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WWD Milestones issue 05/18/2009

1847
Louis-François Cartier (1819-1904) takes over the jewelry workshop of his apprenticeship master, Adolphe Picard, at 29 Rue Montorgueil, Paris.

This story first appeared in the May 18, 2009 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.

1856
Princess Mathilde, niece of Napoleon I and cousin to Emperor Napoleon III, makes her first Cartier purchase.

1859
Cartier moves to 9 Boulevard des Italiens. Empress Eugénie becomes a customer.

1888
The first jewelry bracelet-watches for women are made.

1898
Louis Cartier (1875-1942) joins his father, Alfred (1841-1925; son of Louis-François), in business.

1899
Cartier opens at 13 Rue de la Paix in Paris.

1900
Crowned heads and aristocrats from around the world flock to buy Neoclassic diamond jewelry mounted in platinum.

1902
Pierre Cartier (1878-1964), Alfred’s second son, opens a branch at 4 New Burlington Street in London. The opening coincides with the coronation of King Edward VII.

1904
Cartier receives its first royal warrant as official purveyor to King Edward VII of England.

King Alfonso XIII of Spain appoints the company an official purveyor.

Louis Cartier creates a watch with a leather strap, expressly designed to be worn on the wrist, for his friend Alberto Santos-Dumont, the Brazilian aviator.

Queen Alexandra of England purchases a necklace in the Indian style.

Cartier introduces jewelry prefi guring the Art Deco style, recognizable for its abstract and geometric forms.

1905
King Carlos I of Portugal appoints Cartier an official purveyor.

1906
Alfred’s third son, Jacques (1884- 1942), takes over the London branch.

Creation of the first Tonneau wristwatch.

1907
First exhibition and sale in Saint Petersburg, at the Grand Hotel Europe.

Tsar Nicholas II of Russia names the company as his official purveyor.

1908
King Paramindr Maha Chulalongkorn of Siam appoints Cartier an official purveyor.

1909
Cartier expands into the growing American market as Pierre Cartier opens a subsidiary in New York at 712 Fifth Avenue.

A new location opens at 175-176 New Bond Street, London.

Patent is granted for the folding buckle for wristwatches.

1910
Pierre Cartier sells the blue, 45.5-carat Hope Diamond to an American customer, Evalyn Walsh McLean.

1911
Launch of the Santos de Cartier wristwatch, inspired by the 1904 model.

Jacques Cartier travels to India to attend the Delhi Durbar and to visit the Persian Gulf.

1912
The first mystery clock, the Model A, is introduced.

A delegation from the City of Paris presents Tsar Nicholas II with the Cartier Imperial Egg (now at New York’s Metropolitan Museum of Art).

Introduction of baguette-cut diamonds and the comet clocks.

Launch of the Tortue watch.

1913
King Peter I of Serbia appoints Cartier an official purveyor.

1914
Cartier paves the bezel on a lady’s round wristwatch with diamonds and onyx to create the first Panther motif.

Duke Philippe of Orleans appoints the company an official purveyor.

1917

The New York store moves to 653 Fifth Avenue, the mansion of Morton F. Plant, which Pierre Cartier acquires in exchange for a double-strand necklace of 55 and 73 natural pearls.

First studies for the Tank wristwatch.

The Cartier New York workshop opens; later named “American Art Works.”

1918
Creation of batons for French Field-Marshals Foch and Pétain.

1919
Launch of the Tank wristwatch.

King Albert I of Belgium appoints Cartier an official purveyor.

1921
Cartier is named official purveyor to the Prince of Wales, future King Edward VIII, who, on abdicating in 1936, became the Duke of Windsor.

Creation of the Tank cintrée wristwatch.

1922
Creation of the Tank Louis Cartier and Tank Chinoise wristwatches.

Opening of Cartier’s London workshop named the “English Art Works.”

1923

Introduction of the first Portico mystery clock.

1924
Creation of the three-band ring and bracelet combining gold in three colors, known in the U.S. as Trinity.

1925
Cartier makes a memorable appearance at the International Exhibition of Modern Industrial and Decorative Arts in Paris, in the Pavillon de l’Élégance.

Alfred Cartier dies.

1926
Creation of the Baguette wristwatch.

1928
A loyal American customer, Marjorie Merriweather Post, purchases from Cartier in London earrings once worn by Queen Marie-Antoinette of France.

Creation of the Tortue single-button chronograph wristwatch.

1929
King Fouad I of Egypt appoints Cartier an official purveyor.

Participation in the Exhibition of French Arts in Cairo.

