Perhaps one of the most legendary timepieces ever, the Cartier Santos is the watch we must thank for the modern horology industry that we all know and love. Designed in 1904 as the first-ever pilot’s watch and thus the first-ever tool watch, the Cartier Santos has continued to push boundaries ever since it was strapped to the wrist of famous aviator Alberto Santos-Dumont. As the story goes, Alberto asked Louis Cartier for a wristwatch that he could wear while flying as it would be so much more practical than his using his usual pocket watch while also trying to control his plane. Evolving through time like most pieces of design, the Cartier Santos has been characteristically fluid in its unique ability to encapsulate the aesthetic zeitgeist of whatever era it finds itself in. As such, Cartier released the Cartier Santos Galbee in 1987 to capitalise on the growing market for angular integrated bracelet watches thanks to the popularity of the Royal Oak, Nautilus and other such watches. With its integrated bracelet, exposed screws, angular design, raised polished bezel, distinctive bracelet and classical Cartier dial, the Santos Galbee was a success and since then has continued to grow as a collection, with the ref. 2319 that we have here representing the mid-sized variants that were offered within the collection during the 2000s.
Loupe This Scorecard
Vetted & Approved
Est. value range
$2,000 – $4,000
Watch is in excellent overall condition. Some wear visible on the surfaces, and some debris along the edge of the crystal. Dial near-mint with no damage visible. Bracelet has 23 links, 9 of which are removable.
Standing as one of the most deservedly iconic timepieces in Cartier's repertoire, the Santos has earned its position within the annals of history. The Galbee, as one of the Santos' most popular sub-collections, certainly deserves its place there too, with its elegant design and storied heritage.