1927 Bulova Lone Eagle

I'd like to start this topic by inviting all who read this to post any information they may have about the release of the original 5000 Bulova Lone Eagle watch series in May 1927.

You can read my article "The Bulova Lone Eagle Story" for an insight into my theory about this amazing watch series.

Some points to consider:

  • Did Bulova really sell 5000 watches within the 3 days after the Lindbergh landing?
  • Where were they sold, America or France?
  • What advertising did Bulova use back in 1927 to accomplish such an amazing feat?
  • Why did the corner design change?
  • Is the design of corner cut model that we see today really an art-deco symbol for an eagle?

I look forward to hearing your comments and thoughts.

William Smith's picture
William Smith
Posted June 10, 2014 - 1:02pm

Club 5000Panel Member

Bobbee  I can't get the link to work above.

bobbee's picture
bobbee
Posted June 10, 2014 - 3:12pm

It's not a link Will, it is the only way I could post the excerpt with my tablet, I can't "copy&paste" on myBulova with it for some reason, but I can "trick" the comments box so I can post stuff.

The original link is here:http:  http://ihc185.infopop.cc/eve/forums/a/tpc/f/9886009961/m/4181056311

 

Do you remember it now?

 

William Smith's picture
William Smith
Posted June 11, 2014 - 2:57am

Club 5000Panel Member

Yep...I remember it.  Thanks

bobbee's picture
bobbee
Posted June 20, 2014 - 1:17pm

July 1927 LE ad, same ad as Will found, but different jewelers in different city.

 

 

 

 

..one of the last ads for the CCLE.

This is from June 1929, and has not only a different band, but has what is called the "wing" enamel decoration. Interesting.

Note also that even though this LE has the genuine enamel design it still has the old style hands.

 

William Smith's picture
William Smith
Posted June 21, 2014 - 3:01pm

Club 5000Panel Member

Good one Bobbee.  Interesting that this June 1929 Bulova-generated ad refers to the verticle bezel pattern as "black enamel wing decorations".  Same pattern as before, just a new text discreption.  Also noteworthy that it's offered "complete with mesh and bar link band..."
Bobbee, do you know/remember the pub source of the ad above?  Probably a larger-distribution magazine...as it looks more directed to the public than to jewelers/dealers (so most likely not the Jewelers Circular etc....).

bobbee's picture
bobbee
Posted June 21, 2014 - 8:49pm

Can't remember exactly, but it was in NY state. I'll try and find it again.

Pattern is the correct one as seen on all LE's, unlike the usual "fern" like design.

Stephen refers to the design in the ad as the "eagle's head".

 

Edit- Stephen has already posted the June 1929 LE ad in the newspaper decades ads.

Newtown Register, June 29th. 1929.

bobbee's picture
bobbee
Posted June 25, 2014 - 7:35am

 

  June 19th, 1927 ad.

 

 

 

July 9th, 1927 ad.

 

 

bobbee's picture
bobbee
Posted July 28, 2014 - 7:15am

THIS....has to be seen to be believed.

http://store.paulfrasercollectibles.com/Charles-Lindbergh-signed-Spirit-of-St-Louis-fabric-p/pt791.htm

...and you think an original 1927 Bulova Lone Eagle in it's case would be out of your budget range...

William Smith's picture
William Smith
Posted September 30, 2014 - 3:43am

Club 5000Panel Member

That thing is still for sale.  ...and I see why at that price.  75,000 of anything is a lot of money, unless it Rupes or Pesos.  

bobbee's picture
bobbee
Posted September 30, 2014 - 2:32am

Click on the link, then click on "Contact" to see four Lindbergh film segments and photos.

 

http://www.airportappraisals.com/

William Smith's picture
William Smith
Posted September 30, 2014 - 3:51am

Club 5000Panel Member

Great clips Bobbee. Thanks for finding and posting them!  Cool

bobbee's picture
bobbee
Posted October 24, 2014 - 2:02pm

 

  Ever heard of a Platinum Lone Eagle?

