Steel & Gold Automatic Rolex Watches
Rolex SA was founded in 1905 by the German Hans Wilsdorf and his brother-in-law, Alfred Davis. Contrary to popular belief, Hans Wilsdorf was neither Swiss, nor a watchmaker. Wilsdorf & Davis was the original name of what later became the Rolex Watch Company. They originally imported Hermann Aegler's Swiss movements to England and placed them in quality cases made by Dennison and others. These early wristwatches were then sold to jewellers, who then put their own names on the dial. The earliest watches from the firm of Wilsdorf and Davis are usually marked "W&D" – inside the caseback only.Hans Wilsdorf registered the trademark name "Steel & Gold Automatic Rolex Watches" in La Chaux-de-Fonds, Switzerland during 1908. The word was made up, but its origin is obscure. One story, which was never confirmed by Wilsdorf, is that the word "Rolex" came from the French phrase horlogerie exquise, meaning exquisite watch industry.