Can you help me date this camera / movie equipment store photo?

Discussion in 'Casual Photo Conversations' started by invisibleflash, Sep 1, 2021.

  1. There's a Polaroid camera on the shelf that was introduced in 1947, so that date or after. Lots of other stuff, but nothing I'm familiar with in terms of dates.
  2. There’s a lot of 8mm film equipment but I don’t see any Super 8 stuff, thus probably before 1965.
    I like the photograph under the wall clock in the second photo.
  3. I don't see anything 35mm.
  4. AJG


    There is a Kodak 35 in the middle of the second photo, along with some 2 1/4 TLRs.
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  5. I think there are a few 35mm cameras in the central cabinet of the second picture. And there's a display of 35mm slides. Also I can see what I think to be a Polaroid 80 or Highlander type which dates from the mid 1950's.

    Everything about this scene, including the pictures on the walls, says to me mid to late 1950's.
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  6. I like the startled woman peeking out behind the curtain in the second picture beneath the clock. (Zoom in) She looks 1950s maybe early 1960s. The first picture seems to have 35mm, 120 and sheet film on the shelves on the back wall. There are ads for Kodacolor Type A, whenever that became available.
  7. 1949-1952 is my best guess, possibly to 1954 or slightly later depending on inventory turnover.

    In the second image:
    a) On the back wall there's a Brownie Hawkeye poster. The Hawkeye was introduced in 1949 (discontinued in 1961).
    b) There's a hanging shop fixture for Verichrome film, which was discontinued in 1956 (replaced by Verichrome Pan).

    In the first image:
    a) Kodak Slides booklet: I have a copy of the fourth edition. The cover photo is the same, but the version shown in the photo has many (unreadable) words beneath the title; mine just says "Fourth Edition". The fourth edition copyright is 1952, mine is the 1953 printing. Earlier copyrights are listed from 1941 through 1949. The typeface is different, too. The booklet shown in the photo has a 1940s deco-style typeface, while my copy has a condensed Scotch-like serif.

    b) Kodak Lenses booklet: The cover illustration shown in the photo is completely different from the one I have, and appears to feature a Medalist, which was discontinued ca. 1953. My copy of the Lenses booklet is the fifth edition, copyright 1955; earlier copyright dates range from 1942 to 1952. The fifth edition has a generic sans typeface instead of the deco style shown in the photo.
  8. The clothing worn by the men in the framed photos on the wall appear to be late 40's to early 50's, maybe Korean War era.
  9. The display next to the register is for Meston's Travels, 35mm slides I think. That company was formed in 1950. It's only possible to rule out earlier dates, but hard to put a limit on it. Maybe it's a used equipment store and the shot was taken last week!
  10. Here are some data on country of origin of cameras offered for sale in Wards catalogs from 1938 to 1962.

    Country of origin of cameras in Wards catalogs from 1938-1962

    Some general trends in things like popularity of movie cameras, such as "The number of movie cameras increases considerably over the years up to the late 1950s and begins to drop off after that point." may help date your pictures, if you care enough to pore over the data, which were collected for different purposes than yours.
  11. So I think we concluded the early 50's?
  12. Not an expert in the slightest, but I couldn't see any 35mm SLR cameras, which would push the date earlier in the 50s rather than later, though that depends if this was a store with the latest and greatest, big town/small town, etc.
  13. Makes you miss camera stores doesn't it.
  14. There's an ad for "New" Kodacolor Type A film on the wall, and I think that was introduced around 1950 or 51. We still have at least one camera store here, but I miss the incredible range of "stuff" that little shops like this one had.
  15. Perusing the Kodak booklets a bit more, I found copies of most of them listed on one of those big a*ction sites. The better quality images there show that the typeface does match the condensed serif on the copies I have, it isn't an eccentric deco-flavored one. Matching the covers as best I could reveals the editions are likely to be:

    Kodak Lenses Range Finders and Shutters (being able to actually read the title is helpful!): 1945. The camera is an Ektra. The Lenses book I have is for large format, and the cover is altogether different.

    Kodak Slides: The photo is the same for the 3rd and 4th editions, but the word blobs above the title in the camera shop picture do not appear to match either one. The 3rd edition is dated 1946, the 4th first appeared in 1949. For both the 3rd and 4th, the text above the title reads "Kodak Data Book On". The text below the title reads "Third Edition - For Revising Kodak Reference Handbook" or "Fourth Edition". I did not find an older edition.

    Kodak Papers: 3rd edition 1946. The 1947 (4th) and 1951 (5th) editions both have different cover photos.

    Formulas: 1943

    Ektachrome and Kodachrome: 1948

    Copying: 1945. The 1947 4th edition has a different cover photo.

    I didn't find newer versions for the Lenses, Formulas, or Ektachrome/Kodachrome booklets. I can only conclude that book sales were not their cash cow.

    And on Kodacolor Type A film: According to this link:
  16. Most of the Kodak chemicals are in bottles or tin cans: those went out in the late 1950s. So I think we can narrow it down to a decade between 1947 and maybe 1957.

    Now, if those pictures had been shot with a modern digital camera you could probably have read the expiry dates on the boxes of film and the publication dates of the periodicals!

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