Creation of the Tank à guichets wristwatch.

1932

Creation of the Tank basculante wristwatch.

1933
Jeanne Toussaint is named head of Cartier fine jewelry.

Cartier files a patent for the “invisible mount,” a stone-setting technique in which the metal of the mount disappears to show only the stones.

1935
Cartier opens in Monte Carlo.

1936
Creation of the Tank asymétrique wristwatch.

1938
Cartier opens in Cannes.

The smallest wristwatch in the world, by Cartier, is given to 12-year-old Princess Elizabeth of England by the French President, Albert Lebrun, when King George VI and Queen Elizabeth go to France for a state visit.

1939
Cartier is named an official purveyor to King Zog I of Albania.

1942
Creation of the “Caged Bird” brooch as a symbol of the Occupation. In 1944, the “Freed Bird” brooch would celebrate the Liberation of Paris.

Louis and Jacques Cartier die.

1945
Pierre Cartier heads Cartier Paris.

Claude, son of Louis, takes the helm of Cartier New York, while Jean-Jacques Cartier, son of Jacques, heads Cartier London.

1949
The Duke and Duchess of Windsor purchase, in Paris, a platinum panther brooch on a Kashmir cabochon sapphire of 152.35 carats. Cartier would buy the brooch for its own collection in 1987.

1950

Legendary Hollywood actress Gloria Swanson appears in “Sunset Boulevard” wearing two diamond and rock crystal bracelets she purchased from Cartier in 1930.

1953
Marilyn Monroe sings “Cartier!” in the film Gentlemen Prefer Blondes.

1955
Creation of Jean Cocteau’s sword for his election to the Académie Française, to the artist’s own design.

1956
For her marriage to Prince Rainier, American actress Grace Kelly receives numerous gifts of jewelry by Cartier including her engagement ring, set with a 12-carat emerald-cut diamond.

1957

Barbara Hutton buys a tiger brooch in yellow gold, onyx and yellow diamonds.

1964
Pierre Cartier dies.

1967
Creation of the Crashwatch.

1968
The Mexican actress María Félix commissions Cartier to make a diamond necklace in the form of a serpent.

Cartier grants Robert Hocq a license to create an oval lighter with a retractable wheel under the Cartier name.

Creation of the Maxi Oval watch in London.

1969
Cartier acquires an exceptional pear-shaped diamond of 69.42 carats and sells it to Richard Burton, who gives it to Elizabeth Taylor for her birthday. The famous Cartier diamond was thus renamed the Taylor-Burton.

Cartier opens in Geneva.

Creation of the Love bracelet.

1970
Cartier opens in Hong Kong.

1971
Cartier opens in Munich.

1972
Cartier Paris is taken over by a group of investors led by Joseph Kanoui.

1973
Creation of Les Must de Cartier by Robert Hocq with Alain-Dominique Perrin.

1974

Launch of the first leather collection in bordeaux-red.

Cartier loans a significant part of its Art Deco style jewelry collection for The Great Gatsby, directed by Jack Clayton and starring Robert Redford and Mia Farrow.

1975
Cartier celebrates the 100th anniversary of the birth of Louis Cartier.

The first major retrospective, “Louis Cartier: Art Deco Masterpieces,” opens in Monte Carlo.

1976
First collection of Les Must de Cartier vermeil watches.

Viewing in New York of “Retrospective Louis Cartier: One Hundred and One Years of the Jeweler’s Art.”

Creation of the first oval pen.

1978
Creation of the Santos de Cartier watch with a gold and steel bracelet.

Cartier scarves make their debut.

1979
Cartier Paris, Cartier London and Cartier New York are reunited as a single legal entity.

1981
Launch of Must de Cartier and Santos de Cartier perfumes.

1982
Introduction of gold-and-stone-themed jewelry collection.

1983
Creation of the Collection Ancienne Cartier (later the Cartier Collection) to record and illustrate the jeweler’s art and history.

Creation of the Panthère de Cartier watch.

1984
Introduction of a jewelry collection on the theme of gold and pearls.

Creation of the Cartier Foundation for Contemporary Art in Jouy-en-Josas.

Cartier becomes partner to the International Polo Tournament at Windsor, England.

1985
Launch of the Pasha de Cartier wristwatch.

1986
Debut of the Panther jewelry collection.

1987
Panthère de Cartier perfume launches.

Creation of Les Maisons de Cartier tableware (porcelain, crystal and silverware).

