Elgin watch dating
The table below with the serial numbers and years has be compiled from many sources and I believe it to be reasonably accurate, However, no table like this can be completely accurate because Elgin didn't produce watches in sequential order.
There was no standard across the industry and individual watchmakers may change codes over the years.
A lot of information can be determined about your Elgin watch from just the serial number on the movement (where the gears are).
For example, at the bottom of this web page is a table that can tell you approximately what year your watch was made.
People would go to the local jewelry store, pick out a watch movement that they liked, and then with the money left over, they would pick out a watch case.
Or, if they were more interested in fashion than the watch's time keeping ability, they would pick out a case they liked and used the money left over for the watch movement.
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While it is open, make sure you record everything written on the movement of the watch and the watch case. A good description of how to open a pocket watch case and background information can be found here, thanks to the work of Kent Singer.