Sangamon was launched in the Summer of 2019 with the simple goal of designing stunning watches for men and women around meaningful American stories.
Behind The Name
Sangamon Watch Company is named after the Sangamon River, which runs from Central Illinois and feeds into the Mississippi River. The river was loved by Abraham Lincoln, whose family settled along the river when he was a young man. Sangamon is a Pottawatomie Indian word meaning the “land of milk and honey.” When Abe Lincoln was 21 year old in 1831, he resided nearby the river in New Salem where he built a flatboat and sailed to New Orleans. The founders have chosen the name of Sangamon to honor the rich history of Sangamon River.
The Sangamon region was also home to one of the finest watchmakers in the United States- The Illinois Watch Company. It operated for 61 years building nearly six million watches and had over 1200 employees at its peak. It was a pioneer of the time-keeping industry and railroads across the world utilized their technology.
Tyler McKay is a sixth-generation farmer from Central Illinois who was taught true Midwestern values as a kid by raising livestock and working around heavy machinery. His passion for business and entrepreneurship led him to the Gies College of Business at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign (UIUC), where he was inspired to launch Sangamon Watches while completing his MBA.
Brian Su followed his heart to America in the 1980s and has three decades of international business experience, frequently traveling across the world. He has a deep appreciation for American history and President Lincoln’s influence has kept him in Springfield for over 25 years. Brian’s passion for history and craftsmanship along with his diverse skill set has transformed our business model to be inspired by the American spirit.
We are proud to have a global team with a small-town headquarters, focusing on quality over quantity. In October of 2021, we opened a showroom in historic downtown Springfield, IL to better serve our customers and reach tourists along historic Route 66. Every wristwatch is designed in America at our Springfield office around a special theme, which truly makes Sangamon products unique.