Brand Directory: Arnold & Son

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John Arnold (1736-1799) was an English watchmaker and inventor. It is said that he was the first to design a watch that was both practical and accurate. In 1762 he met William McGuire for whom he repaired a repeating watch. McGuire was so impressed by Arnold’s skills he gave him a loan, enabling him to set up in business as a watchmaker at Devereux Court, Strand, London. Later in 1787 Arnold & Son was founded when John’s son John Roger (1769-1843) started to collaborate with his father. The important French watchmaker Abraham-Louis Breguet became a great friend of Arnold. Arnold was so impressed that he immediately travelled to Paris and sought permission for Breguet to take on his son as his apprentice. Arnold appears to have given Breguet full access to incorporate or develop any of Arnold's inventions and techniques into his watches.

In 1799, when his father died, he continued the business taking John Dent into partnership (between 1830 and 1840). In 1843, when John-Roger died, Charles Frodsham (1810–1871), a renowned English watch and clockmaker, took over Arnold & Son. He renamed it Arnold & Frodsham Chronometer Makers and in 1884 the firm became Charles Frodsham & Co.

The last sign of the company was in 1857, after which the history stops. From the late 1940s through to the ‘80s, they produced mantel and carriage clocks. 

In 1995, the brand was relaunched in La Chaux-de-Fonds, Switzerland. 

Arnold & Son initially used movements made by external suppliers, principally Jaquet (a company that later became La Joux-Perret), in turn, these were based on Valjoux, ETA and Sellita, and launched their first collection in 1998. Arnold & Son was sold to La Joux-Perret in 2010, and as this company is a movement manufacturer, Arnold & Son became a watchmaking firm manufacturing in-house.

The Company resided at various central London addresses, before moving to 32 Bury Street in 1997, where it continues today.

Arnold & Son was sold to Citizen Watch Co., Ltd in 2012.

Today they sell around 600 watches per year