Bulova 1949 Medico

Submitted by JimDon5822 on May 11, 2019 - 12:33am
Manufacture Year
Movement Model
Movement Date Code
49 (A9)
Movement Jewels
Movement Serial No.
Case Serial No.
Case shape
Case color
Case Manufacturer
Crystal details
Round domed crystal
Watch Description

This is an extremely interesting watch.    It is a 25mm 10kt yellow gold plate watch.  It has a 10BCC 17J movement with a J9 date code.  The dial has radium arabic hour numbers with radium pencil hands and a red center second hand.   It is customed printed with "13th All-American Soap Box Derby". The case back is custom engraved "Awarded by Chevrolet to T.R. Paules for Winning the Soap Box Derby 1950."   I was able to find the actual newspaper article with several photos of Thomas Paules talking about his winning day.  It even has a photo of him with his prizes.   I think I see a watch on his hand and wonder it if was this one.  Really cool to have the history with it.   Now to the model.   It looks like an American Clipper case from the 40's.  it is boy size at 25mm.  I can't seem to find a match.  The Gazette and Daily (York, Pennsylvania) · 20 Jul 1950

1949 Bulova watch
1949 Bulova watch
1949 Bulova watch
1949 Bulova watch
Posted May 11, 2019 - 7:29am

Man, that is an interesting one. Love the engraving and story. The seconds track and red second hand suggest it was a timer watch, perhaps a medical model.

I started out thinking it might be a women's watch presented as a boy's watch and looked at Clara Barton models. Close but  hands appear to be a different length. Still looking.

Very cool - unknown at present.

Kathy, how does this compare size-wise to your C. Barton?

Kathy L.
Posted May 15, 2019 - 10:23pm

In reply to by neetstuf-4-u

Bob, the Clara Barton's are 18mm with a 8mm lug width.  This could have been a nurse watch that they used as a boy's presentation watch I suppose.  It isn't that far off in size to the Air Warden though which I believe is a 26mm case with a 14mm lug width.  Some of the mens watches were pretty small.  

Geoff Baker
Posted May 15, 2019 - 9:36pm

I love it! I can only imagine how proud young T.R. Paules would have been to wear this watch. This is a special watch for certain.

The style, other than the sweep second hand is the same as the military themed watches of the World War II era. The 10BCC movement makes it a full size adult mens watch (I really don't think Bulova made 'childrens watches'). I can find cases that are similar but all have a subsidiary second hand.

1950 Bulova Unknown

Posted May 18, 2019 - 6:06am

Also note the case date code of J9 (49) and A9 (also 49). Not sure why they dropped the J date code.

Agreed that it is probably a nurses model, but lets go unknown for now.

Posted March 14, 2020 - 4:39pm

Found this interesting newspaper article written by TR Paules himself talking about his Soap Box Derby experiences.   What is interesting is the second to last paragraph he notes he received a "gold watch" at the national derby in Akron.  I believe this is the watch I have as the local derby article it does not indicate he received a watch.   

The York Dispatch (York, Pennsylvania) · 30 Sep 1950

TR Paules article.

Posted March 14, 2020 - 7:36pm

In reply to by JimDon5822

Being able to pinpoint an engraved watch down to a specific person, event, and day with published documentation is a pretty rare and exciting thing. Congrats!, hopefully at some point we can name the watch.

Posted July 24, 2021 - 1:15am

This appears to be a white dial version of the Medico.  There is no confirmation that this model came in white but it is an exact match to the 5 unknowns we just ID'd as a Medico with the three new ads we found including this one.  Everything is an exact match except the dial color and custom printing.  

1949 Bulova Medico (white dial version tentative)