Me neither, but at this wedding of some wealthy folk the bride and groom exchanged some nice gifts, including a platinum LE. It is pre-1929, so would be the first model.

            

                                                           

William Smith's picture
William Smith
Posted October 25, 2014 - 2:10pm

Club 5000Panel Member

Good searching.... but who knows, it could have been the bride who submitted the wedding bio to the newspaper, and it sounded better if her gift was platinum.

William Smith's picture
William Smith
Posted October 25, 2014 - 11:10pm

Club 5000Panel Member

or the bride's family footed the bill for the wedding and bride's gift, they submitted the weddign bio, and the family wanted to make things sound better....fooling both the groom and the bride.
 
What's great about Bobbee's comment is the depth and field of material which he is able to search for terms.  I'm sure it takes hours to do, and months to learn to do :)

mybulova_admin
Posted October 25, 2014 - 10:54pm

Club 5000Panel Member

Ummm, yeah right, OK. No evidence as yet to prove that Bulova produced a platinum version. I wonder that if you had more money than sense you could plate a LE in platimum?

bobbee's picture
bobbee
Posted October 26, 2014 - 3:39am

Or if you know the newspaper editor? :-)

Doubt it was platinum, just shows that some folk like to big up an already big event. Funny.

Reverend Rob's picture
Reverend Rob
Posted October 26, 2014 - 10:48am

Panel Member

Curious announcement, but what people used to submit for publication has changed dramatically since the olden days.

I have a several old newspapers from the 20's 30's etc, and it always amuses me to read the social pages. Single women, men, and couples posted small articles about what they were doing, ie. 'Mrs. Edith Smith has undertaken a trip to Italy to visit her friend, Mrs. Furillo, of Florence, who has been unwell.'

The pages are chock full of these highly intimate glimpses into people's lives, reminiscent of Facebook today. Kind of a 'one-upmanship', and possibly open to exaggeration. However, the husband in the clip above gives the bride a car, and she responds with a gift of a watch that might well have cost as much as a car. 

I'm reminded of a special showing of watches at a show in New York, where unseen and unheard of examples of watches were shown. Each had been comissioned by a well heeled customer, and their existence was hitherto unknown. This practice continues today, and is not well publicized. The above mentioned bride may have been under the impression that the LE was 'the' watch to have or give as a gift, and an ordinary one bought off the rack was simply not good enough. 

Just my opinion, but I wouldn't necessarily write off the possibility of there being a Pt LE, even if it was a one off, or bespoke version, duly executed by Bulova. 

mybulova_admin
Posted January 5, 2015 - 6:43am

Club 5000Panel Member

We know that Lindbergh sent at least two items of communication to Bulova.  1) the telegram on the June 10, 1927. 2) a letter of thanks from an unknown date but prior to the June 17th, 1927.

The Telegram reads "Accept with thanks Bulova prize and watch it is a beauty"

The letter sold with original Lone Eagle release reads:

We cannot say for certain if the letter of thanks was sent prior or post to his flight. The letter states 'Prized offered'. Does this mean that when Bulova sent each pilot a Conqueror watch they also advised that there would be $1000 prize money, OR does it refer to the money that Lindbergh had won thus implying the letter was post flight. That can be debated either way depending on how one interprets the wording. Perhaps the 'future tense' of the wording ("Prize offered to the first to make the non-stop flight.....") suggests the former (prior to the flight). Again I have no proof one way or another but I can see Bulova reminding the flyers of the prize money when they sent them the Conqueror watch.

This advert dated June 17, 1927 confirms that Lindbergh sent the letter prior to its original public release, so we can safely say that the letter was part of the original release.

