Louis-Francois Cartier was the name of the founder of what it was going to be later such a prestigious company. He started his business in Paris in 1847, and in 1853 he opened up to a private clientele. In 1859 his business was growing so fast that  he opened a store in a better shopping area in Paris.

In 1899, his son Alfred Cartier, took the store to a higher level, opening at the heart of Paris, in a very luxury and expensive street, 13 rue de la Paix nearby Place Vendome. After that, this area became in the centre of international jewelery.

Alfred Cartier gave his three sons Louis, Pierre and Jacques, the management of the Maison. Pierre and Jacques established the company in London and New York, while Louis was in charge of the Parisian House.

In the early 1900’s, the famous aviator Alberto Santos-Dumont tells his friend Louis that he could not read the time on his fob watch while flying, so he asked him for help.

Later with the assistance of watchmaker Edmond Jaeger, Louis Cartier as a brilliant jeweler came up with the idea of a practical wristwatch in 1904 so his Brazilian aviator friend could keep his hands on the controls and read the time without any problem.

In 1907, Cartier signed a contract with Edmond Jaeger who would provide the movements for Cartier watches.

Baignoire and Tortue are the models introduced by Cartier in 1912, followed by the Tank model in 1917.

Louis Cartier designed the Cartier Tank watch in 1917 inspired in the war machines of the Western Front.

In the early 20’s Cartier established a joint company with Edmond Jaeger (Jaeger-LeCoultre).

The watertight watch came later in 1932 when it was specially made for the Pasha of Marrakesh.

Jacque’s son, Louis’s son and Pierre’s daughter sold the business in 1964.

Nowadays, Cartier is the base of the Richemont Louxury Group. Other brands like Vacheron Constantin, IWC, A. Lange & Sohne, Piaget, and Jaeger-LeCoultre are also in this group.

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