It’s been 125 years since the Statue of Liberty — a gift from the French to the United States to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the Declaration of Independence — was first erected in New York Harbor. To commemorate the occasion, Romain Jerome has created a new watch, called Liberty DNA, whose dial contains actual fragments of the statue. The eight-year-old Swiss brand, based in Geneva, collaborated with The Statue of Liberty-Ellis Island Foundation, a non-profit organization devoted to raising funds for restoration of the Statue and Ellis Island, and the Gold Leaf Corporation, which oversees the preservation and use of historic Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island artifacts, in developing the new timepiece, the latest in its “DNA of Famous Legends” portfolio. Issued in a limited edition of 125 pieces, the watch features a bronze bezel with 12 “spikes” reminiscent of those on Lady Liberty’s crown. Over time, the bezel will acquire a patina much like that of the Statue itself. The “DNA” referred to in the model’s name is featured on the dial, in which particles of oxidized copper from the Statue — recovered during the restoration work undertaken for its centennial in 1986 — have been incorporated into the verdigris dial, whose dial color evokes the greenish tint of the Statue. The faceted hands are bronze colored and the strap is of brown alligator leather. The medallion on the caseback of the watch depicts the flame of liberty lighting up the stars and stripes of the American flag. (For a short video on the making of the Liberty DNA dial. click below.) The watch retails for $14,900. According to Romain Jerome president Manuel Emch, who spoke to Watchtime about the Liberty DNA and its origins, the new watch joins the Eyjafjallajökull-DNA, which features particles from the infamous Icelandic volcano that erupted in 2010, in the company’s “Earth” family of timepieces. The other two families, in the “DNA of Famous Legends” portfolio, “Air” and “Water,” are represented by, respectively, the MoonDust-DNA collection, which use actual lunar dust in their dials, and Titanic-DNA (recently retooled as “SteamPunk” models), which contains metal particles recovered from the Titanic.
Technical characteristics: Movement: Caliber RJ001-A, based on ETA 7750, automatic; 28,800 vph; 23 jewels; 42-hour power reserve Functions: Central hours, minutes Case and strap: Black PVD-coated steel, diameter = 46 mm; bronze bezel with 12 spikes echoing the aesthetic of the Statue of Liberty’s crown; engraved caseback depicting the flame of liberty lighting up the stars and stripes of the American flag; water-resistant to 30 meters; on brown vintage-finished alligator strap Dial and hands: Verdigris-colored dial containing oxidized copper particles from the Statue of Liberty; faceted, polished and sandblasted bronze-colored hands Limited edition of 125 pieces Receive all the news, features and reviews from WatchTime for free! Sign up to our free weekly newsletter and get all the news delivered to your inbox.