I believe we have now firmly established that Bulova did sell all the watches they had in stock within either a 48 or 72 hour period. By 'sell' I mean fulfilled a number of orders from distributors. My belief is that the amount they fulfilled was only 5000 based on the recollection of Bulova's Sales Manager of the time, Mr Ballard. Bulova may have received 30,000 orders as indicated by My Taub, but it's my belief they could only fulfill a portion of that as I can't see them having stockpiled 30,000 watches or produced them in the 25 day time period. The remainder of the order may (or may not) have been fulfilled in the months following with subsequent releases.

This again would mean that all Bulova would need to do to hit the market in the 25 day time period would be to:

  1. Trademark the name
  2. Emboss the boxes
  3. Print the interior satin to the box
  4. Send word out to their distributors of the pending release (this may have been done prior to the flight as a number of pilots were getting ready to go at a moments notice in the weeks and days leading up to the 23rd of May, the day of Lindbergh's flight)
  5. Print the letter and photo

This I can see being achievable.

William Smith's picture
William Smith
Posted January 5, 2015 - 12:31pm

Club 5000Panel Member

I say again.....Bulova went public in 1926 was it?  And they were fairly "big" for a few years before this.  There are company reports somewhere...both reports to share holders, and internal reports to the board (and others).  I've seen snippets of later Bulova company reports, and they have sections named Marketing, Developments (or some such wording for things in the pipeline), etc...

I'm almost positive these documents would address pre-prep of a watch to later be distributed/named in regards to this future Trans Atlantic completion.  

Somewhere, in a box in a basement of an old Jewelry store, there's a stack of these old company reports waiting to be found or thrown away.  I hope its the former and not the latter.

bobbee's picture
bobbee
Posted March 8, 2015 - 10:35am

...so, the search for facts.

The biggest one has been finding proof-pro or anti-that Lindbergh wore a Bulova watch on his flight, and just which model it was.

This snippet below comes from the bottom of page657 and the top of page 658 of the book:

"The history of neuroscience in autobiography, Volume 5", written by Larry R. Squire.

The passage is from the memoirs of an eminent neurosurgeon, Arnold Bernard Scheibel, whose history of employment can be seen on page 656 of the above book. I will link to this page, and if you wish to follow his little bio you can "turn the pages" by clicking on the page at the right side.

https://books.google.co.uk/books?id=qRMd3lJ5OQYC&pg=PA657&lpg=PA658&focus=viewport&dq=bulova&output=html_text

 

And here is the snippet.

 

 

William Smith's picture
William Smith
Posted March 8, 2015 - 4:28pm

Club 5000Panel Member

Great stuff.  Good use of the internet :)
Its kinda interesting how history gets written.  Things happen, there's some records, some time goes by, and then history is "written"- and should always be open to re-writes as new info comes up.  One problem is its often challenging to re-write if the previous rendition is "written in error" in a major publication or displayed in a major museum.

Case in point.  Several years ago, I found a webpage which showed some of the displays at the Smithsonian, in their aviation wing.  They had a Charles Lindbergh display, and one of the sets of items in that display was a Bulova Lone Eagle watch.  I can't find the website now, but at the time, it displayed a 1928 Lone Eagle Cut Corner watch (based on case serial number I finally got from the clerk or curator at the time).  It was displayed in a Lone Eagle II green wooden box made by Arrow Manufacturing Co for Bulova.  I actually think it was the second version of the green box- the one with what I call the "scissor lift" function.  

The verbiage in the display made it sound like that was the original type of box and watch that Lindbergh had named after him.  Which, in a way, was correct.  However one could easily see the display and not know the watch was from 1928 (dial had the closed 9) and the box was from LEII.

Stephen and I were in contact with these folks, or at least I was, and I used MyBulova's info to back up what I was talking about.  I delicately suggested they had the wrong watch, and the wrong display box.  I sent copies of all the ads we had, printouts of watch examples, and what we "believed" at the time.  I just wanted them to be aware that, based on ads and research, they may have the "wrong watch and box" on display.  

After about six months dealing with a clerk, I finally got in touch with the curator of the aviation wing at the time.  She acknowledged seeing the info I had sent.  We exchanged a few more emails, then she gave me her phone number.

