behind movies, who play a pivotal role in making the magic happen.
Inspired by our long-standing heritage in the world of cinema, we honor the unsung heroes of every successful production – the film set crews. These behind-the-scenes talents have a unique opportunity to receive the awards from their A-list colleagues during the black tie ceremony dedicated to the most extraordinary moviemakers of the year.
From synchronizing the first American railroads to inventing both the electric and the digital watch, Hamilton has been at the forefront of groundbreaking developments since 1892. At the start of this new decade, we celebrate the game-changing attitude and pioneering approach that have guaranteed our place in timing changes of the watchmaking world.
Hamilton is a Swiss watch brand with a rich history dating back to 1892. Over the years, the brand has become renowned for creating high-quality, precision timepieces for aviation, military, and cinema industries. Hamilton watches are characterized by their exceptional comfort, durability, and functionality. With a commitment to innovation and performance, Hamilton has brought a unique style and sophistication to the market, making it a favorite among watch enthusiasts and collectors alike.
Hamilton Watch Company is founded in Lancaster, Pennsylvania, USA.
Hamilton becomes the official timekeeper of the US Army, providing military watches during World War I.
Hamilton creates the world's first electric watch, the Hamilton Electric 500.
Hamilton becomes the official timekeeper of commercial airlines TWA and United Airlines.
Hamilton introduces the Ventura, the world's first electric-powered watch with a unique triangular shape.
Hamilton creates the Khaki collection, providing watches for military use as well as civilian adventures.
Hamilton supplies watches for the film “Blue Hawaii”, marking the beginning of a long list of Hamilton watches appearing in Hollywood movies.
Hamilton introduces the Pulsar, the world's first digital watch.
Hamilton becomes part of the Swatch Group, a Swiss conglomerate that owns several other luxury watch brands.
Hamilton celebrates its 130th anniversary
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