Sunday, December 25, 2011

Chapter 3: Panerai & The Italian Royal Navy [Part 5 of 5]


Note: I am still working on this story and when it is completed, I will remove this notice.

Hi Everybody!!!

I hope you are all having a great holiday season!!! I have a special treat for you on this Christmas day!!! John Goldberger is one of the worlds leading horological experts and each year he puts together an amazing calendar that he sends out to all his friends as a Christmas gift, and unfortunately you can't purchase the calendar, but on Jake's Rolex World you can download John Goldberger's 2012 Panerai Calendar for free as a PDF.


John Goldberger's 2012 Panerai Calendar is filled with amazingly rare vintage Panerai watches and I am adding them to this story so you can see them below without having to download the PDF. John Goldberger has authored many horological book including 100 Superlative Rolex Watches, and he also publishes the amazing Vintage Rolex HD app for the iPad.



The Complete History Of
The Rolex Submariner & SEA-DWELLER
Rolex's Conquest Of The Ocean

Chapter 3: Panerai & The Italian Royal Navy
The First Professional Rolex Diving Watch
[Part 5 of 5]


Back To The Begining


Everything in this story is new to Jake's Rolex World and the web. In other words, none of the images or significantly historical images in this story have ever been published–anywhere. I decided to add this story as Part 5 of Chapter 3 of The Complete History Of The Rolex Submariner & SEA-DWELLER.

As I mentioned in the introduction, John Goldberger is one of the worlds leading horological experts and he is sharing all the amazing Panerai images in this story with you, but there is ONE MORE THING...and this is absolutely MIND-BOGGLING!!! He also is allowing me to share the next three previously undocumented and unpublished documents that will forever change the course of Rolex and Panerai history!!! These first 3 historically significant Rolex invoices come from the collection of Francesco Ferretti.

If you are not familiar with Panerai watches, it is important to understand that Rolex made all the vintage Panerai watches, beginning in 1936, and running all the way up to at least 1956. If you are not familiar with Panerai history, I highly recommend you read the first 4 parts of Chapter 3: Panerai & The Italian Royal Navy, and if you are feeling ambitious, you can always start at the beginning of The Complete History Of The Rolex Submariner & SEA-DWELLER.


The Rolex-Panerai Receipts

If you are a vintage Rolex or Panerai enthusiast you are in for the surprise of a lifetime!!! Over the years, there has been a lot of speculation put forth about the origins of the Rolex-Panerai relationship. Specifically, nobody has ever been able to put together all the pieces of the puzzle so they fit perfectly–not until today.


Panerai Reference 2533

We begin with this first historical Rolex-Panerai document which is a paid Rolex invoice dated June 13th, 1936 for the sale of 19 Panerai Reference 2533 watches. Notice Panerai is misspelled at "PANERAJ."

Image appears courtesy of Francesco Ferretti Panerai Collection

The next two images below, show the front and back of the Panerai Reference 2533 along with the Rolex movement inside the opened case back. Over the years, people have speculated as to whether or not these Panerai Referece 2533 watches with the unusual dial were real.

They speculated they were not correct because the dial designs did not match any of the other Panerai classic 3, 6, 9, 12 dial design language, or the classic California Dial design language.

It turns out they are real and the Rolex invoice from June 13, 1936 (pictured above) confirms this fact. There are only 2 known examples of this early prototype and they are owned by Francesco Ferretti who is one of the most important vintage Panerai connoisseurs in the world. They are located in his museum located in his new showroom in Montecatini Terme, PT. This next image shows one of the first Rolex made Panerai Reference 2533 prototype models that is referenced in the invoice above.


1936 Panerai Reference 2533 47mm
First Prototype


This next image shows the backside of the Rolex made Panerai Reference 2533. The case back has been removed for this photo to expose the Rolex movement.


This next invoice is dated November 20th, 1937 and it illustrates a waterproof free service for 3 watches. Apparently the first Rolex made Panerai Reference 2533's had a lot of water-proofing challenges).

Image appears courtesy of Francesco Ferretti Panerai Collection


This next Rolex invoice is dated March 7, 1939 for the sale of 15 more Reference 2533 Panerai watches. The translation reads "Oyster steel special for divers, (dials supplied by the house PANERAJ), without leather bracelets, or boxes." So Rolex delivered the watches assembled, with Panerai dials on the watches, but without straps or boxes. Also on the invoice you notice Rolex misspelled PANERAI and instead typed "PANERAJ" twice.


Image appears courtesy of Francesco Ferretti Panerai Collection



This next historical image shows Italian Navy Captain, Mario Giorgini standing in front of Italian Dictator, Benito Mussolini who is standing next to the King of Italy, Vittorio Emanuele III. The Panerai Reference 2533 on top of the photo comes from the family of the Italian Navy Captain, Mario Giorgini (pictured below). Note the original Panarai buckle (still attached to the watch) was made out of nickel-plated brass with chamfered edges.




1940 Panerai Reference 3646 47mm
Radiomir Panarai Dial




1942 Panerai Reference 3646 47mm
Blank Dial Designation




1942 Panerai Reference 3646 47mm
Blank California Dial




1943 Mare Nostrum Prototype Chronograph 52mm
Radiomir Panerai Mare Nostrum Dial



1954 Panerai Reference 6154 47mm
Small Egiziano with Radiomir Panerai Dial Designation




1955 Panerai Reference 6152-1 47mm
Radiomir Panerai Dial Designation




1955 Panerai Reference 6152-1 47mm
First Panerai with trademark Half-Moon Crown Guard
Radiomir Panerai Dial Designation




1955 Panerai Reference 6152-1 47mm
Marina Militare Dial Designation




1956 Panerai Reference 6152-1 47mm
Marina Militare Top Dial Designation
with
Luminor Panerai Lower Dial Designation
Second Hand Complication at 9 O'Clock




1956 Panerai Reference 2/56 60mm
Radiomir Panerai Dial Designation
8 Giorni Brevettato [8 Days Patented]
50 Examples Made for Egyptian Navy Commandos




1961 Panerai Reference 3646 47mm
Luminor Panerai Dial with Seconds Hand




1993 Panerai Reference 5218-201 44mm
Luminor Panerai Prototype with OP Logo


I sincerely hope you enjoyed part 5 of this story, and yes, as time permits, in the future, I plan to complete and Publish Part 6 of this fascinating story, so stay tuned...

Jake :-)


2 comments:

Ravelli said...

Simply amazing this post!! I've found this blog looking for Panerai history and your chapters are amazing, keep up the good work!!!

Cheers!

russ yarrow said...

Your work is so awesome, thank you. I never get tired of tying my collection back to the original DNA. Life is not made up of data, but stories.

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