Early Watch Manufacturing In Geneva And Neuchâtel

In 1760, two Vaud watch masters, Adol and Bernard, who had learned craftsmanship in Geneva, successfully established a watch company in Bern. At the beginning of the factory, they encountered serious problems. Short of funds and fierce commercial competition, the factory had to change hands to another Michaud from Vaud, and soon moved to Wichit town. The establishment of this factory symbolized an important attempt by the movement craftsmen to freely manufacture clocks in Vaud to escape the control of Geneva. But the company closed soon, for a simple reason, because outside of Geneva, it was difficult to find professional worker parts suppliers and skilled watchmakers.

   In 1775, many people have publicly issued a request to “Lemon’s Lake”, which is the area around Lake Geneva, which is well-known, “requesting the abolition of various ordinances issued by the“ Watch Industry Association ”not long ago. The irreversible severance of economic contact with the Geneva watch industry. The division of labor in the watch manufacturing process previously implemented can be unaffected and does not need to be changed. However, the overall manufacturing of the Swiss watch industry will be greatly expanded, and not only will it It is confined to Geneva. But this desire is far from being implemented as fast as expected. In the eastern part of Geneva, only the Jura region’s movement manufacturing industry stands out and has established an unshakable position. With solid steps, Permanent. The concept of cooperative production promoted by the ‘Clock Industry Association’ has not spread to this high mountain, relying on the outstanding contributions of the masters of clock masters with outstanding skills, and the unremitting efforts of core business people, the art of clocks Already deeply rooted in the villages and towns of the Holy Cross in Rugu, watchmaking masters abound here We only include one of the last name, the reader can understand the overall strength of the natural land, this one is Charles Auguste than the cover.

   The first thing the craftsmen are best at is a variety of movements, various ‘spring-snatch-and-alarm’ devices, large and small gears and wire rods of various sizes. The high level of the product convinced the Genevans to take it orally, and it won high prestige throughout the Nassdale region. For the emerging watch industry, the Jura mountain range in eastern Switzerland seems to be a “fengshui treasure” given by God, without any fetters, but I hope it can flourish and thrive. The mountainous land is short and hungry, and there are few natural products. The local people are poor but ingenious. The natural environment created by nature makes people here easily join the ‘smart and smart’ industry. In the long history before, people were engaged in ‘iron work’ or precious metal processing, and clock production is a traditional product in the local area. Extensive woven lace and printed fabrics in the Nassdale Valley and Mid-levels.

   All these have created the dexterous fingers of the local people, and they are more familiar with the clock and watch industry. When the first watchmaking workshop was set up here, apprentices were not required to practice the sensitivity of their fingers at all, because they each had a pair of ‘precision’ hands beyond imagination. The founder of the watchmaking road in both the Rockler and Lime Kiln areas was the famous Daniler who made Richard and since then the industry has become another important traditional industry in the area. Around 1785, the movement craftsmen settled in the Waldtravel region. The watch manufacturing industry in Nassadere was in Geneva’s sights, but it was ‘out of reach’, and it has developed tremendously. And continued to the east, reaching the town of Ergay on the French-Swedish border. During the second half of the eighteenth century until 1830, the town was a “reservation area” for the Nasadere watch industry.
   The artisans inside and outside Geneva clearly divided their work. At the beginning of the win-win situation of movement manufacturing and component assembly, the Geneva City Watch Association accepted this production process and method, and made a lot of profit. . The artisans in the city have left to themselves the most important, most critical, and of course, the most profitable processes. Here is an example: At the end of the eighteenth century, the average daily wage of an assembly master was outside the city. Six times the coresmith. In addition, this mode of production keeps the relatively low price of watch products, and enables the Geneva watch industry to operate normally.

   The only thing that is disturbing is competition from abroad. In 1763, several brothers of the Cassdale family in the Bourg-en-Bryce region of France wrote to King Louis: ‘The trade in watches and clocks in Geneva must be destroyed because this trade receives a huge amount of money from the Kingdom of France every year. Wealth. For this reason, a brand new watch company should be established outside Switzerland, and only the parts of Geneva watches should be imported, and then the French nationals will start to assemble it themselves. The production of watches with extremely low prices during the service period will completely disable the competitiveness of Geneva products. ‘. King Louis XVI of France fully agreed with this suggestion, and specifically issued a decree and officially ordered the construction to begin immediately. It is a good idea to start a new watch company to compete with Geneva, but it is not easy to implement, and the cost is very high. In the end, although some products were made and marketed, the price was still three times that of Geneva watches. According to the 1788 inhabitants survey, there were no official watchmaker titles in the Geneva area, but there were more than 600 foreign exiles still engaged in watchmaking. The ‘civilian’ movement craftsmen expanded unlimitedly and freely, first spreading to the outskirts of Geneva, then the towns of Rex and Fossini, and then down to the Savoie region and the Voula mountain in the Jura mountain. The capital is Lausanne. But in any case, Geneva has always been the confluence and collection center for watch parts in these regions.
    During the ups and downs of the French Revolution, because of a series of rebellious acts of ‘disordering anyway,’ many of the ‘privileged’ privileges were completely overthrown. The same ‘rebellion’ scene happened in Geneva near by. The movement craftsmen took the opportunity to ‘make waves and make waves,’ trying to liberate from the suffocation of the ‘industry guild’. Faced with a political movement that may end its monopoly privileges, the ‘Clock Industry Association’ will not budge, uniting all its members more and more closely and resolutely protecting its vested interests, even at the cost of the destruction of the entire clock industry At any cost. They declared: ‘The work system previously implemented between major workshops and factories is a comprehensive and long-term system, which is a settled fact and cannot be changed.’

