Golden Spike! Louis Moinet Pays Tribute To The Transcontinental Railroad

Golden Spike! Louis Moinet Pays Tribute To The Transcontinental Railroad With A Special Automaton

To celebrate the 150th anniversary of the overland route, Louis Moinet is introducing the Transcontinental limited series.

By Josh Shanks

On May 10, 1869, Central Pacific Railroad President Leland Stanford ceremonially drove in a golden railroad spike to mark the completion of the Transcontinental Railroad. A six-year project spanning 1,912 miles and connecting Council Bluffs, Iowa to San Francisco Bay. A monumental undertaking even by today’s standards!

“Louis Moinet has its very own way of celebrating the 150th anniversary of the first transcontinental railroad connecting the Atlantic and Pacific coasts of the USA. The innovative mechanical creation in question is both a tribute to the pioneers of yesteryear and an invitation to those of the present day – for whom it is available on a pre-order basis of two limited edition of 18 and 69 watches.” – Jean-Marie Schaller, CEO & Creative Director

Enter the Louis Moinet Transcontinental

To celebrate the anniversary of this golden occasion, Louis Moinet has created a limited series of watches with serious DNA. The new Louis Moinet Transcontinental collection! A series of two timepieces each with a unique animation which brings to life that fateful day in May 1869.

Under the leadership of Abraham Lincoln, the United States was quickly becoming a global powerhouse. However, at the time, the nation was embroiled in Civil War. What better way to build national unity than a public works project unlike anything America had seen?

Louis Moinet once again pays tribute to the bold people who built America. Most notably, the brand appeals heavily to descendants of the original pioneers which built this great railroad. Many of the men who built the Transcontinental Railroad were Chinese laborers, many of which viewed their work on the Transcontinental Railroad as a point of pride.

The building of modern-day America

Today, it would be almost unheard of for public and private companies to come together with the support of the US Government to build multi-billion-dollar infrastructure. After all, the last time this happened was in 1969 for the moon landing. But back in 1863, time was the name of the game. The ability to get from one place to another safely and efficiently was paramount to the growth of our still young nation.

Which is why in less than six years, thousands of laborers came together to build the Transcontinental Railroad. The new ability to carry goods of all kinds from coast-to-coast caused the United States economy to surge and even to this day, portions of the original track are still in use. This is ingenuity worth celebrating.

Golden Spike

One of the principle inspirations behind the Louis Moinet Transcontinental is the golden spike (aka “The Last Spike”). This 17.6-karat gold last spike was used in a ceremony to commemorate the completion of the Transcontinental Railroad. Now on display at Cantor Arts Center at Stanford University, the golden spike still attracts a crowd!

Perhaps my favorite touch of the Louis Moinet Transcontinental is the fully functional golden spike animation at three o’clock. A playful complication which further “drives” home the history of the Transcontinental Railroad.

About the Louis Moinet Transcontinental

Playing on the pioneering spirit of the Transcontinental Railroad, the Louis Moinet Transcontinental takes the concept of railroad watches off the tracks and into the stratosphere! Available in two case options, a 43.2mm two-tone rose gold & steel or a 45.4mm solid rose gold piece. Powered by an incredible Louis Moinet movement comprised of 248 parts and beating at 28,800vph.

The automaton at 3 o'clock is inspired by a steam locomotive. The piece itself is comprised of two large wheels and one small wheel which drives a golden spike up and down once activated. This complication reproduces the act of driving spikes, which is a very familiar sight since thousands (perhaps millions) of these crampons were placed throughout the Transcontinental Railroad. To add to the railway legitimacy, the front of a locomotive is shown at six o'clock. The intricate rose-gold-colored dial is made with a high copper content lending it a and each piece will receive a unique serial number engraved on a 18 carat rose gold spike at 12 o'clock.

Furthermore, the brand has incorporated pieces of railroad spikes. After more than a century of weathering and use, these spikes have been specially milled and used in the presentation case of the Louis Moinet Transcontinental. This unique presentation case pays tribute to the 19th century by using actual DNA from the great American railway system. If you watch the video, you can see the process firsthand. It’s a nice touch of Transcontinental DNA.

Pricing and availability

The Louis Moinet Transcontinental will be available via an exclusive pre-order. For those interested, you can email Pre-order is open starting May 10 through September 10, 2019. Final delivery will be carried about by one of Louis Moinet partner retailers. You better hurry as the brand is making less than 100 of these watches. The full breakdown is; 69 pieces in rose gold/steel and 18 pieces of the rose gold version. Pricing information is as follows, $38,500 for rose gold/steel, and $57,500 for rose gold. All aboard!

"The road must be built, and you are the man to do it. Take hold of it yourself. By building the Union Pacific, you will be the remembered man of your generation." - President Abraham Lincoln

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