Resurrecting the legacy of his family’s name, Walter Lange dedicated his life in creating a trustworthy brand. With his death in January 2017, the fine watchmaking world lost a man of rare capabilities. Today, A. Lange & Söhne honours its founder with the ‘Homage to Walter Lange’ watch.
World War II is undoubtedly the darkest chapter in human history. Walter Lange, like any other young man in Germany, saw the horrors of this apocalyptic crusade. But unlike most of them, he also witnessed the complete breakdown and dismantling of his family’s watchmaking business.
In spite of such a mind-numbing experience, he did not give up. He bided his time and resurrected his family’s legacy to give to the world unparalleled horological creations. Today, we know this brand as A. Lange & Söhne.
Born on 29th July, 1924, Walter Lange, Founder of A. Lange & Söhne passed away on 17th January, 2017. The brand that he restored has honoured his genuis and artistry with the ‘Homage to Walter Lange’ watch. The maison went back to the classic 1815 model to create a timepiece with an extraordinary complication. One that befits the extraordinary personality it is dedicated to!
The legend and the legacy
Ferdinand Adolph Lange had founded the brand Lange in 1845 in Glashütte, Germany. It passed on to his sons Emil and Richard, who continued with their father’s vision of producing remarkable pocket watches. Over the decades the company grew with subsequent Lange generations. At the end of the World War II, under the Soviet administration, the company was nationalised. Brand Lange ceased to exist. The founder’s great-grandson Walter Lange started working on the company’s restoration after the fall of the Berlin Wall in 1990.
After nearly half a century, the first range of Lange watches were unveiled in 1994 by Walter Lange. He is responsible for giving watch connoisseurs such icons of modern watchmaking like Lange 1 and Datograph. It was Walter Lange who made every patron feel like a part of a big family tradition. A. Lange & Söhne was a part of him, and he was part of every watch that is made by the brand. It is only befitting that today the brand he has created should honour his memory with a watch named after him.
Homage to Walter Lange
150 years ago, Ferdinand Adolph Lange invented the stoppable jumping seconds hand. The 1815 “Homage to Walter Lange” proudly flaunts this complication. It was one of his favourite complications.
A pusher at 2 o’clock starts and stops the sweep seconds hand. The timepiece’s traditional railway-track minute scale and the polished hands are inspired by the design of historic pocket watches. The newly developed movement has a special calibre designation: L1924. It refers to Walter Lange’s birth year.
The new watch comes in three editions: 145 watches in white gold, 90 in pink gold and 27 in yellow gold. Each of these number has a story behind it. From 7 December 1845, when Ferdinand Adolph Lange originally established the company, exactly145 years elapsed until 7 December 1990, the date on which Walter Lange registered Lange Uhren GmbH. Precisely 27 years have passed between this date and 7 December 2017.
A black enamel dial and steel case for ‘Homage to Walter Lange’ highlight the strength of the man behind the brand. This watch will be produced only once, underscoring the singularity of his personality. Year 2018 will see it being auctioned off for a charitable purpose. This is in tune with Walter Lange’s philanthropic work. Apart from the steel version, limited editions in yellow, white and pink gold will also be available.
A. Lange & Söhne has sealed the indelible mark that Walter Lange has left on fine watchmaking with an arresting complication – Homage to Walter Lange.