The Charles River Museum of Industry & Innovation is excited to be hosting founders R.T. Custer and Tyler Wolfe of Vortic Watch Company on a day-long visit to Waltham—"Watch City"—on Friday, July 22, 2016. We first became aware of Vortic from a February piece on NPR. Their remarkable story also became front page news of the Business Section of the April 9th Boston Globe

Three special events are scheduled for July 22nd:

MEET THE MAKERS @ THE MUSEUM (FAMILIES WELCOME)

12:00pm to 4:00pm at the Museum, 154 Moody Street. Museum admission applies. - At this event you can:

  • Learn about the history of Watch City manufacturing with Museum Staff
  • Meet the founders of Vortic Watch Company and see how their watches are built
  • Hear a talk by Steampunk Re-Imagineer Bruce Rosenbaum and see examples of his beautiful work

EXHIBIT INDUCTION CEREMONY

4:30pm to 5:30pm at the Museum Satellite Exhibit at the Waltham Watch Factory, 221 Crescent Street. BY INVITATION ONLY. At this event you will:

  • Witness Vortic's Induction into the Charles River Museum's permanent collection
  • Enjoy a complimentary champagne toast
  • Learn about the meticulous restoration of the Waltham Watch Factory building from its owners, Berkeley Investments, Inc., a Boston-based real estate investment, development, and management company.

WATCH CITY SOCIAL - BYO (BRING YOUR OWN) WALTHAM!

5:30pm to 7:00pm at Brelundi Restaurant, 185 Crescent Street. RESERVATIONS REQUIRED ($10 - see below). At this event you will:

  • Learn about the history of YOUR Waltham wrist or pocket watch
  • Socialize with the founders of the Vortic Watch Company, the developers of the Waltham Watch Factory, City of Waltham officials, the Trustees and Staff from the Charles River Museum, Watch City locals, and other special guests
  • Enjoy complimentary beer, wine, and delicious hors d'oeuvres
Eventbrite - Watch City Social - BYO (Bring Your Own) Waltham Watch!

About Vortic

The Vortic Watch Company is a luxury wrist watch engineering and manufacturing company based in Fort Collins, Colorado. Their inspiration lies in reviving classic watchmaking techniques and traditions. The company's first product, the “American Artisan Series,” celebrates the rich history of horological manufacturing in the United States by restoring vintage, American-made pocket watch movements, and building them into one-of-a-kind wristwatches.

Waltham, Massachusetts, also known as “Watch City,” is the original home of one of the great American watch companies, the Waltham Watch Company.

The “Boston 047”, part of The American Artisan Series by Vortic. Built using an antique Waltham pocket watch movement.

Vortic’s “The Boston” model of watches feature antique Waltham pocket watch movements originally made in Watch City in the late 1800s and early 1900s. These salvaged pieces of American manufacturing history are meticulously restored using only original parts, and built into custom, one-of- a-kind timepieces. Vortic will be placing several pieces in a permanent home in the Museum’s Watch Gallery as well as hosting a raffle of a custom piece with proceeds to benefit the Museum. 

An early image of the Waltham Watch Company Factory

An early image of the Waltham Watch Company Factory

The original Waltham Watch Company was also known as The American Standard Watch Company as it focused primarily on the standardization of parts in order to build higher quality watches. It is said that Henry Ford was inspired to build the Ford Motor Company after a visit to the original Waltham Watch Factory.  

Today, the fully-renovated Waltham Watch Factory mill complex consists of 400,000 square feet of first class office space leased to innovation and technology tenants, one restaurant and one café space, as well as 163 luxury loft-style apartments

The Waltham Watch Factory Today, FROM ACROSS the CHARLES RIVER. 

The Waltham Watch Factory Today, FROM ACROSS the CHARLES RIVER. 

The Charles River Museum of Industry & Innovation resides in the Francis Cabot Lowell Mill complex, site of the Boston Manufacturing Company, America’s first fully integrated factory founded in 1813, and now designated a National Historic Landmark. The museum itself, through an eclectic array of regional artifacts including an extensive Waltham Watch Company collection, explores the American Industrial Revolution.

Bruce Rosenbaum has been dubbed the Steampunk Guru by the Wall Street Journal and Steampunk Evangelist by Wired Magazine. Bruce’s company, ModVic (www.modvic.com), works with clients all across the country to take personal, meaningful objects, creatively combining them with relevant and cool period objects and machinery to transform the ordinary into incredible Steampunk functional art.  

Bruce uses extra movements that the Vortic team cannot salvage to create his beautiful pieces. He’ll be giving a talk on the process during the events called “Steampunk Design: Reimagining Resilience.” Bruce and his wife Melanie’s functional art Steampunk House has been featured in the Boston Globe, The Chicago Tribune, The New York Times, CNN, Huffington Post, NPR and featured on MTV, A&E, Discovery and HGTV. 

Brelundi Authentic Italian Ristorante is located at the historic Watch Factory at 185 Crescent Street, Waltham. The location is like having history within history. As the watch factory comes with a great history so does the story behind Brelundi.  

The recipes have been passed down through family for generations. The owner, Michael Colomba says
“growing up in Southern Italy, we savored meals enhanced with an abundance of fresh ingredients and bright lively flavors found in the Mediterranean.” Freshness is absolutely paramount in Southern Italian cuisine—the ingredients in all dishes are obtained from only the finest providers and many are imported directly from Italy.  “We believe in nothing but the best!” 

THE NEW BRELUNDI RESTAURANT at the WALTHAM WATCH FACTORY (PHOTO COURTESY GARY MORRISON, CHARLES RIVER PHOTOGRAPHY)

THE NEW BRELUNDI RESTAURANT at the WALTHAM WATCH FACTORY (PHOTO COURTESY GARY MORRISON, CHARLES RIVER PHOTOGRAPHY)