I called her, and while she agreed that perhaps MyBulova was closer to the "history" as believed on that day, they were not going to update/rewrite/change the Lindbergh display.  One reason she gave, and I'm sure this was why she said it on the phone vs email, was that display was on permanent loan to the Smithsonian from the King family.  This family was a big $$ supporter of the Aviation wing, and curator/Smithsonian was hesitant to change a display from "as donated or loaned" when it came from a family who give the wing big $$ support.   So history, as displayed, was partly driven by political and financial reasons.

As patrons and history buffs visit the Aviation Wing, they see the display, and then perhaps they write part of a chapter in some "history publication".  They base their history on what they saw at the Smithsonian.  Rightly so.  They have no idea who MyBulova is, or what the facts at the time actually are.  If they did know of MyBulova, they would rightly think "who are these MyBulova folks anyway- this is the Smithsonian, and we are going with their version of "history".  

So my point is, all this history is open to change and reinterpretation and misinterpretation- by both Smithsonian and MyBulova.  ...however most folks are gonna listen to the Smithsonian vs MyBulova or most other groups of folks who think otherwise....  I don't blame them.  "I saw it at the Smithsonian" sure sounds more accurate than "I read it on the MyBulova website".

bobbee's picture
bobbee
Posted July 19, 2015 - 3:17am

Perhaps we may have a reason for Lindbergh's lack of endorsement for the Lone Eagle watch sooner than June 10 1927.

This advert from a French publication must have been signed whilst in France post flight. We know he was putting his name on lots of things around this time, and who can blame him?

Bulova were probably "wooing" him for his endorsement and it may have taken a while to clear up this matter of the Helbros watch.

Loosely translated the advert says: "LINDBERGH HAS THE BEST WATCH IN THE WORLD, HELBROS", and has his signed endorsement, "to the montres Helbros, Charles Lindbergh".

Maybe he signed it not knowing what he was actually doing, but I doubt that.

 

 

mybulova_admin
Posted July 19, 2015 - 7:22am

Club 5000Panel Member

Two points form me.

  1. From what I have seen and read here and there over the years Lindbergh was sent or presented with a watch by a number of companies. So seeing another advert is no surprise.
  2. What is the date of the advert? Just because it's in French certainly dosen't mean he signed it whilst there. There is no way to know if he signed this before or after his flight let alone before of after any endorsement commitment he may have had with Bulova.
bobbee's picture
bobbee
Posted July 19, 2015 - 3:06pm

mybulova_admin wrote:

Two points form me.

  1. From what I have seen and read here and there over the years Lindbergh was sent or presented with a watch by a number of companies. So seeing another advert is no surprise.
  2. What is the date of the advert? Just because it's in French certainly dosen't mean he signed it whilst there. There is no way to know if he signed this before or after his flight let alone before of after any endorsement commitment he may have had with Bulova.

 

Because he signed this photograph to the actual company and it appears to be his writing.

I don't think even Bulova have a letter written in his own hand, do you? All they got was a signature, no dedication in handwriting.

You still believe the company spiel about a "first 5,000" (something Bulova dropped from it's official 'timeline' because it's too hard to swallow), but have questions about something this tangible?

It dates to 1927, Lindbergh was far too busy on the American continents for quite a while, I don't think he was over that way until after 1927.

William Smith's picture
William Smith
Posted July 23, 2015 - 7:14am

Club 5000Panel Member

I based my comments below on a colored table Posted September 16, 2013 - 1:43am by Admin"  The full thread is here.  Excerpt below.
-------------------------------------begin comment-------------------------------------
You can see that the watches serial number fits within the original 5000 range

 
--------------------------------end of comment-----------------------------

Here's what I observe about patterns I see in that table. 

