Crafted and introduced in 1928 as a watch for men, the Prince is one of the more unique and extravagant Rolex timepieces. It was made with a stylish rectangular case rather than the standard circular one, which caught the public’s attention instantaneously. The most interesting feature was an eye-catching dual dial, with the top dial displaying hours and minutes while the lower one displayed seconds.
Many styles of the Rolex Prince have been circulated throughout the years. Among the original styles to be introduced was the Classic Rolex Prince, Model 1343, which featured a rectangular case and a dual dial. It was made available in gold or sterling silver.
The Brancard Rolex Prince entered the markets alongside the Classic Rolex Prince but featured a much more extravagant design. Available in single or two-tone gold and sterling silver, it caught the attention of consumers everywhere. By the 1930’s, the Brancard line was extended to include Models 971U and 971A. Model 971U was available in gold and sterling silver while its sister model was available with two-tone gold stripes over the top of case, which came to be known as the tiger stripe. In 1934, an all-steel model was added to the Brancard line. The final model of the Brancard line was a solid platinum wristwatch, which became one of Rolex’s more expensive timepieces.
Introduced in 1935 was the Rolex Railway Prince, named because of its stepped sides that resembled a locomotive. Made with steel and presenting a hand-wound movement, the Railway Prince exemplified classy simplicity.
The Rolex Quarter Century Club Prince is indeed a special Prince model, having been designed for a leading Canadian department store chain known as the Eaton Company. Engraved with “1/4 Century Club” along the top dial, this unique and collectible timepiece earned its name because it had been presented as a memento to the employees who had served the Eaton Company for 25 years. To further recognize these hardworking employees, each individual watch had the name of the worker and the amount of years they had contributed to the Eaton Company engraved on the case back.
The Rolex Sporting Prince is one of Rolex’s rarest pocket watches. Used often during sporting events, especially in golf, its most unique feature was the hunting case. Once the case was opened, a spring loaded mechanism that ensured protection against external disturbances during the events would jump into action. In later years, the Sporting Prince was recreated into a wristwatch form. Due to the rarity of both styles of the Sporting Prince, collectors worldwide constantly seek them out.
The most current version of the Prince is available in handsome yellow gold, beautiful white gold, and breathtaking everose gold. Several dial options are available as well, to include Rayon flame de la gloire with Arabic numerals, clou de paris with Roman or Arabic numerals, and silver godron with Roman numerals, all of which include a small second hand at the six o’clock position and a hand wound movement.
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