When the word ‘original’ is added to a name, it is often done to distinguish itself from the crowd of pretenders, a statement of being authentic, the first, often copied but never duplicated. So it is with Glashutte Original, a company that found it necessary to add the Original to its name not once, but twice.
While Swiss watches have a well-earned reputation for manufacturing exceptional and meticulously crafted timepieces, the town of Glashutte in Germany has established a reputation that rivals Switzerland’s for fine watches. Ferdinand Adolph Lange, the namesake of A. Lange and Sohns watchmakers, was also the founding father of watchmaking in the town of Glashutte, which he began in 1845. Trained across Europe as a watchmaker, F.A. Lange decided to return to his native Saxony to bring watch making to a region suffering from years of war. His methods of training specialists who focused on specific skills proved so successful that other talented watchmakers moved to the area. Soon, adding the word “Glashutte” to a watch became a statement of quality, regardless of whether it was actually made there. “Original Glashutte ” was added to watches made in Glashutte to ensure that a watch bearing its name was indeed made in Glashutte.
By the Second World War, Glashutte was a well-established watch making region, so much so that when the Soviet Union took control of the region after the war, they merged eight of the local watchmakers into a single company to continue producing watches. After the reunification of Germany in 1990, Glashutte Original formed out of the company formed by the Soviets, which began the modern era of fine watchmaking. Today, both A. Lange and Sohns and Glashutte Original still make watches in the same town and both are known for extremely precise watches with beautiful finishes. While A. Lange offers more superbly finished watches, Glashutte Original watches offer one of the best values in luxury watches due to their price relative to their exceptional craftsmanship.