Posts Tagged ‘Ephraim W. Morse’

20th June
written by Richard

Otay commenced yesterday the work of making time . . . machinery and tools for the Otay Watch Factory were completed on Wednesday, and yesterday the wheels went round, the operators were in place, and watch making began in earnest, it is hoped for many years to come. —San Diego Union, February 7, 1890.

Watchmaking is seldom regarded as an American industry but more than a century ago U.S. innovation in manufacturing was producing quality pocket watches that competed well against the handmade products of the English and Swiss. In towns like Elgin and Rockford, Illinois, watchmaking became a profitable industry. In the 1880s, investors from the Midwest and San Diego decided to bring the “Elgin experience” to the new town of Otay, where they hoped a successful watchmaking plant would engineer growth in the South Bay community.

The story of the Otay Watch Company.

The Otay Watch Works.