One possible reason the range of 5000 is only spanning 2,508 consecutive numbers could be there are other examples which have not been found yet that are on either side of the lower and upper endpoints we have to date.  
NOTE:  There is a 224777 which is currently ID'ed as 1926 15J Ambassador, so we may not be able to justify extrapolating range below this bottom number.  There is a 229730 currently ID'ed as 1927 15J Envoy, so this may be the top end of extrapolated range.
229730 - 224777= 4953 - which is pretty close to a possible range of 5000.

There are two watch records w/ mvnt SN's falling w/i the range that are NOT in the orange table. How many of those 14 SN's in orange table AND 2 not in orange table are:
-from watch records on sight?     8
-correspond to watches currently ID'ed as first 5000 Lone Eagles?   6
- and if not 1st LE's, are some type of outliers?   2

Bobbee, you said there were a scant six of these 14 numbers on site. I think you didn't count those not in orange table. There are 8 on MyBulova.  To suggest a strong pattern, I would expect all 8 of those to be ID'ed as first 5k OR there needs to be strong evidence suggesting not to count them as outliers (therefore not an exception to the expected pattern).  
Below are records on site:
225753 currently ID'ed as 1928 Lone Eagle. Case SN 8338288 suggests 1928. Marriage?
226840 currently ID'ed as 1927 1st 5k LE.  Case SN 6634587
227328 currently ID'ed as 1927 1st 5k LE.  Case SN 6637785
227399 currently ID'ed as 1927 1st 5k LE.  Case SN 6560017
227404 NOT IN ORANGE TABLE current ID 1927 solid gold Conqueror. Case SN 7669320
227849 currently ID'ed as 1927 1st 5k LE.  Case SN 6635469
227962 currently ID'ed as 1927 1st 5k LE.  Case SN 6635638
228259 NOT IN ORANGE TABLE current ID'ed as 1927 1st 5k LE.  Case SN 6636586

The two outliers above are described in each respective record.  The descriptions do give certain reasons why they may not fit the pattern.   I leave it up to others to determine if these outliers should be thrown out of the pattern analysis.  IMO there are good reasons why they don't fit the pattern.

The theory does not state there is a range of 5000 for the case serial numbers, but only that they will always begin with either 65XXXXX or 66XXXXX.  All 6 of the 1st 5k LE's above fit that requirement.  The two outlier case SN's don't.
 

When we look at the movement serial numbers overall, they tend to get higher with progressing time.

There is a pretty large numeric gap between the last (orange) number 228227, and the first (blue) number 276722.  This could suggest there was also temporal gap between the last 1926 Orange and first 1927 Blue numbers/movements.  This possible temporal gap could be argued to exist because the orange representatives were put together in 1926 and shelved for future use when someone finally completes the trans-Atlantic flight at a later date. Or it could simply mean those SN's in that gap were assigned to other model production runs occurring almost simultaneously in 1926.  We could cross check the model production years for watches in our database with mvnt SN's which fall in this gap, and see how many are 10AN's etc...

I can see how Admin came up with this theory based on above, however we still lack one single 1st 5K Lone Eagle record with which to "set the clock" - the smoking gun.  And the sample size is very small.

I'm not saying I agree or disagree with the "factual provable truth" of the theory- simply I can see how one could come up with this possible scenario.

Having said that, I would vote two ticks tentative if the 6 records were ID'ed as 1926 Conquerors.
I have voted 1 tick "not Confirmed" for all 6 currently ID'ed 1st 5k Lone Eagle records.
If we had never came up with or discussed this theory, I would vote three ticks confirmed for all 6 records if ID'ed as 1926 Conquerors.

Remember, one tick for me means Not Confirmed, it doesn't mean Not Possible, or Not a good theory.

William Smith's picture
William Smith
Posted July 23, 2015 - 5:50pm

Club 5000Panel Member

I am looking at the patterns for case serial numbers for these various watches. The theory does not state there is a range of 5000 for the case serial numbers, but only that they will always begin with either 65XXXXX or 66XXXXX.  All 6 of the 1st 5k LE's currently ID'ed as such in the database fit that requirement. 

