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Bulova 1921 Lady Maxim

11/10 votes
Model ID rating explained.

Manufacture Year: 


Movement Model: 


Movement Jewels: 


Movement Serial No.: 


Case Serial No.: 


Case shape: 


Case Manufacturer: 

American Standard



Additional Information

 Recently acquired this one... a real Mystery! 1924 is a guess. Movement is 8 1/2 lignes, case is 18K non-Bulova. I found a post on NAWCC site about a similar Lady Maxim (no photo). The case was 14K gold filled, but had the same manufacturer's stamp. Is this a BULOVA, or was it made for another company by BULOVA??

Image added by myBulova Administrator.

J. Bulova Company. Makers of the Famous Lady Maxim and Rubaiyat Watches.


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Posted January 23, 2012 - 7:51am

Unfortunately, according to the concensus of Admin. and some members (no I'm not included) they don't. They think it would "Muddy the waters" ......

Like having this "Lady Maxim" doesn't (joking)???

"Stiffel it Edith" ........Archie Bunker

Posted January 23, 2012 - 9:51am

Just a bit of trivia:

In parallel with the development of the American watch manufacturing industry came a large number of companies producing watch cases. Until the 1920s, cases were almost always made by different companies than those that made the watch movements, and watches were cased at the factory, by the distributor, or by the individual retailer at the point of sale. Often, a customer could select the watch movement they wanted, and then select the case they wanted to place it in. The list of companies that manufactured watches in the United States in the 1800s is far longer than most people realize. These companies were known to have operated and produced watch cases in the United States in the 1800s and 1900s. A few of these companies survived well into the 20th century and underwent multiple name changes and reorganizations. Dates may overlap when tracing the "family tree" of a particular company. Dates are approximate as company records are inconsistent in many cases. We do not suggest that this list is 100% complete or accurate; in fact, we can almost guarantee that it is not, but it presents a fascinating picture of the case-making industry during this important period in the American watch industry. This information was first compiled and published in "History of the American Watch Case" by Warren H. Neibling.

shooter144's picture
Posted January 23, 2012 - 1:22pm

More info suggesting that it is entirely possible that Bulova bought the case, put a mvmnt in it, made a dial and printed Lady Maxim on it...

timerestoration's picture
Posted January 23, 2012 - 11:34am

I am just wondering... there are apparently several watches out there with BULOVA movements and dials marked "LADY MAXIM" that predate the BULOVA "LADY MAXIM" in the 1935 database ad. What would be an alternate explanation of this if these watches were not true BULOVAs? Would one suppose that another watch company was using the name BEFORE Bulova? And, at least on my example, the dial feet fit the BULOVA movement perfectly.

FifthAvenueRestorations's picture
Posted January 23, 2012 - 12:41pm


as a Bulova collector and not a Watchmaker here's what I see.

The Gilt Numerals and Hands showing don't seem era (early '20's) correct.


Are the numerals applied or raised? 

Geoff Baker
Club 5000Panel Member
Posted January 24, 2012 - 6:17am

Mark - he's JEFF,

I'm not

Confusing isn't it?


shooter144's picture
Posted January 23, 2012 - 1:42pm

I think Bulova made this watch, and marked it Lady Maxim and at some point decided they wantaed their name on the dial instead of the watch name, that this was possibly a one time idea that got shot down. That would explain why some say Bulova and some say Lady Maxim. Its just a possibility, not bassed in any fact, but at least as likely as not.

It could also be possible that it was made as an off shoot venture (Caravelle-ish) that was also shot down.

Maybe it was a special order from a department store....Think Cartier (many of which are Bulova assembled with outsourced cases but Bully bought or printed dials and Bully mvmnts), Woolworth instead of Macy's...

There are many possible explanations OTHER than 'Its Not A Bulova', which to me holds merit as well (Simpletreasure has made some very valid and educated opinions that do hold merit), but not as much to me. The fit, the Bulova printed dial, the case company Bulova used extensively, it all ads up to be too much to just discount THEM as a frankenbully.

Maybe Im just too hopefull that its legit because of how cool it is....

Posted January 23, 2012 - 7:16pm

UHM Shooter, "Bulova Printed dial" your words. Where exactly where would that be???????????

shooter144's picture
Posted January 24, 2012 - 3:02am

I believe Geoff posted photos of cases with Bulova printed dials, cases not made by Bulova...I cannot fathom the thought that Bulova would allow someone else to print their name (Bulova) on a product (Dials included with cases not made or sold by Bulova) from someone else.

Posted January 23, 2012 - 1:52pm

Without arguing whether this watch is or is not a legitimate Bulova-made model, it does seem to me that it falls outside the scope of the site.  We have in the past limited our collection to the direct Bulova line, as evidenced by the Bulova signature on the dial, movement, and case.  Consequently, we have excluded the Westfields and the Caravelles, even though we know that Bulova made them.  I find it difficult to see this watch as different from those.  For whatever reason, it does not bear the Bulova name on the dial.