Breguet went on a shopping spree at auctions in Geneva and Paris in the past two months, buying up a collection of historic letters as well as two watches, one of which has only recently been rediscovered.
The brand’s museum and its president and chief executive officer Marc A. Hayek first acquired the Breguet No. 3104 from an Antiquorum sale in November, when it resurfaced after 140 years in the possession of a European family.
The 62.5mm minute repeater pocket watch in 18ct gold was original purchased in 1818 by His Royal Highness the Infante Francisco de Paula of Spain, Count of Moratalla.
Breguet No. 4720, a tact watch, was sourced through auction house Fraysse but was originally sold to Casimir Périer in 1841
The final lot, purchased by Breguet from auction house Aguttes, is a collection of 10 letters regarding the brand’s business dealings in Russia from 1808 to 1810, when Breguet opened a shop in St Petersburg, perhaps a candidate for the world’s first monobrand watch boutique.
The letters were written by Lazare Moreau, the man employed by Breguet to operate the St Petersburg branch, to both Breguet senior and junior. The letters were offered by Moreau’s descendants.
The newly acquired pieces will join Breguet’s museum collections in Paris, Zurich and Shanghai.