A Few Words About This Site

About Me

If you're reading this page, then you probably want to know something about me and my objectives for this site.  So, let me say a few words on that subject.  First, I am not a "Bulova expert" or any other kind of expert, for that matter.  I've never held myself out as such to anyone, and I never will.  I'm just someone who really likes Bulova watches.  If you've looked through my watch images, then you already know I'm an enthusiastic collector.  I also like to spend a lot of my time studying vintage advertisements and doing other research on Bulova watches and related topics.  This site has evolved as a place for me to record the fruits of those labors and to share them with anyone who is interested.

 

For the record, I don't think anyone is an expert on vintage Bulova watches.  There just isn't now, and probably never will be, enough information available to attain that status.  We're all just learning what we can and sharing what we know--or, often, only what we think we know--with others as time and opportunity allow.

 

I've worked in a number of different professions, none of which had anything to do with watches, so I won't bore you with the details.  I will say, however, that my professional background afforded me ample opportunity to appreciate the value of facts, the danger of assumptions, and the ability and willingness to distinguish between the two.

 

Purpose of the Site

Initially, my goals in creating this site were purely personal, i.e.,  to document my collection for insurance purposes and to have pictures of my watches readily available when opportunities for new acquisitions arose.  However, since that time, I have become aware of the shortage of objective, factual information regarding Bulova watches as well as the need for open acknowledgment of what is mere opinion versus what is supported fact.  As some may already know, most official records regarding Bulova watches manufactured prior to 1970 have been lost or destroyed, leaving Bulova collectors to piece back together that history through observation and review of vintage advertisements and any other publicly accessible information.  Although there are other Web sites involved in those activities, I have observed in those efforts the frequent habit of leaping to unsupported conclusions, followed by advocating those assumptions as fact.  The result is a series of urban myths.  I am determined not to perpetuate that practice.  On this site, I hope to reveal the truth (or lack thereof) behind some of those popular myths by simply looking objectively at the available evidence.  Of course, ultimately, you as the reader are the judge of what you do and do not believe.  I only hope to give you more information to consider and to be honest about the strengths and weaknesses of all information presented here.

 

The conclusions and opinions I express in the Information pages of this site, my Watch Blog, as well as in the detailed information regarding each watch in my collection, are based on my observations of thousands of Bulova watches in my collection and others', countless hours reviewing Bulova advertisements, study of publications regarding the watch industry, and, most recently, research conducted at the U.S. Library of Congress, which has a wealth of information on the watch industry in the United States and, in particular, Bulova.  As I said earlier, that doesn't make me an expert.  All it means is that I spend a lot of time studying this stuff, so I'm not just making it up.  That doesn't mean I'm always right.  I'm not, and I appreciate anyone pointing that out to me.  That's why I have now added the ability to comment on just about everything on my site, and I've added the Forum to encourage feedback.  I hope that you'll share your valuable thoughts and information with me.  I know I'm not the only one investing time and energy in understanding these watches, so, please, contribute your knowledge here so that others may benefit from it.

 

In expressing my thoughts and conclusions, I have, and will continue to, aim to carefully distinguish between supported facts and guesses, assumptions, or otherwise unsupported conclusions.  If I do not have facts to support a conclusion, I will clearly state that to be the case; if I have documented sources for my information, I will freely share those sources.  My goal is not to persuade that I am all knowing and always right, but rather to openly and honestly report what I have seen, read, and believe to be true based on fully disclosed evidence (or acknowledged lack thereof).  Having fully disclosed the basis of my statements, you, the intelligent reader, are then free to judge the value and reliability of the information for yourself.  If I ever fail to meet this commitment, please let me know.

 

A Word About Old Vintage Watches

As you will note, many of the watches in my collection, particularly the 80+ year old models, were acquired in far less than mint condition.   Most of them were found on eBay, sadly offered as "for parts or scrap" with no regard for their rarity or potential value.  I believe that rescuing these old works of art and restoring them to their former glory is a worthwhile endeavor, and this site will document my progress toward that goal.  If you find yourself thinking, when you look at some of the unrestored watches, "what a piece of junk", then be sure to also review the corresponding vintage ad or photo showing that model as it looked originally, or restored to mint condition, so that you may appreciate the potential beauty in the watch before you.

 

Please Ask Before Using Watch and Box Images

The photographs and images on this site were produced by me for my exclusive use, or were provided for my use by fellow collectors.  Kindly do not copy, download or otherwise use pictures of watches or watch boxes without my written permission or permission of the acknowledged owner of the image.  Images of third-party advertisements are hereby made freely available, and no permission is necessary to use them for any purpose other than re-sale.   I make no claim of ownership over third-party advertisements, which were not created by me and which were put in the public domain by their rightful owner.   Most of the advertisements displayed here were shared with me by fellow collectors, and I hope that, by publishing them on my site, you, in turn, will find them useful in identifying your own collection.

 

Giving Credit Where It's Due

Some Bulova model identifications were accomplished through "The Complete Price Guide to Watches", by Tom Engle, Richard E. Gilbert, Richard M. Gilbert, and Cooksey Shugart.  Horological trademark information was taken from the "United States Horological Trademark Index", by Kurtis Meyers.  Though I take issue with much of the information conveyed on the myBulova website, including the large number of bogus model IDs and frequent substitution of opinion and guesses for fact, I have found the ad database there to be a very useful tool in identifying watches.

 

I wish to extend a special thanks to those fellow watch collectors who contributed to this site through the generous offering of images of their own watches, watch boxes, and the many third party advertisements that they gathered through their diligent labors.   It is sad but true that such generosity is a rare trait these days.  Those much appreciated individuals are as follows:

 

Robert Butler

Bruce Shawkey

Bob Bruno

Greg Erickson

Shawn Bourget

William Smith

Jerin Falcon

Geoff Baker

Oliver Breintenbach

John Pirino

Jeff Shimp

 

Several great sources of information about Mickey's were used, including http://75yearsfortheinegersollmickey.blogspot.com/, http://www.mickeymousewatches.co.uk/, the excellent book  "The Mickey Mouse Watch: From the Beginning of Time", by Robert Heide and John Gilman, and "Collecting Comic Character Clocks and Watches", by Howard S. Brenner.

 

Lastly, but certainly not least, endless thanks to my amazing husband, who supports (in every sense of the word) my love of watches even though he doesn't wear one, doesn't even own one, and, frankly, couldn't care less about them.

 

Thank you for visiting my site.  I hope you come back often.

 

- Lisa