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The Wittnauer brand was formally established under the name The "A. Wittnauer Company." The company began as a small family business, catering to the ever growing world of both scientific and private exploration, which gained them a reputation for use by those who needed reliability: navigators, explorers, and astronomers.
While Wittnauer got its start with an economy model, it quickly moved into more rarefied terrain, creating highly sophisticated chronometers. The company's breakthrough came in 1907, when Wittnauer supplied a pair of watches to the Navy, which was testing its aviation capabilities. Perhaps because of this very early alignment with the budding aviation industry, Wittnauer watches would be worn by such notable explorers as Ronald Amundsen and Richard E. Byrd, as well as aviators from Amelia Earhart to Wiley Post.