There are, however, other models which also have case SN's starting with 65xxxx or 66xxxx.  This doesn't necessarily detract from the theory, but does highlight patterns.

I'm going to look at those which start with 65xxxx in this comment.

 
We only see one of the six 1st 5k LECC's whose case SN begins we 65xxxx.
There is this 1925 Executive (with case SN  6551196), and although there are some discrepancies in this ID, it's obvious that the case is not a cut corner, and is green gold.  The Executive case number is several thousand numbers away from this currently ID'ed 1927 1st 5k LE with Case SN 6560017.  

There is also this 1926 Norman (with case SN  6564034), which although a cut corner model, the size of the cut corners are not as wide as the LECC's.  It appears to have the case signature of the 1st 5k LECC's (photo below).  The record also discusses the possibility of the first digit of case serial number being a mis-struck 6.

There are also two 1926 Conquerors, with case SN's beginning w/ 65xxxx, which if they housed different movements, may fit the profile of the 1st 5k LECC's. They both have the open 9 on dial, but one is obviously a redial.
This 1926 Conqueror (with case SN  6558849).  It houses a 17J 10A movement w/ triangle date code. There is no picture of the inside case back hallmarks.
This 1926 Conqueror (with case SN 6558777). It houses a 17J 10P movement w/ triangle date code.  It does have a picture of the inside case back hallmarks, which fit those of the 1st 5K LECC's, however the OP from whom I got the pics for the record notes the leading case SN digit of 6 is "lightly stamped".

I'm just highlighting other watches which also have SN's starting with 65 which are not LECC's, as it helps me understand possible patterns, and examine deviations from patterns.

mybulova_admin
Posted July 30, 2015 - 6:17am

Club 5000Panel Member

Generally speaking, these have been my observations in determining what watch belongs to what model/series. The hands are a big factor, BUT,  I'll say that again BUT, watches this age often have replacement parts and as such other factors then come into play as previously detailed in this forum.

Bulova Conqueror / Lone Eagle watch hands and dial

Bulova Conqueror / Lone Eagle watch case

Bulova Conqueror / Lone Eagle watch movementThese are my observations, having owned and handled a number of both 1925/26 Conquerors as well as 1927/28 Lone Eagles.

William Smith's picture
William Smith
Posted August 1, 2015 - 3:41pm

Club 5000Panel Member

As we search for when we first find something published even loosely mentioning "5000", we should check the footnotes or citations in that publication, if they exist.

In a February 1984 NAWCC Bulletin Sidebar called "The Answer Box", one member wrote the Answer Box with some questions about the early Lone Eagles (Bulletin No. 228: pgs 89-90). These questions were addressed by Henry Fried. Fried cited and used an excerpt from a document -Bulova Watch Company's "Record of Firsts".
 
This "Record of Firsts" was not a webpage or blog in 1984.  It must have been a hard copy publication, even if internal to Bulova.   If we can come up with a complete copy of this "Record of Firsts" publication, there may be some footnotes or citations regarding where they came up with the "5000".

The excerpt Fried used from Bulova Watch Company's  "Record of Firsts" is below.  "Record of Firsts" had to be published in or before 1984.  
 

"On Frklay, May 20, 1927 Charles A. Lindbergh takes off from Roosevelt Field, NY, on history's first trans-Atlantic solo flight - in The Spirit of St. Louis with a Bulova watch on his wrist. (It was the only timepiece aboard; Lindbergh had refused to install a clock, which weighed more than a watch, on the instrument panel or a radio.) As soon as word was flashed from Paris, France, that Lindbergh had landed there at 5.22 p.m., Saturday, May 21, New York time, Bulova rushed 5,000 Bulova "Lone Eagle" wristwatches to jewelers. More than 50,000 more were retailed later."