  The ‘Industry Guild’ responded tit-for-tat to the challenges of the ‘rebels’, who demanded to maintain a certain level of equality among all watchmakers and reduce unnecessary competition between them. The ‘Industry Guild’ launched a fierce and stubborn counterattack across the country. The fighting originated in Geneva, and then it was launched in Basel, Nassdale, Bern, Soler and other places. One is more stringent than the other, one is stricter than the other, and one after another, rushing to the villages where foreign exiles gather, and where the ‘civilian’ population predominates. The purpose of the fight was only one: ‘to maintain the privilege of the Watch Association in the economic sphere.’ Many practitioners who had studied skills in Geneva and later became watchmakers or ‘first-class cooperative apprentices’, because they did not get the ideal development in the city, began to migrate to areas where the ‘bourgeoisie’ concentrated, trying to find new places Try your luck.
   At that time, watchmaking in the Nachadale region became the most profitable industry, and the situation in Vaud, another important center in the Jura Mountains, was similar. The craftsmen and masters of the two places can make all kinds of mechanical products as they wish. The brothers of the Mois Villermere family from Sagne village settled in the town of Tramland as ‘watchmakers’. David from Hexili also settled down in the script town, specializing in the manufacture of parts for the movement and the hand drive. The movement workshop of the Frésad family in Viellet opened in 1765. Later, a movement craftsman named Burkin was officially registered there, and he can still be found on the craftsman’s roster name. Movement workshops sprung up on this land like a ‘spring sprout,’ in Gultrali, St. Emil, Renan, Courgemont, everywhere. The situation described above is an overview of the Swiss watch industry during the French Revolution. Geneva has always maintained the ‘unstoppable’ central position, the center of elegant products, the center of products demanded by kings and nobles. The first choice of all products produced here is undoubtedly ‘luxury art’. The city does not produce movements, but can be sourced from the outskirts of Geneva and the surrounding Rex, Fossini, and Rugu valleys.

   Ru Guyin is located on the dividing line between the two forces, which not only meets the procurement needs of the city of Geneva, but also attracts the attention of a newly-rising watch center, Nasadare. The new center is not only the center of watch manufacturing, but It has also become the center of the watch trade. This center, which has risen in the mountains of Nassadere, will purchase a large number of semi-finished products from the east and south of the Jura region in the coming years. If the first center, Geneva’s products, is positioned as the center of ‘aristocratic elegant watches’, then the second center is the distribution center of ‘bourgeois’ watches. Because the latter did not have commercial priority, the free trade system made the ‘luxury clocks’ in that place not take any advantage, and the process and method of division of production seemed to be more suitable for them. It is also because of this division of labor that the Swiss watch manufacturing industry extends from Calvin’s city, Geneva, to the small town of Modir in the hinterland of the Jura Mountains. The watch industry employs about 10,000 practitioners. Half of them work in the city of Geneva. If calculated in proportion to the value created, this half produces far more value than the other half.

   The ever-changing watchmaking skills still use a lot of traditional tools, such as vices, hand pliers, tweezers of different sizes, small saws of different thicknesses, extrusion dies, and so on. It is also because of this working method that the production process of the movement is more perfected, and new gear cutting tools, flat gear grinders, ‘transmission chain sesame chain’ processing machines, gear quenching satin burners, and gear axis correction instruments have been produced. , Gear shaper, etc., etc., etc. Nowadays, the various processes of gear manufacturing, such as satin forming, and tooth polishing, are performed by professionals. Another technology worth mentioning, always occupies a ‘significant position’, which is the manufacture of watchmaking tools.

  When it comes to drilling holes in the movement’s original billet, the earliest craftsmen used the original manual ‘drilling bow’ and later changed it to a ‘pedal head’ drilling lathe. The professional needs of craftsmen in various processes are increasing, and they are becoming more and more detailed. The improvement and progress of watchmaking tools are ‘advancing with the times and becoming more sophisticated every day.’ To the needs of artisans. According to the earliest statistics, the average production volume of each Swiss watchmaker is 24 pieces per year, or two per month. However, in the initial stage of the implementation of the division of labor production system, the production volume was two per week, then four, and finally six or more. This shows the special advantages and advantages of this system.