Their Ohio facilities were also a thing to behold, with architecture that gave it a fairy tale quality.

We work out the trending price by crunching the data on the product’s sale price over the last 90 days.

New refers to a brand-new, unused, unopened, undamaged item, while Used refers to an item that has been used previously.

Since yesterday was the 4th, we figured today would be a good day to briefly talk about an American brand that once was. Gruen produced tons of watches in the 70+ years they were around, some of which are well known and renowned, such as the Curvex and Techni-Quadron models, but generally speaking they are not very collectable and information on specific models is sparse.

A brand that, though one of the original American wristwatch companies, is not often talked about: Gruen. A quick browse on Ebay and you will find that they rarely break $300, though on more curated vintage sites, such as watchestobuy.com, you will find some approaching $2,000.

The history of the brand is very interesting and for a detailed look I recommend reading this thoroughly researched on-line book by Paul Schlisser. Schlisser breaks down the story of Gruen from the arrival of Dietrich Gruen in America to the closing of their Ohio plant, Time Hill, in 1958.

In the time that Gruen was around, they were a truly an innovative watch brand.

They designed and manufactured many of their own movements, some of which had interesting complications, in facilities in Biel, Switzerland called the “Precision Factory” (which are now owned by Rolex, and apparently used as admin facilities).

That said they were a US based company with headquarters in Columbus, Ohio, where they received the movements, and assembled them into American made cases.

Shockingly, the records of the brand pre-1958 were destroyed, which one could only imagine has affected the collectability now as Gruens are difficult to date and price. Even remarkable pre-1958 examples are only a few grand, which is nothing considering their age and uniqueness.

Though models from the post-Ohio days are worth very little, they are not bad watches, and are an affordable way of getting an attractive vintage piece with a Swiss mechanical movement.

I happen to be lucky enough to have been given a nearly mint example from 1974, which has a distinctly mid-century design that is quite beautiful.