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Bulova 1947 Statesman "C"

6/10 votes
Model ID rating explained.



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I second guessed myself a half a dozen times before concluding this is a 1947 Director ("C"?). This was a pretty confusing one, as 3 different watches used the same case with a 21J 7AK within a 3 year period. White gold plate with a slate dial with even numbers and squares for the odd. Lugs are polished and sides are a buff finish.

Statesman in 1946/47 was the same case with a full numbered dial and same movement. It changed to the His Excellency in 1947/48, also w/full numbered dial.

Director was in this case in I believe 1945 to 1947 configured as seen in subject watch.

Available in yellow, rose or white. In 1949 (by documented watches), the Director went to the small case w/ribs between the lugs and was also available in 3 colors. We have determined yellow was "A" and white was "C" in that style.

If Bulova maintained consistency, logic would say that subject watch is a Director "C" in white.

Ad is dated 1946 and shows Director with this face as well as Statesman w/same case and different face. Note ad calls out 3 colors of gold at bottom.

Not For Sale
1947 Bulova Statesman C watch
1947 Bulova watch
1947 Bulova watch
1947 Bulova watch
1947 Bulova watch
Bulova Watch advert
neetstuf-4-u's picture
Panel Member
Posted December 27, 2018 - 6:58pm

Ad gives choices in order of yellow, rose, white. In confirmed watches in this ad, yellow is "A", Rose is "B" and white is "C".

Andersok's picture
Panel Member
Posted December 27, 2018 - 10:01pm

Your watch looks to have the curved lugs (as opposed to the straight edged, seen in the Directors and the HE 'DD'). The curved lugs point us in the direction of the Statesman and matching HE models/variants.

The Statesman was available in three colors, A-Yellow, B-Red, and C-White. Yours being white, I would propose it is the Statesman 'C'.

Dials are another issue, as you stated, and I find one Statesman ad in 1947 that is a match to your watch:

I believe that the three Statesman variants correspond to the pricelist model numbers for the variants A -37123, B -37121, C -37125 at $71.50, as I do not find any other Statesman models at that price. 

Since your watch is from 1947 (with a 1946 movement), we may also need to consider it as part of the His Excellency line. It has been common practice to call all 1947s HE models, but in this instance I do not find any matching dials in this curved lug case under the HE name in any ads that we have.

Those same Statesman model numbers were also assigned to the His Excellency variants MM-37123, NN-37121, OO-37125 at $71.50. It is possible that the Statesmans became these HE variants around 1947. Here is the similar HE model (case and basket weave band). I find no ads specifying those variants to any colors or any specific model. Note - there is also a NN-37111 model, which may belong to more the common NN with tall lugs. If we go by model number, then the watch may be the HE 'OO', but there is very little to prove that.



neetstuf-4-u's picture
Panel Member
Posted December 27, 2018 - 11:22pm

I actually started out sure that it was a Statesman "C", and the more research I did and ads I looked at; the less convinced I was. I've been looking at this watch off and on for the last 2 weeks trying to figure it out. I don't think it's a HE based on face, and never found the ad you referenced showing the 1947 Statesman with face as seen on subject watch. If I did, I confused it with the multitude of similar ads for Statesman, HE and Director I went back and forth between.

This is certainly a confusing one. Perhaps this is indeed the Statesman "C" right on the edge of the transition to His Excellency. There is also the possibility that the single ad we have that you reference showing this watch face as a Statesman might be an error?

I'm not favoring one name or the other and just want to see it correctly ID'ed. My brain is starting to hurt...................



Andersok's picture
Panel Member
Posted December 28, 2018 - 8:40am

The image I posted is from this ad from 1947 here on site, only it is the US priced version and the one on site I believe is Canadian.

I'm wondering if the Statesman model had a different dial for each color:

neetstuf-4-u's picture
Panel Member
Posted December 28, 2018 - 8:51am

That makes sense, most ads all show choice #1 noting "also available in". Choice #1 is most generally yellow, so ad shows yellow version dial.  The three ads you show all match verified Statesman examples in the Db. Well done, you've convinced me, Ken.

1947 Statesman "C".

Reverend Rob's picture
Reverend Rob
Panel Member
Posted December 28, 2018 - 12:35am

I find the lugs compelling evidence....The advert is also a match.


Geoff Baker
Club 5000Panel Member
Posted December 28, 2018 - 8:49am

I'm going with the Statesman

1947 Bulova Statesman C

Panel Member
Posted December 28, 2018 - 8:54am

1947 Bulova Statesman "C"

Club 5000Panel Member
Posted December 28, 2018 - 9:51pm

It's also possible that the name came down to the strap mount, with the Director being on a leather strap and the Statesmen being on basket weave bracelet.

Using the same principle as the Statesmen this watch may be a Director "C".

Just finished a search of 50+ 1946/47 adverts and could not find any black dial Statesmen with a leather strap.

neetstuf-4-u's picture
Panel Member
Posted December 28, 2018 - 10:06pm

I considered that as well, but I think the subtle lug difference pointed out by Ken and Rob makes it unlikely.