Amazing 1949 first Rolex Datejust watches
One of the benefits of buying and selling luxury watches is that we can be part of the story behind every watch that passes through our hands. Some of the watches we bought were essentially unused models whose owners decided to stand out from the crowd, while others were antiques that had belonged to a family for generations.
Recently, we bought a Rolex Datejust reference 5030 directly from the grandson of the original owner. In truth, to call the watch a “Datejust” is slightly misleading, as the watch is actually what could be considered a ‘Pre-Datejust’ since it has a date complication, yet its dial lacks the ‘Datejust’ name that now the best replica watches from this collection.
Generally speaking, this watch is a Rolex Oyster Perpetual ref. 5030, which is also sometimes referred to as an Overtone among collectors. However, even more, impressive than this watch’s age or all-original condition is the great story behind it, and we’re grateful that the family of the original owner was kind enough to let us share it with everyone.
The Rolex Datejust was first launched in 1945 to celebrate Rolex’s 40th anniversary, and it forever set the standard for how a date display on a wristwatch should function. However, just like with the Rolex Daytona chronograph when it was first released in the 1960s, there were a few years following the initial debut of the Datejust where there were models that did not include the now-standard ‘Datejust’ name on their dials.
Actually, none of the very first replica Rolex Datejust watches from the inaugural reference 4467 actually have the Datejust name anywhere on them, despite being Datejust watches. Even on Rolex’s own website, the image of the first Datejust does not carry the Datejust name, and it was not until part of the way through the production of the reference 5030 that the world, “Datejust” started to appear on the dials of Rolex’s date-displaying watches.
Although John was only a few years old when his grandfather died, he liked to imagine the members of the “Dayton elite” meeting after work in a mahogany bar, smoking cigars and drinking Scotch, strategizing their next business move. Or maybe they’ve had a hard day in the office smoking cigarettes, drinking beer, and telling jokes — and this 5030 Rolex is the only thing that can testify to that.
However, as Rolex considers their official start of the Datejust series, claims that the earliest examples of these Watches Rolex dates just won’t be inaccurate. With that in mind, these watches have another name.