Marathon (North America)

The Marathon Watch Company has its roots in the Wein family (formally Weinzieher). The Wein family originally emigrated to the US from Russia and would go on to form important branches of the North American watch industry. The foundations were established in 1904 with the incorporation of Weinstrum Watches, later to be known known as Wein Brothers. Eventually, the larger family enterprise dissolved into various individual undertakings.

Hyman Wein (pronounced “wine”), born in 1888 in the city of Kiev, was 34 years old when he emigrated to the US with his wife Susan, also known as Sasha. They settled in Chicago, Illinois, where he founded the Clinton Watch Company in 1922. Like many others at the time, the Clinton Watch Company imported movements, dials, and cases, assembling the parts in their workshops.

 

Rose Wenger and her husband traveled to Montreal in 1923 and founded Wenger Ltd, which today owns the Cardinal watch brand. (This Canadian enterprise was not and is not affiliated with Wenger Switzerland or their sister company, Victorinox, which did not begin watch production until the late 1980s.)


Morris Wein would become the founder of Marathon Watch in Montreal, Canada in 1939. As soon as 1941, Marathon was manufacturing timing instruments for the Allied Forces. 

 

The Marathon Watch Company was a "compiler" – that is, rather than designing and producing watches in-house, they used imported parts to assemble timepieces. Sometime in the 1970s, a deal was struck with the USSR to import Molnija pocket watches, Zlatoust stopwatches, and Slava alarm clocks for sale in North America under the Marathon name. This US-Soviet partnership partnership continued into the 1980s, likely until the disollution of the USSR.

 Today, Marathon Watch is run by Morris' grandson, Mitchell Wein (pronounced “ween”).

Sources: 1, 2

Marathon
Marathon

Caliber: 3602 (18 jewels) Year: 1970s Notes: Pocket watch, Molnija export (USA), Chelyabinsk Watch Factory

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Marathon
Marathon

Caliber: 4282H (15 jewels) Notes: 60-second stopwatch, Zlatoust Watch Factory

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