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Early Multiple Lens Wood & Brass Field Cameras

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Wood Cameras61 of 198Anthony Champion Stereo (c.1888) with historically important 1872 lensesCentury Camera
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Posted 1 year ago

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rniederman
(178 items)

This is a sampling of early multi-lens field cameras in my collection. They range in dates from the mid-1860s (the 9-lens collodion camera) to after 1900 (the Royal Mail 15-lens postage Stamp Camera). Years ago, I saw a stunning camera with 36-lenses but was unable to acquire it.

Multiplying cameras were invented in the mid-1800s as an inexpensive way to create multiple pictures on a single plate. What’s interesting is that the camera with the most lenses isn’t necessarily the biggest. The two lens camera (front row) by Anthony is a classic 5 x 8 inch format field style that makes stereoviews.

The larger 9-lens and 4-lens cameras (rear row center & right) have wide backs that allow the plate holder to shift horizontally and vertically to cover a single 5 x 7 inch tintype plate with lots of small ‘gem’ images. I have a couple uncut tintypes posted here on CW. The 15-lens Royal Mail Stamp Camera (smallest of the group) makes postage stamp size images on small 3¼ x 4¼ inch plates.

Wood construction is primarily polished (lacquered) mahogany bodies mounted on cherry bases; and they display nicely with accessories such as uncut tintypes, magnifiers and such.

Comments

  1. scottvez scottvez, 1 year ago
    Great collection rob-- thanks for sharing!

    scott
  2. rniederman rniederman, 1 year ago
    Thanks, Phil!
  3. rniederman rniederman, 1 year ago
    Thanks, blunderbuss2!
  4. rniederman rniederman, 1 year ago
    Thanks, Designer!
  5. Hardbrake Hardbrake, 1 year ago
    Very very nice collection, have you ever taken a picture with any of them? The loading of of glossy enlarging paper in place of a plate would be interesting to see what results you receive. Either way, very nice cameras Hardbrake
  6. rniederman rniederman, 1 year ago
    Thanks, mustangtony!
  7. rniederman rniederman, 1 year ago
    Thanks Hardbrake! About your question ... I have not taken pictures with these specific cameras, but used to do it years ago with others. The challenge with glossy paper (or modern negative material) is to put it into a sheath to ensure the paper or neg lies flat. Holders for these cameras are designed for thicker rigid materials (i.e. glass or tintype plates). Shooting on paper would create a negative. If shooting paper, the coolest thing to try is creating a real paper negative as was done with the calotype process.
  8. rniederman rniederman, 1 year ago
    Thanks, Longings!
  9. rniederman rniederman, 1 year ago
    Thanks, AntigueToys!
  10. rniederman rniederman, 1 year ago
    Thanks, Sean!
  11. rniederman rniederman, 1 year ago
    Thanks, vetraio50!
  12. rniederman rniederman, 1 year ago
    Thanks, officialfuel!
  13. officialfuel officialfuel, 1 year ago
    My pleasure Rob! You have an outstanding collection!

    Michael
  14. rniederman rniederman, 1 year ago
    Thanks, Michael ... appreciate the comment.
  15. rniederman rniederman, 1 year ago
    Thanks, egreeley1976!
  16. rniederman rniederman, 1 year ago
    Thanks, leighannrn!
  17. rniederman rniederman, 1 year ago
    Thanks, walksoftly!
  18. rniederman rniederman, 1 year ago
    Thanks, Bootson!
  19. rniederman rniederman, 1 year ago
    Thanks, chrissylovescats!
  20. rniederman rniederman, 1 year ago
    Thanks, shughs!
  21. rniederman rniederman, 1 year ago
    Thanks, toolate2!
  22. rniederman rniederman, 1 year ago
    Thanks, sanhardin!
  23. rniederman rniederman, 1 year ago
    Thanks, trukn20!
  24. rniederman rniederman, 1 year ago
    Thanks, crswerner!
  25. gluepot gluepot, 1 year ago
    Great collection of cameras, and nice of you to share these very well taken photographs. I wonder if you have a photo of the the 9-lens collodion camera by itself, and whether you would mind if I use it to illustrate - with full credit, of course - an article that I'm writing about gem tintypes and Wing's Multiplying cameras for my blog Photo-Sleuth, please?
    http://photo-sleuth.blogspot.co.nz/
    You're welcome to contact me directly on gluepot@gmail.com
    Regards, Brett
  26. rniederman rniederman, 1 year ago
    Thanks, mtg75!
  27. rniederman rniederman, 1 year ago
    Hi gluepot ... thanks for the note. I will contact you via e-mail and send some images. In regards to Wing cameras, I own two. Are you also aware of Mike Kessler's definitive article on Simon Wing and his cameras?
  28. gluepot gluepot, 1 year ago
    Thanks Rob, for your kind reply.
  29. rniederman rniederman, 1 year ago
    Glad to help, gluepot.
  30. rniederman rniederman, 1 year ago
    Thanks, Chevelleman69!
  31. rniederman rniederman, 1 year ago
    Thanks, John!
  32. rniederman rniederman, 1 year ago
    Thanks, epson233!
  33. rniederman rniederman, 1 year ago
    Thanks, gargoylecollector!
  34. rniederman rniederman, 1 year ago
    Thanks, pw-collector!
  35. musikchoo musikchoo, 1 year ago
    Great Collection !! The one in the Front on the right reminds me of extreme BUG EYES !! (:-D) (:-D) (Sorry, It just jumped out at me !!)
  36. rniederman rniederman, 1 year ago
    Thanks, musikchoo! You're right ... the camera has a bug-eyed look - probably because the barrels are highly polished nickel plated brass which makes them jump out. Compare that with my recent post of a similar (same model) with a brass lens pair.
  37. rniederman rniederman, 1 year ago
    Thanks, Sean!
  38. rniederman rniederman, 1 year ago
    Thanks, epicurean!
  39. rniederman rniederman, 1 year ago
    Thanks, Don!
  40. rniederman rniederman, 1 year ago
    Thanks, petey!
  41. rniederman rniederman, 1 year ago
    Thanks, DrFluffy!
  42. rniederman rniederman, 1 year ago
    Thanks, MattyG!
  43. rniederman rniederman, 1 year ago
    Thanks, f64imager!
  44. rniederman rniederman, 11 months ago
    Thanks, tom61375!
  45. rniederman rniederman, 11 months ago
    Thanks, Manikin!
  46. rniederman rniederman, 4 months ago
    Thanks, windwalker!

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