As well as seals, a number of other attachments were hung from a vest or watch chain. An important attachment was a watch key. These were keys created to keep watches running, both to set the time and wind the watch. Key wind pocket watches remained in use up until the mid 19th century when, in 1842, Adrien Philippe invented the stem wind watch. It was commercialized by Patek Philippe & Co in the 1850s. These watches required the owner to turn a a little handle on a stem to wind the watch. A later version of a stem wind watch involved a lever which was pulled out and turned, to set the time and wind the watch. Wrist watches replaced pocket watches during WWI.
Watch keys really belong to a period before the 1870s, although there was a crossover from the 1850s to the 1870s when both key and stem wind watches were being produced. In fact, there are some patents for various versions of watch keys still being granted towards the end of the 1870s.
There were less important fobs attached to the chain, like the little carnelian charms below. The cross stands for faith, the anchor for hope (that the ship carrying a loved one will return home safely), and the heart for love. They were quite popular symbols form the mid 19th century.
Another typical fob is a cigar cutter, like the one below and at the top of the post. This magnificent Art Nouveau piece has a naked lady depicted on the front and back, amid swirls of engraving and scrolling.
Other attachments could be a sovereign case, a mounted coin, and a pencil. Medals were also common and I will talk about them in my next post.