Aime Brandt came to Philadelphia from Switzerland, likely Neuchatel, sometime before 1795. He is in partnership with Lewis Mathey from 1795 to 1800, Lewis Mathey and James Brown from 1795-1796, and with his brother Charles from 1800 to 1814. Catherine Hollan has extensive information on Brandt in her Philadelphia Silversmiths book (Hollan, 24-25).

Several Aime Brandt signed watches are known and all appear to be nicely finished with signed movements and signed dials as shown in this example. Brandt movements came from Switzerland and have the characteristic double foot/two-screw arrangement for attaching the balance table, and a steel coquerette. Other American watchmakers also turned to Swiss suppliers because the movements were likely less expensive than those supplied from England at the time. Political disfavor with England also no doubt played a role as the American public was increasing more accepting of goods from the continent after the Revolutionary War and again leading up to the War of 1812. For example, Effingham Embree is known to have used both English and Swiss movements for his watches.
Aime Brandt Watch
Aime Brandt Watch

Aime Brandt
(no number)
1800 est.
Description: Swiss fusee movement with a verge escapement signed “Aime Brandt At Philada”. No serial number. Wonderful original signed dial. Silver case marked HW585.

Aime Brandt's watch paper: 129 North Second near Race St. Philad. Seafaring themes were popular and this one was used by a number of early American watch makers who perhaps had ties to the same printer/engraver. The anchor is a symbol of hope and together with a goddess holding a watch is perhaps an appeal for sailors to return safely and quickly.

Aime Brandt Watch Paper

References and recommended reading:
  • Catherine Hollan, Philadelphia Silversmiths and Related Artisans to 1861, Hollan Press, Missouri, 2013