Capone’s platinum pocket watch yields $84,375

BOSTON, MA — Al Capone’s diamond-studded pocket watch sold for $84,375 according to Boston-based RR Auction.

Watch Speaks to Capone’s Eye For Elegance

Capone's pocket watch

Al Capone’s pocket watch, which commanded top dollar during RR Auction’s July 24 sale, reaching $84,375 before the gavel fell. (All photos courtesy RR Auction)

The platinum rounded triangular pocket watch made by the Illinois Watch Company. The circumference of front bezel bears a series of seventy-two cut diamonds. It bears a platinum face, and gold-tone impressed numerals and watch hands. The reverse of the case bears the initials “AC,” which consists of twenty-three cut diamonds. It is encircled by twenty-six more. It includes the original 12″ watch chain made of 14K white gold.

Eager to be perceived as an elegant gentleman, the formidable Capone was fastidious about his appearance and style. With that he sought subtlety in favor of fine, flashy suits, large pinky rings, and no shortage of diamonds. Capone insisted that his Chicago Outfit also dress the part. This meant his men were to wear gray fedoras and spotless tailored suits.

The pocket watch is accompanied by a letter of provenance from Eric Griese, the great-grandson of Al Capone, in part: “Shortly after the passing of Albert Francis ‘Sonny’ Capone, his daughter, Barbara Prince, nee Capone, a resident of California, delivered the watch described below to me, along with other personal property that at one time was the personal property of my great grand father, Alphonse G. Capone.”

All In the Family

“My great grandfather had given this material to my grandfather; my grandfather Albert Francis ‘Sonny’ Capone told his daughter Barbara Prince that this property was to be given to me following his death.”

“It’s a brilliant pocket watch that exudes all of the Ritz and power redolent of the one of most notorious gangsters,” said Bobby Livingston, Executive VP at RR Auction.

Additional Highlights

Bonnie Parker’s three headed snake ring, sold for $25,000. The ring features green and red jewels, likely manufactured by the Uncas jewelry company in the early 1930s. Retrieving it from the couple’s disabled vehicle was Sheriff Smoot Schmid after the ‘Sowers Raid’ in 1933.

Al Capone’s handwritten musical manuscript to “Humoresque,” sold for $18,750. The musically

Bonnie Parker snake ring

Three-headed coiled snake ring worn by outlaw Bonnie Parker sold for $25,000.

inclined former public enemy number took to writing the song while at Alcatraz. Crime-boss and legendary Gangster Alphonse “Al” Capone’s controlling presence was a large part of Chicago’s underworld during the Prohibition era. In turn, his image reached celebrity status in the Windy City and beyond. Less well known, of course, is the fact that Capone had a softer side: he was a jazz and opera aficionado, going so far as to form a band while imprisoned and writing his own music.

Bonnie and Clyde handwritten ‘So Long’ letter to Ray Hamilton, sold for $16,250. The four-page letter written in the hand of Bonnie Parker and signed at the conclusion by Clyde Barrow, circa late April 1934.

Two original 1933 Bonnie Parker & Clyde Barrow Arrest Warrants, sold for $8,125.

The Gangsters, Outlaws, and Lawmen live auction event from RR Auction took place on Saturday, June 24, 2017, at the Royal Sonesta Boston, 40 Edwin Land Boulevard, Cambridge, Massachusettes.

For more information, visit www.rrauction.com.

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