1890 - 1970

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You might enjoy a tour of our collection of historic cameras at the links above and below.   We have an extensive collection of early to mid 20th Century film cameras, many Kodaks but we have an assortment of other brands.   While most of our emphasis is on American cameras, we have many German Kodaks, the brilliant designs of August Nagel.  Since we use professional grade Nikon cameras to photograph the homes we sell, we also have a full collection of the historic Nikon professional cameras going back to the late 1940s, and the most significant models of Nikkorex and Nikkormat amateur lines.

The odder orphans of photographic history are fun to collect, and occasionally shoot (but not for your home's virtual tour).   However, sometimes we include a few vintage pieces in our staging.

We also enjoy making presentations on Camera History to schools, clubs, community groups, etc.   We bring a selection of cameras and have a great PowerPoint presentation.  Please contact Kevin.  All of our online images are free for use, but as a courtesy, please let us know and give us credit in your online or print publications.

My interest in photography started in junior high when one of the teachers offered a class and we converted a windowless janitorial closet into a darkroom.  I took further courses in high school, and college, along with film classes.  The darkroom skills are now transferred to PhotoShop, but the approach is amazingly similar.  My love of photography has provided a great synergy with my passion for real estate.



The links on this page represent our collection of roughly 200 vintage cameras from the late 1890s to the 1980s.   The majority of the collection is Kodak oriented as that was the quintessential American camera and for many years the world standard for the amateur photographer.    In some cases it is interesting to include examples of the competitors that drove Kodak's design and marketing decisions, especially Ansco which preceded Kodak as a camera manufacturer, and Argus in the 1930s and 1940s.  We especially like the odd or innovative models that demonstrate the evolutionary process (or should I say creativity).

It wasn’t until post WWII that German cameras became significantly popular, and the Japanese followed on that success in the 1950s.  In both cases the twin-lens-reflex cameras (TLR) were significant in the upper-end consumer segment, and folding (bellows) cameras were phased-out.  We have several examples of TLRs in the collection.

The 35 mm format ended up as the dominant design for film cameras in the last four to five decades before digital imagery became that standard.   This was the standard format for the movie industry, so stock was readily available.  Kodak pioneered the easy to load cartridges (135) which became the standard for almost all manufactures of cameras and film.    But is was the Japanese who persevered in capturing the 35 mm camera market from the 1970s onward.

Some of our cameras represent important developments in photography and others are just basic consumer cameras.  We picked these up through various sources over the years mostly because we found them interesting.  Most of the cameras are bellows (aka: folding cameras) cameras or twin lens reflex cameras, but there are a few other types as well including the best of the brownies.




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