 

I'm hoping someone who has connections with Bulova can ask if they have this publication in their archives.....and if we can read or get a copy of the publication.  

mybulova_admin
Posted December 8, 2017 - 11:46pm

Club 5000Panel Member

It's been on my mind for years now, as to the timing of release for some marketing material we see for the Lone Eagle model and the watch and case itself.

When Lindbergh made his historic flight, he held the rank of Captain. Upon his return to the US he was promoted to the rank of Colonel by President Coolidge.

'President Calvin Coolidge sent the cruiser U.S.S. Memphis to returned Lindbergh and his plane to the United States. By doing so, President Coolidge was bestowing on Lindbergh an honor never before accorded a private citizen. While homeward bound, the President directed that Lindbergh be promoted to the rank of colonel in the regular U.S. Army Air Corps Reserve. The President also invited the aviator, along with his mother, to stay with the Coolidges at the temporary White House at 15 Dupont Circle during his stay in the nation’s capital.'

Source: https://coolidgefoundation.org/blog/colonel-charles-lindbergh-the-conqueror-of-the-air/

Most, if not all material we see refers to Lindbergh as a Colonel, meaning that Bulova could not have produced this material and the associated watch case (which states 'COL Charles A. Limdbergh) until some time after the 4th of June, which was the period he was aboard the USS Memphis.

Records show that he left Paris on the 4th of June 1927, and the statement above says 'While homeward bound...

Charles Lindbergh left France on the 4th of June 1927 aboard the USS Memphis.

Source: The Flight of the Century: Charles Lindbergh and the Rise of American Aviation, By Thomas Kessner

We know that Bulova started to actively market the watch on the 17th of June 1927, which was the same day they filed the trademark for 'Lone Eagle'. So we now have a smaller timeframe for the printing of the silk for the presentation box. 4 June 1927 to 17 June 1927, a maximum of 18 days.

The accompanying letter which I beleive pre-dates the flight, does not give any indication of rank, but I suspect was also produced around the same timeframe as the case.

Another element I'm still yet to solve is the order of release for the case. There are two versions of this case, one with 'The LONE EAGLE' and another with just 'LONE EAGLE'. Which one came first?

1927/28 Bulova Lone Eagle Box
1927/28 Bulova Lone Eagle Box

17 June 1927, Bulova filed for the trademark of 'Lone Eagle', which had according to them been in use since the 13th of June 1927. 

Did Bulova produce the 'The LONE EAGLE' case first prior to the 17th, only to be told to change it as it didn't conform with their trademark, or did they produce the 'LONE EAGLE' first and then later add the 'The' for some reason to do with either marketing or a legal matter?

Perhaps the answer lies in the early adverts themselves, something I will look further into and report back my findings.

mybulova_admin
Posted December 9, 2017 - 12:40am

Club 5000Panel Member

One possible answer to the question 'which case came first', is how later Lone Eagle cases were presented.

Images courtesy of watchophilia.com and Will Smith.

1929 Bulova Lone Eagle advert

1929/30 Bulova Lone Eagle

1929/30 Bulova Lone Eagle

We also see the 'The' being used with other models like the 'Ambassador'.

Geoff Baker
Posted December 9, 2017 - 7:41am

Club 5000Panel Member

I've always assumed and I think you're validating my belief, that the "The" clam shell was the second version. My watch is a '28 which tends to support your and my theory.

mybulova_admin
Posted December 9, 2017 - 11:04pm

Club 5000Panel Member

OK so this advert confirms that the 'LONE EAGLE' version was indeed issued with the first release and the 'The LONE EAGLE' release for the later 1927/28 release.

This is the earliest advert we have on record and coincides with the date Bulova/Jewelers started to advertise the watch to the general public. Dated 17 June 1927.

If you read the description is states '...specially box with "Lone Eagle" stamped on outside cover...'

June 17, 1927 Bulova Lone Eagle Advert.

Reverend Rob's picture
Reverend Rob
Posted December 10, 2017 - 1:53am

Panel Member

Just a bit of perspective, $50 in 1927 is $704 in 2017.