1988
Formation of Compagnie Financière Richemont. Richemont owns a minority holding in Cartier Monde SA and Rothmans International, which also holds investments in Cartier Monde, Alfred Dunhill and, through Alfred Dunhill, Montblanc and Chloé.

Debut of Egypt-themed jewelry.

1989-1990
The Tank Américaine wristwatch bows.

Showing of “The Art of Cartier,” the first major retrospective in Paris, at the Petit Palais.

1991
Establishment of the Comité International de la Haute Horlogerie (CIHH).

The first Salon International de la Haute Horlogerie (SIHH) in Geneva.

1992
“The Art of Cartier” is shown at the Hermitage Museum in Saint Petersburg, Russia.

1995
Creation of the Pasha C wristwatch in steel.

So Pretty de Cartier perfume launches.

“The Art of Cartier, the World of French Jewelry Art” exhibition opens at the Tokyo Metropolitan Teien Art Museum in Japan.

1996
The Tank Française wristwatch is introduced.

Debut of the Creation jewelry line.

Launch of the Tank ring.

Showing of “Cartier, Splendors of Jewelry” retrospective at the Hermitage Foundation in Lausanne, Switzerland.

1997
Cartier celebrates its 150th anniversary with fine jewelry introductions, including a necklace in the form of a serpent, paved with diamonds and set with two pear-shaped emeralds of 205 and 206 carats.

The “Cartier 1900-1939” retrospective shows at the British Museum in London and New York’s Metropolitan Museum of Art.

1998
Creation of the Collection Privée Cartier Paris fine watch collection.

1999
Creation of the Paris Nouvelle Vague Cartier jewelry collection, inspired by the city of Paris.

“The Art of Cartier, A Splendor of Time” retrospective at the Museo del Palacio de Bellas Artes opens in Mexico City with guest of honor María Félix.

The “Cartier 1900-1939” exhibition opens at Chicago’s Field Museum of Natural History.

2001
The intersection of Fifth Avenue and 52nd Street in New York is officially named “Place de Cartier.”

Launch of Délices de Cartier jewelry.

Launch of the Roadster watch.

Cartier shows the ceremonial necklace made for the Maharajah of Patiala at the  21st Biennale des Antiquaires in Paris.

2002
Creation of the Tank Divan wristwatch.

“Cartier Design viewed by Ettore Sottsass” premieres at the Vitra Design Museum in Berlin and the Palazzo Reale in Milan. The exhibition will later travel to the Daigoji Temple in Kyoto, Japan, and the Houston Museum of Fine Arts.

2003
Introduction of the Le Baiser du Dragon and Les Délices de Goa jewelry collections.

The Kimberley Process is implemented and Cartier immediately adopts measures to end trade in conflict diamonds.

Cartier contributes to “Jean Cocteau, Spanning the Century,” at the Centre Georges Pompidou in Paris.

Cartier opens at 154 Avenue des Champs-Elysées in Paris.

2004

The company marks the 100th anniversary of the Santos de Cartier wristwatch, with the creation of the Santos 100, Santos Demoiselle and Santos-Dumont wristwatches. Cartier presents “The Art of Cartier” retrospective at the Shanghai Museum.

Presentation of the historic Star of the South diamond weighing 128.48 carats at the 22nd Biennale des Antiquaires in Paris.

2005
Creation of Caresse d’Orchidées par Cartier fine jewelry.

A bespoke perfume service begins at 13 Rue de la Paix.

Cartier cofounds the Council for Responsible Jewelry Practices and becomes an active member of the Women’s Forum.

2006
Creation of the La Doña de Cartier wristwatch. Cartier holds the first “Love Charity” international fund-raising sale.

Cartier presents a special award for women business entrepreneurs at the Women’s Forum for the Economy and Society.

2007
Debut of Inde Mystérieuse fine jewelry and the Ballon Bleu de Cartier wristwatch.

“Cartier 1899-1949, The Journey of a Style” premieres at the Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation Museum in Lisbon.

“Cartier, Innovation Through the 20th Century” shows at the Kremlin Museum in Moscow.

2008
The 9452 MC calibre, the first Cartier calibre to be stamped with the Geneva Seal, is introduced.

Creation of Roadster men’s fragrance.

“The Art of Cartier” retrospective shows at the Deoksugung National Museum of Seoul.

Presentation of a fine jewelry collection, dedicated to extraordinary creatures such as dragons, chimaeras, plumed serpents, at the 24th Biennale des Antiquaires in Paris.

2009
Cartier marks 100 years in New York.