DSC03810 © Christophe Demont

History of the watchmaking

The Vallée de Joux is the cradle of high quality watchmaking, present here for more than two centuries.

The watchmaking tradition of the Vallée de Joux owes its origin to the iron industry, whose presence in the region has allowed the manufacture of timepieces as of the first half of the 18th century, initially intended for large clocks. In parallel, the development of pocket watches pushed the first combiers watchmakers to train in the Lake Geneva region. Returning to the Vallée de Joux, then they trained peasants, who began to share their time between agriculture in summer and watchmaking during the long winters. This is how the watchmaking tradition was born.

The watchmakers of the Vallée de Joux made themselves well known around the world due to the high complexity of their watchmaking.

Today, the most prestigious watch brands still sit in the region, while l’Ecole Technique of the Vallée de Joux trains the watchmakers of tomorrow. At the Sentier, Espace Horloger tells the history of this industry, as well as its future, through modern, playful and interactive exhibitions.

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