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Engraved Rolex found after 20 years at sea

engraved rolex submariner

Followers of this blog will no doubt have read about what value we believe an engraving has.

An engraving tells a story all in itself, it makes the item unique and it transforms a replicable object into something truly special.

However, for this blog post – and this post only – we’re going to highlight the most obvious advantage of engraving a simple name… it identifies the owner.

Indeed, an engraving is like a super name-badge.

Just as every school child turns up on their first day with their name-tape stitched onto the inside of their jumper, so people through history have branded with their name what is owned in their possession.

Much of the time, this is for vanity’s sake.

But to lay claim to your property and possessions speaks to a deeper human instinct about protecting what you have worked to accrue.

And sometimes this proves to be a very wise action, as recently events have shown.

It was reported this week in the Telegraph that the distinguished British sailor, Philip McColl, could be reunited with a £10,000 Rolex that was thought to have been lost overboard 20 years ago.

Mr McColl was then a yacht engineer in the employ of Raul Gardini, an Italian billionaire and competitor in the America’s Cup.

Having won the San Francisco Cup in 1988, the Rolex was gifted in recognition of the achievement.

However, ten years later when boating near the British coast, the engraved gift went missing and was assumed to have gone overboard.

Later feeling that the timepiece may have been stolen, though, Philip McColl reported the item as missing to the Falmouth and Cornwall police.

For 20 years, that seemed to be the end of the matter.

But in 2018, the sailor received a call from an auction house in Geneva saying that they had come in to possession of a Rolex watch with his name engraved on the back.

You might think at this point that the story ends here with a happy conclusion… but come back in a week to read of how it continued.