On March 6, 1946, Rolex founder Hans Wilsdorf announced his intention to create "a watch that our agents could sell at a more modest price than our Rolex watches, and yet one that would attain the standards of dependability for which Rolex is famous." Thus, the Tudor Watch Company was born.
In 1952, Tudor launched the Oyster Prince, and it was a resounding success. From the very first Tudor Oyster Princes that rolled off the assembly line in 1952, the model featured two technical innovations that were theretofore exclusive to Rolex: automatic movements and the trademark waterproof Rolex "Oyster" case. The advertising campaign that announced the Oyster Prince's introduction featured men working in harsh, forbidding conditions, such as miners or construction workers, all with a Tudor Oyster Prince strapped to their wrists.
The Tudor Oyster Prince's reputation for sturdiness and dependability was tested almost immediately. In 1952, the Royal Navy of the United Kingdom organized a scientific expedition to the northernmost reaches of Greenland. Contrary to popular belief, it was not the Longines Greenlander (Reference 23088) that accompanied this expedition, but the Tudor Oyster Prince, one for each of the thirty crew members.
Captain J.D. Walker of the Expedition was so taken with the performance of his Tudor Oyster Prince that he wrote a letter to Rolex commending them for their superlative product:
Having recently returned to England after thirteen months with the British North Greenland Expedition, I should like to express my extreme admiration for the Rolex Tudor Oyster Prince which I wore on my wrist throughout my tour with the Expedition... Temperatures varied from 70 degrees Fahrenheit to -50 degrees Fahrenheit, and on many occasions during the thaw period the watch was unavoidably immersed in water... Despite these trials, occasional time signals broadcast from England proved that my Rolex Tudor Prince watch was maintaining a remarkable accuracy. On no occasion did it require to be wound by hand...
(Credit: Analog Shift)
Case Size: 34 mm diameter
Case Thickness: 10 mm
Case Material: Stainless Steel
Dial Markers: Stick
Water Resistance: 100 meters
Strap/Bracelet Material: Stainless Steel