Share your favorites on Show & Tell

Rochester Snappa Magazine Camera, 1902

In Cameras > Wood Cameras > Show & Tell.
Vintage & Classic Cameras72 of 1151914 Prototype Multiplying Camera by Harvey WingThe 1881 American Gem No.2 – a very early toy camera
22
Love it
0
Like it

aghcollectaghcollect loves this.
catteanncatteann loves this.
walksoftlywalksoftly loves this.
gargoylecollectorgargoylecollector loves this.
SignaholicSignaholic loves this.
gluepotgluepot loves this.
leighannrnleighannrn loves this.
DesignerDesigner loves this.
Chevelleman69Chevelleman69 loves this.
chrissylovescatschrissylovescats loves this.
egreeley1976egreeley1976 loves this.
sanhardinsanhardin loves this.
AntigueToysAntigueToys loves this.
f64imagerf64imager loves this.
peteypetey loves this.
SEAN68SEAN68 loves this.
pops52pops52 loves this.
sugargirlsugargirl loves this.
BootsonBootson loves this.
ericevans2ericevans2 loves this.
vetraio50vetraio50 loves this.
officialfuelofficialfuel loves this.
See 20 more
Add to collection

    Please create an account, or Log in here

    If you don't have an account, create one here.


    Create a Show & TellReport as inappropriate


    Posted 6 years ago

    rniederman
    (307 items)

    It was advertised as “The Marvel Camera of the Age,” and the Rochester Optical Company tried to simplify folding plate (self-casing) camera operations. This was because amateur photographers were burdened with loading and carrying lots of plate holders, then keeping track of which were exposed.

    As noted in two of my other magazine camera posts (Chase and Bullard cameras), by the mid-1890s, self-casing magazine cameras with automated plate changing capabilities were being offered. High quality images could be produced with nearly point-and-shoot ease through the use of an automated mechanism that moved fresh plates and films into position after each successive exposure.

    In 1902, the Rochester Optical and Camera Company expanded its famous Premo line with the introduction of the Snappa Camera. While there were other "magazine" cameras available, Rochester’s Snappa was heralded in advertisements as "the crowning achievement of creative genius in camera construction." From a collecting perspective, this is a rarely found, cute little camera.

    The Snappa, a small camera only offered in the 3¼ x 4¼ inch format, distinguished itself by offering interchangeable magazines preloaded with either 10 glass plates or 24 sheets of film. Preparing for a new exposure was simple; pull out the telescoping part of the magazine to position a fresh plate or film. After taking a picture, the telescoping back was pushed back in. This process was repeated until all plates or films in the magazine were exposed. Surprisingly, it works reasonably well.

    And for those keeping track of my two other magazine camera postings (I know there’s at least one of you out there), the Snappa is a side loading / plate changing camera. The Chase camera is a bottom magazine design while Bullard opted to go with rear plate changing mechanics.

    Although advertised and marketed to "people who have avoided photography on account of its technicalities and complexities, to enjoy the rare pleasures of this fascinating art," the public must not have embraced the innovative little $25 camera. The Snappa lasted barely one year and did not appear in the Rochester Optical Company’s 1903 catalogue.

    logo
    Wood Cameras
    See all
    Antique Decorative Folding tripod Photography Vintage wood Camera Decor Replica
    Antique Decorative Folding tripod P...
    $79
    Tropical Rare Hare "New Patent" Camera Jules Vogel Lenses Mahogany Brass c.1865
    Tropical Rare Hare "New Patent&...
    $225
     Newman & Guardia Stereo Tailboard Camera Flap Shutter Half Plate Mahogany Brass
    Newman & Guardia Stereo Tailboard ...
    $343
    Vintage Eastman Kodak Wood & Brass Tripod > Camera Photography Antique RARE 9700
    Vintage Eastman Kodak Wood & Brass ...
    $150
    logo
    Antique Decorative Folding tripod Photography Vintage wood Camera Decor Replica
    Antique Decorative Folding tripod P...
    $79
    See all

    Comments

    1. rniederman rniederman, 6 years ago
      Thanks, officialfuel!
    2. rniederman rniederman, 6 years ago
      Thanks, vetraio50!
    3. SEAN68 SEAN68, 6 years ago
      stunning!!! Rob:)
    4. rniederman rniederman, 6 years ago
      Thanks, Eric!
    5. rniederman rniederman, 6 years ago
      Thanks, Bootson!
    6. rniederman rniederman, 6 years ago
      Thanks, sugargirl!
    7. rniederman rniederman, 6 years ago
      Thanks, walksoftly!
    8. rniederman rniederman, 6 years ago
      Thanks, pops52!
    9. rniederman rniederman, 6 years ago
      Thanks, Sean! (a little slow getting back at ya)
    10. rniederman rniederman, 6 years ago
      Thanks, petey!
    11. rniederman rniederman, 6 years ago
      Thanks, f64imager!
    12. rniederman rniederman, 6 years ago
      Thanks, AntigueToys!
    13. Signaholic Signaholic, 6 years ago
      Great information there Rob! Didn't last over a year, must be quite rare indeed. Seems simple, looking back at it now but back then probably still too technical for most huh?
    14. rniederman rniederman, 6 years ago
      Thanks, Perry. I think you're right. The Snappa was probably a bit too complicated yet it was also an effort to push a design that wasn't what anyone wanted. At the time of this $25 camera, Kodak's 1902 consumer catalogue lists 22 different roll film cameras ranging from $1 to $75. George Eastman was a smart guy and understood roll film was the way to go. Then again, he practically owned all of the patents!
    15. rniederman rniederman, 6 years ago
      Thanks, sanhardin!
    16. rniederman rniederman, 6 years ago
      Thanks, egreeley1976!
    17. rniederman rniederman, 6 years ago
      Thanks, chrissylovescats!
    18. rniederman rniederman, 6 years ago
      Thanks, Chevelleman69!
    19. rniederman rniederman, 6 years ago
      Thanks, Designer!
    20. rniederman rniederman, 6 years ago
      Thanks, leighannrn!
    21. rniederman rniederman, 6 years ago
      Thanks, Brett!
    22. rniederman rniederman, 6 years ago
      Thanks, Perry!
    23. rniederman rniederman, 6 years ago
      Thanks, gargoylecollector!
    24. rniederman rniederman, 6 years ago
      Thanks, Phil!
    25. rniederman rniederman, 6 years ago
      Thanks, David!
    26. rniederman rniederman, 6 years ago
      Thanks, catteann!
    27. rniederman rniederman, 5 years ago
      Thanks, aghcollect!

    Want to post a comment?

    Create an account or login in order to post a comment.