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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
On a tip from Sam2, I ordered a two-tone NOS Hadley metal link band for my Accuquartz/Quartz converted watch. Last night I decided to do a little research on Hadley bands. I know that today the company is known as "Hadley-Roma" but wondered about how Hadley got started. Some of you may already be familiar with the story.

Arthur Hadley owned a small jewelry store. In 1913, along with a co-worker, he invented and patented the first expansion watch band! This became the forerunner of all expansion bands that followed. At first, the bands were not popular with men, being thought of as too feminine. Men adopted them during WW1 when soldiers found them easier to use in combat. The rest is history. Or is it? Almost 100 years later some of his relatives commenced a court battle over his 7 million dollar estate. A book was written by one family member about the events and The History Channel even broadcast a program last Fall titled "The Will". There is a link below describing how one of his family became aware of her Great Uncle's accomplishment. I downloaded "The Will" from the iTunes store and watched it this morning. It is a fascinating story. Not only did Art Hadley influence watch band history but more than 60 years after his death the story continues.

Professional Jeweler Archive: The Bracelet

Note: Hadley Watch Band Corp. was purchased by Bertram Kalisher in 1960 and merged it with his Kalbe Co. to become Hadley-Kalbe Corp. I can't find any info. on how and when Roma Industries, LLC acquired Hadley-Kalbe.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 · (Edited)
I don't pretend to understand the chronology but the story seems to end with links to The Norman M. Morris Corp. and Roma Industries. Mr. Morris, entrepreneur and philanthropist, was a fascinating individual. He was the sole distributor of Omega watches in the United States.

Norman Morris, Watch Seller And Foundation President, 99 - Obituary; Biography - NYTimes.com
Interesting! Thanks for the contribution. Yes, definitely a link to Roma and, is the other Morris a brother? Did he own Hadley before Roma Industries?

Omega folks wonder if Norman Morris was knowledgeable of the purchase of Omega watches by NASA - presumably for testing for use in space.

I know this is not about Bulova watches but Hadley bands were found on Bulova watches so I thought it was a neat bit of watch accessory trivia.
 

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Arthur Hadley and Norman Morris would have been life long friends and no doubt were members of the same associations and worked to promote many of the same charities. Hadley died in 1941.
One year ago, Robert E. Morris (Son) was listed as the (Roma Ind.) corporate president and the daughter, Arline Lubin was the chairman. Her husband, Marvin was listed as Director/Secretary. The brother's name is Edward Morris. I found nothing to suggest that he was ever involved in the company.

Hadley-Kalbe was still in business as of 1989, according to directory listings. Trade Name registration expired in 2001.

UPDATE: Hadley-Roma filed the trademark on 8/26/1987.
 

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Elgin purchased Hadley in the early 1950s. Hadley ads listing it as 'A Division of Elgin National Watch Company' appeared as early as 1952, and Elgin ads specifying Hadley bracelets also start around then. In 1962 (IIRC) Elgin sold Hadley, in the course of their slow, painful demise.
 
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